Meeting 4 Review

Article by: Scott Kernahan

Seven Sections battled it out for their Darwin Titles at Northline Speedway on Saturday night 22nd June 2024 in what was a somewhat history making night spread across the sections.  It was an action packed night which saw some first time Heat and Feature Race winners and a couple of huge crashes (fortunately with no injuries) which kept the infield officials busy.

Dirt Karts – The Dirt Karts began proceedings for the night with Heat 1 which saw a tense struggle between Tony Brown and Brad Fichtner.  Towards the latter stage of the race Brown dropped back to third place and Fichtner held on to win with Isaiah Strong taking out second place.  Michael Brown recorded a DNF with what looked like a broken chain.  Heat 2 saw an all the way win flag to flag for Tony Brown with Michael Brown making up for lost time to claim second place with Fichtner rounding out the placings in third.  Tony Brown continued his dominance with the win in Heat 3 whilst the battle for minor placings saw Michael Brown record his second 2nd place with Isaiah Strong home in third.  The Feature race was a Tony Brown benefit as he disappeared into the night to win the 15 lap journey ahead of Isaiah Strong and Michael Brown in third place.

AMCA Nationals – We saw 11 of the thundering AMCA Nationals duel over 3 Heats and a Feature with some surprise results reshaping the landscape of these beasts.  Mark Allcorn picked up where he left off to streak away with the win in Heat 1 with Deegan Sherwood following in 2nd place and Jimmy Keane home for 3rd.  Allcorn was made to work in Heat 2 coming from back in the pack however it didn’t take him long to assume the lead on lap 5 and go on to win ahead of Keane and Sherwood in 3rd place.  Nicholas Glazbrook rose to the top in Heat 3 to take out a well deserved win ahead of Jacobus Beets and Sarah Gordon claiming 3rd place.  Beets and Sherwood had a coming together in turn 1 which resulted in Sherwood suffering a flat tyre which saw him fall down the order.  The Feature Race was and eventful experience with Jimmy Keane losing a left rear wheel courtesy of a snapped axle.  Then came the bombshell of the night with Mark Allcorn making an exit out of the race in smoke when the tail shaft snapped on the #55 machine.  This opened the door for the rest of the field.  Sherwood took his chance with 12 laps to go and got past Jacobus Beets.  With 6 laps to go Mathew Barker struck the turn 4 wall and made a smokey exit to the race once the engine began overheating.  It was Sherwood who hung on to record his first Feature Race win (being the Darwin Title) in the AMCA Nationals class and was a very popular winner ahead of Paul Carmody and Jacobus Beets in third place.

Junior Sedans – A really healthy field of 15 Junior Sedans contested their 3 rounds of Heat Races and a Feature Race, getting ready for the upcoming Next Gen Nationals in July.  Heat 1 saw the first feel good story for the night with Blake Overend recording his first Heat Race win as a Top Star in the Junior ranks.  Brock Beurskens brought out the only yellow for the race with a spin in Turn 4 with 5 laps to go.  From there it was Overend to win with Hannah Tomkins in 2nd and Jessica Foley in 3rd place.  Heat 2 and Kallen Hall reigned supreme to record the win with pretty much an all the way journey. Zachery Czoloszynski picked up 2nd place whilst Jacob Foley arrived home in 3rd place. Harrison Turnbull returned to form in Heat 3 to register the win and River Spitzbarth was also starting to shine to claim 2nd spot and Czoloszynski picked up 3rd place.  It was during this race that unfortunately Blake Overend ended his night with a spectacular rollover on the back straight.  Several cars were caught up in the mayhem which also saw retirements from Brodie Costello, Kallen Hall and Rhys King.  Once the race resumed it was Turnbull and Spitzbarth who duked it out for the remaining laps and only half a car length in it at the chequered flag.  Some great racing happening here between the two.

Solos – South Australian star Sam Martin joined the ranks of the Solo’s at Northline Speedway for the night’s racing.  With 5 bikes on hand the Heats were split with rotations occurring between the Heats.  Steven Hutchinson lept out of the blocks early in Heat 1A and had a heart gripping duel with Ryan Pope all the way.  Hutchinson held on for the win with Pope 2nd and Brad Niven in 3rd place.  Sam Martin shot away to an all the way win in Heat 1B with the evergreen veteran Wayne Lorymer in 2nd place.  Martin also took the chocolates in Heat 2A to lead the way from Steven Hutchinson in 2nd and Brad Niven in 3rd.  Ryan Pope was unchallenged in Heat 2B and sprinted away from Wayne Lorymer.  Sam Martin was dominating in Heat 3A ahead of Brad Niven in 2nd and Lorymer in 3rd, having had a moment and running off the bike track onto the big track on the back straight. Ryan Pope was having a good night as well with another Heat win in 3B ahead of Hutchinson in 2nd place.  Four bikes arrived at the tapes for the Feature race and interest was high.  Sam Martin put in a blinder to streak the pack to win ahead of Ryan Pope and Steven Hutchinson in 3rd place.  A very entertaining night of Solo racing it was.

Sprintcars – A total of 6 cars nominated for racing for the Sprintcars which saw the return of WA star Trent Pigdon, along with fellow sandgroper Aaron Chircop.  Hayden Brown began his debut for the 2024 season as did David Ling and Chris Harrison.  Zack Grimshaw was back in the Ekins Motorsport #11 rocket for his second meeting in the Division.  Pigdon cracked a 12.725 time in the Hot Laps session and transferred this pace into Heat 1 with a resounding victory over Hayden Brown and Chris Harrison in 3rd place.  Heat 2 saw Pigdon do the hard yards from back in the pack, however it did not deter him and assumed the lead after a few laps and go on to score 2 out of 2 Heat Race wins so far. Chircop picked up 2nd place and Brown home in 3rd.  Heat 3 was to see another first for the night, this time with Zack Grimshaw taking out his first Heat Race win since joining Sprintcars this season. Hayden Brown came in 2nd with Pigdon in 3rd place.  The 20 lap Feature race was a cracker with Hayden Brown jumping to an early lead and pulling away from the pack.  Pigdon was hot on Brown’s heels but unfortunately could not reel him in.  Grimshaw was holding down 3rd spot but by mid race it all came spectacularly undone for the 410 rookie when he came into Turn one a bit too hot and couldn’t save it, resulting in his first crash of the season and ending his night prematurely.  Zack was fine, but very disappointed as we could all see plain as day on the infield.  Brown jumped away again from the restart and was momentarily challenged by Pigdon, but it was Brown that maintained his composure to galivant away to record his first Feature Race win in the 410 Sprintcar ranks – and just happened to be the Darwin Title as well.  Pigdon was disqualified from his 2nd spot on the grounds that he contacted the marker cone on the restart following the stoppage.  This elevated Aaron Chircop into 2nd spot and Harrison into 3rd place.

Wingless Sprintcars – The entertainment section of the year witnessed 18 of the Wingless Sprintcars continue their crowd captivating performance for this season.  Cameron Jaenke romped out in Heat 1A to record the first race win for the night in the section ahead of Mathew McLennan and Jamie McInnes whilst in Heat 1B it was young rising star William Prest who recorded the win the Wingless Sprintcar Division. Jarrod Goldoni finished in second place with Keelan Edwards in third.  Matt Sealy was on the go in Heat 2A with a fine drive to win ahead of James Dennis and Cameron Jaenke (already showing some great form for the night).  Heat 2B saw Jarrod Goldoni cause a nervous moment for Keelan Edwards when he pulled up suddenly after a driveline failure heading for the infield on the main straight and Edwards had to evade very quickly.  Daniel Goldoni was still experiencing the wretched electrical issues that have been plaguing him all year and pulled infield also.  He’s changed everything on the car bar the kitchen sink and the problem still eludes him. Tim VanGinneken took the win ahead of Edwards and Shane Norman in third.  The Wingless Sprintcars then ran a Mid Pack Dash of 8 laps and it was Sean Tiedeman who greeted the chequered flag first ahead of Kyle Wiseman and Shane Norman.  This was followed by a Top 8 Dash of 8 laps distance as well with VanGinneken claiming honours in this race ahead of William Prest and Matt Sealy.  The Feature Race is where all hell broke out for the night during the 30 lap enduro. VanGinneken and Sealy engaged in a wholly war out front, Sealy coming from 4th spot on the grid.  That’s when James Dennis found himself involved in a huge rollover after taking a wheel coming out of turn 2.  His gigantic flip caught up a few others including his brother Daniel.  Fortunately James was ok but a bit rattled (and still a bit sore a couple of days later).  Others not to finish included Keelan Edwards, William Prest, Kyle Wiseman.  Upon the restart and with 14 laps to go Mick Kelly had a big moment on the main straight in what was his first rollover in Wingless Sprintcars.  From here it was the VanGinneken and Sealy civil war out front with wheel to wheel action and eventually Sealy got through on the last lap to record his first Wingless Sprintcar Feature Race win after years of coming up ever so short.  Jamie McInnes came home in third place to record a great finish for the two Team McInnes entries.

Street Stocks – A good field of 9 Street Stocks was on hand for their contest.  Jake Koivumaki fired the first shot in anger in Heat 1 with an all the way win ahead of Kane Lloyd and Jack Yeates.  Heat 2 saw Yeates signal his intention to be a real challenger in taking the win ahead of Koivumaki and James Ballantyne.  Heat 3 was won by Koivumaki with Yeats in 2nd and Lloyd in 3rd place. Lachlan Vanderburg looped it on the main straight with 2 laps to go to bring on the yellows.  The Feature race was looking like a major tussle between Koivumaki and Yeates, which did not disappoint.  However only 3 laps in and the two came together and as a result Koivumaki headed infield to retire from the race.  The remaining 17 laps of the 20 lap journey saw Yeates unchallenged to pick up the Feature Race win ahead of Lloyd and Jayke Budd in 3rd place.

Next Meeting for Northline Speedway is Saturday night 13th July  with the Next Gen Nationals for Junior Sedans along with Sprintcars, Wingless Sprints, AMCA Nationals, Street Stocks, Junior Sedans, Go Karts and Solos.