Gippsland Super Sedan legend and current Tasmanian champion Mick Nicola conquered all at Rushworth Speedway when he drove away with the big cash win on Labour Day weekend in the Fun City Gold Rush winning by just .475 of a second over Tasmanian Corey Smith and North Queenslander Trent Wilson.
Other winners over the weekend included Phil Lamb the number one Open Saloon driver maintaining his top dog status, Shane Hutchins a first up win for the season in Production Sedans, Chloe Lamb in Ladies, Lachie Fitzpatrick in Juniors and Michael Skene in the visiting Wingless Sprints.
Action in the Super Sedans included drivers from Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and across Victoria competing for the cash bonanza with six heat races decided on night one going the way of Smith, Matt Pascoe from Queensland who won all three of his starts sending a ominous warning to the rest of the field that he was at Rushworth with his eyes on the prize. Mick Nicola and Bendigo’s Ash Bergmeier won the other two heats on night one with two heats the two drivers competed against each other in finishing with less than a second margin between the two of them at the line.
Closing out night one racing two fifteen lap prelim feature races were held with Pascoe winning the first by over six seconds from Mick Nicola Jnr and Anthony Randall whilst Bergmeier won the second by less than a second over Smith and Wilson.
Night two-heat race action was dominated by Bergmeier putting him at the front of the feature race field with Pascoe starting alongside. Wilson, Bergmeier, Mick Nicola and Bergmeier again won heat races whilst Pascoe managed to set the fastest one lap time of the weekend in his last heat when he stopped the clock at 16.299 on one of his laps.
A forty-lap feature race finalised the weekend with Bergmeier leading out on lap one only to finish infield and out of the race by lap two.
Pascoe assumed the lead and five laps in he to finished out of the race handing the lead over to Nicola who never looked back leading the last thirty five laps to take the big Fun City Gold Rush win ahead of Smith, Wilson, Randall and Neil Witnish.
A small field of Wingless Sprints supported the Goulburn Valley Auto Club with most of the field from New South Wales. Luke Schneider, Andrew Seery from NSW and Michael Skene took the three heat race victories before Skene went on to win the feature event from Seery, Schneider, Matt Thacker and Peter Thacker both from NSW. Seery was fastest during the race recording a one lap time of 17.537 whilst Skene won by less than a second at the finish line in a grandstand finish.
Lachie Fitzpatrick almost took a clean sweep of the weekend in Junior Sedans winning four of the five heat race events with Josh Cecil winning the other, before Fitzpatrick won the final from Daniel Smith, Tristan McGraw, Cecil and Isaiah Hodge.
In Production Sedan action another new winner for the season shows just how competitive the field is with Shane Hutchins the winner. Before getting to the final Scott Burchett won the first heat of night one with Wayne O’Keefe, Geoff Lee and O’Keefe again closing out the first night.
On night two Hutchins took his only qualifying race win after finishing second on three occasions on the first night. Burchett again won in the last heat. Drivers reached the 19 second bracket in the final with Hutchins recording 19.718 as his best lap on the way to a win over Lee, Burchett, Scott Smith and Corey Gregson with only just 1.061 separating Hutchins and Lee at the chequered flag.
Chloe Lamb and Jacquie Fitzpatrick resumed their season long battle in the Ladies Saloons with Lamb starting the weekend with a win in the first heat. Fitzpatrick fought back stringing together wins in the next two races before Leanne Hodge hit the jackpot taking victory in the fourth. Lamb closed out the qualifying with a win in the last heat before the girls threw everything at each other in the final including the kitchen sink and most likely the Whirlpool clothes washer too.
Lamb took the win from Fitzpatrick by just 1.7 seconds at the line with Fitzpatrick clocking a 19.120 second lap time trying to stick with Lamb. Cassie Wicks was third across the line with Belinda Chalcraft and Ally Moore rounding out the top five.
Finally the Open Saloons knock em’ down pick em’ up and knock em’ down again season long slugfest between Phil Lamb and Adam Box continued. Box started with the win in the first heat before Lamb won the next two. Box put away another first place result in the fourth heat before Mark Cecil got one on the score sheet in heat five. Lamb then won the last heat setting up a Lamb and Box rematch.
Unlike most of the season, this time Lamb was on song and didn’t miss a beat displaying dominance over the field to the tune of 8 seconds at the flag. Setting a 17.954 best lap along the way Lamb went on to defeat Box, Gavin Cooper, Keith Simmonds and Carlie Wicks in the Open Saloons.
Rushworth action returns again on April the 8th with Compact Speedcars and Marsh Modified Sedans visiting the club.
The Goulburn Valley Auto Club would like to thank the following supporters:
Super Balance Automotive – WG Panels – Goulburn Valley Oil Supplies – Provac Poultry Services – Bourke Fencing – Kyabram Motor Wreckers – The Rushworth Hotel – Kyabram Bearings – Autobarn Shepparton – Dave’s Lawn Mowing & Small Engine Repairs – Marty Turpin Mechanical – Ipta Fibreglass – FunCity Entertainment Complex Shepparton – Ross Adams Cartage Contractor – Rushworth Bakery – Maxam Printing
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For Goulburn Valley Auto Club t/a Rushworth Speedway