After a run of fine weather it all looked go for the long-awaited Fireworks Supershow here at Max Motors Family Speedway and the crowds poured in. The programme of entertainment also featured the Oval Superstars Windy City Showdown and a Superstock Teams race between the Wellington Wildcats and the reigning ENZED Teams Champions the Hawkes Bay Hawkeyes.
It was the eighth running of the Oval Superstars Windy City Showdown this week and as the last active Wellington driver 4w Shane Simpson has now retired it was a complete field of visitors. They were divided into three groups, each racing each other once for grid places in the 30 lap feature.
In their first heat it was one up for the ladies with 75s Lydia Dickinson taking the chequered flag, leading home both 1nz Christian Hermansen and 2nz Dean Cooper, who was the big mover in the race coming from the back grid to take 3rd place. This first heat was also not without incident with 18s Daniel Nickel rolling and 57h Ben Vaughn retiring in flames.
In their second heat 1nz Christian Hermansen well and truly put the bad season he has been having behind him with a decisive win from 97p Jordan McLeod and 10s Shaun Dickie who was the big mover in this race coming from the back grid to third. 2nz Dean Cooper is another one who has found the Te Marua Track to suit his style over the years and in their third heat he put this experience to good advantage taking the chequered flag ahead of 41p Shane Dewar and 77p Neville McNabb.
Heat results saw 1nz and 2nzgrab the front two grids for the 30 lap feature and for 1nz Christian Hermansen that was
where he stayed taking the chequered flag in a flawless run. 75s Lydia Dickinson was in 6 th place after the first lap and had to work hard to pass some of the top drivers to make her way up to 2 nd place. 10s Shaun Dickie and 2nz Dean Cooper fought it out for a number of laps before the 10s managed to grab the last podium spot.
Top six finishers were: 1nz Christian Hermansen, 75s Lydia Dickinson, 10s Shaun Dickie, 2nz Dean Cooper, 93p Karl McGill and 41p Shane Dewar.
The other feature on the programme was the return match between the Wellington Wildcats and the Hawkes Bay Hawkeyes Superstock teams. Last weekend the Wildcats travelled to Meeanee where they were beaten by an on form Hawkeyes team.
Car issues saw a few changes to the Hawkeyes team this week leaving them with no reserve driver and 11b Matt Titter joining 66b Randall Tarrant, 52b Regan O’Brien and 41b Jason Long on the track. The Wildcats fielded a complete team with 16w Dave Hughes as reserve and 5w Keegan Levien, 7w Shane Davis, 22w Richard Gaskin and 321w Hilton Parker all on the track. From the flag drop 11b Matt Titter showed the Wildcats a clean pair of heels and it looked good to go for the Hawkeyes, but in the nature of teams racing, all it took was a decisive hit damaging the steering of Hawkes Bay linchpin 41b Jason Long thus rendering him ineffective and the tide turned.
The two Wellington blockers were now free to harass the 11b and allow 22w Richard Gaskin and 7w Shane Davis to gain the
lead. Another influential move was when 5w Keegan Levien parked the Hawkeye blocker 52b Regan O’Brien on the wall and out of the race. Although Matt Titter did not give up the chase and 66b Randall Tarrant did all he could to stop the Wellington leaders they were out-numbered and the Wildcats went on to register both 1 st and 2 nd places and the win.
The Friday Homes Superstocks had a couple of races with a few more visitors and locals joined the team’s drivers. 31P Andy McCabe made his trip down worthwhile with a good win ahead of 7w Shane Davis and 321w Hilton Parker. 41b Jason Long won their last race by a good margin from 599p Ron Tye and 31p Andy McCabe.
Support classes were the Moving Company Saloons where the local field was supplemented by 27b Josh Smith. In watching the first heat we thought that Danielle Halcrow was driving aggressively tonight only to find out that it was her father Martin Halcrow driving the 124w Saloon. Heat one went to 27b Josh Smith from 34w Matt Eckersley and 5w Jaden Munn. Their next race was also taken by 27b Josh Smith with 57p Calvin Honore in 2 nd place and 242w Ashleigh Halcrow taking the 3rd spot. Their final race went to 34w Matt Eckersley, ahead of 242w Ashleigh Halcrow and 124w Martin Halcrow.
The Capital Pools and Spas Stockcars really entertained the large crowd tonight and their antics were well appreciated by both Speedway stalwarts and novice spectators alike. In amongst the crash and bash some of the drivers still managed to make it to the chequered flag ahead of the others. The first race saw 6w Paul Gaskin take the win from 52w Josh Lockett and 1nz Josh Prentice. 1nz Josh Prentice managed to move up two places to take the win for their next race from 6w Paul Gaskin and 15w Hayden Thomas. The last race also went to 1nz Josh Prentice from 4w Keegan Levien and 669w Brendan Tye.
For those of you that love the crash and bash the Young Guns Stockcar team are raffling off a Derby car, so watch out for the opportunity to purchase a ticket and the chance to join in the action.
The Kerry Lindsay Engine Re-conditioners Youth Ministocks had a number of visitors, 14b Courtney Hatton, 88b Karlin
Painter-Dudley, 48s Jayke McGrath, 43p Kyle Rowe, 55p Max Lowe, 56p Holly Lowe and 92v (so regular she is almost a local) Jemma Barnes. Their first race went the way of 9w Cyrus Crook ahead of 88w Adrian Hume and 55p Max Lowe. 47w Anthony Hocking, fresh from a podium place at Gisborne’s big meeting last weekend, carried on his good form with a win in Heat 2 ahead of 92v Jemma Barnes and 64w Dominik Hargraves. The last race also went the 47w’s way with 94w Ethan Donahue and 9w Cyrus Crook following him home. It wouldn’t surprise us to see these three at the pointy end of the field at the Wellington Youth Ministock title at our next meeting on the 9 th December.
The C&M Transport Modifieds had a small field joined by one of the legends of Speedway 21s Newton Gordge returning after a 20 year retirement. The results showed that he hasn’t quite forgotten it claiming two third places on the night. 57w Ben Cawthra took the first race and a 2 nd place in the next heat but unfortunately registered a DNF for the third. 17w Jonas England took two race wins and these two must start as favourites for the Wellington Modifieds to be held next weekend. Another to look out for is 36w Jacob Free, who improved in every race and ended his night taking 3 rd place in the final heat.
The highlight of the evening for many was the Fireworks Supershow which appears to be going from strength to strength every year.