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Kicking Up The Dirt - East Coast Logistics Series - Round 5
Joanne White posted Sunday November 12, 2017.

Round Five of the East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Series got off to a brilliant start at Ausdeck Patios and Roofing Archerfield Speedway last night, with cloudy but fine weather. Unfortunately though as the second round of heats were about to hit the track, light rain began falling over the venue and forced us into our first rain delay of the evening. Archerfield Speedway Promoter John Kelly was determined that the show would go on, and, after an early interval and a few laps on the grader the support divisions made it back trackside. As heat four was once again trackside and being pushed off for the start, the rain returned and we were forced into our second rain delay of the evening. After another break, and even more laps on the grader, the showers returned for a third time and John Kelly had no option but to abandon the rest of the program. Lachlan McHugh was leading the Sprintcar points at the time, with Luke Oldfield, Mark Pholi, Brent Kratzmann and Dan Murray the top five when the event was called off.

Thirty cars took to the track for hot laps and time trials with Lachlan McHugh topping the leader board after qualifying was complete. McHugh stopped the clock at 11.522 seconds while Dan Murray impressed with a quick 11.593 second lap and secured second fastest overall. Mark Pholi, Brent Kratzmann and Luke Oldfield rounded out the fastest five. Just 0.149 seconds separated the top five, while the top fifteen all managed to break into the 11-second bracket. Andrew Corbet beat Callum Walker but just three thousandths of a second, while Ben Hilder beat Mick Sauer by only 0.006 seconds. Kevin Hill had mechanical issues and missed his qualifying spot, but was able to complete a single lap at the end. Kristy Bonsey ever so gently inverted the Q42 racer in her qualifying run, while Andrew Marks came to grief in his qualifying run when a wheel broke as he raced through turn one. Adam Butler and Nathan McFarlane both missed their qualifying runs as well.

Heat one started with Karl Hoffmans and Jayden Peacock from the front row, with hard-chargers Kevin Titman, in his first appearance this season, and Mick Sauer from the second row. Hoffmans got a brilliant start when the green flag flew, quickly settling into the lead while Titman attempted to race up the inside of Peacock. Peacock fought back mid-track as they rounded turn one to secure second, while Andrew Scheuerle tried to race underneath Sauer. Titman made a small mistake in turn two, allowing Sauer to race by on the high line as Scheuerle slipped through underneath, while behind them Brodie Tulloch tried to hold off the advances of Andrew Liebke and Lachlan McHugh. McHugh dived underneath Liebke in turn three but got the exit of the corner wrong and the resulting contact between McHugh and Liebke left Liebke up-side-down and out of the race. Liebke was not hurt in the crash. A full restart followed and while Hoffmans again got a great start it was Peacock this time who was quickest off the mark and led the field to the first corner. Sauer quickly followed Peacock on the high side while Titman was momentarily caught behind Hoffmans. Titman however got all crossed up in turn two, leaving Tulloch no where to go, and while Titman was able to keep moving, Tulloch had come to a stop and brought the race under caution. The third attempt at a start again saw Peacock secure the lead and Sauer race around Hoffmans to settle into second. McHugh began searching for a way under Scheuerle, while Scheuerle tried to find a way around Titman on the high side. Both Titman and Scheuerle made their way past Hoffmans, with McHugh following a couple of laps later, and Titman set about closing in on Peacock, who had already surrendered the race lead to Sauer. Titman was all over the back of Peacock for several laps, searching the high side for a way past, before switching to the bottom and racing underneath the Q77 racer as they rounded turn one. A little over half a lap later Titman looped the beautifully presented Q59 racer in turn four, allowing both Peacock and Scheuerle through, and while Titman was able to keep the car moving the officials had been quick to throw the yellow lights on and Titman was relegated to the rear of the field for the restart. Mick Sauer led the restart from Jayden Peacock and Andrew Scheuerle, while from the rear of the field Kevin Titman wasted no time at all in beginning to make his way forward. Titman made his way past four rivals in just two laps, running the high line as he closed in on the back of Lachlan McHugh. At the rear of the field Kristy Bonsey, back after her earlier crash, had a great battle with Adam Butler and Brodie Tulloch, but at the front of the field Sauer had opened a significant lead. Mick Sauer proved to be unstoppable out in front and took the win ahead of Jayden Peacock, Andrew Scheuerle, Lachlan McHugh, Kevin Titman, Karl Hoffmans, Kristy Bonsey, Brodie Tulloch and Adam Butler. Andrew Liebke did not finish the event.

Heat two started with Nelson Reddacliff and Brad Ayers from the front row, with Reddacliff getting the best start and settling into the race lead. It was short-lived though as Dave Whell, from position three, quickly raced under both Ayers and Reddacliff to take control before even half a lap had been completed. Luke Oldfield got the better of Andrew Corbet as they navigated turn one, before Oldfield switched to the low line and tried to get underneath both Ben Hilder and Brad Ayers. Oldfield managed to make his way in front of Hilder but Ayers was not prepared to surrender his position without a fight and quickly turned his focus to Reddacliff before racing under the Q85 racer as they came around to complete the first lap. Ben Hilder was fighting back trying to regain his position from Oldfield but Oldfield had other plans and not only managed to stay ahead of Hilder, but made his way under both Reddacliff and Ayers as well before setting out after Whell. Reddacliff ran the high line searching for a way past Ayers, all with Hilder close behind, until a mechanical issue saw Ayers pull out of the race. Travis Woods brought the race under caution a few laps later when he spun the NQ28 racer in turn four just moments after Oldfield took control of the race. Dave Whell regained the lead for the restart with Oldfield from second and half the race left to run. Oldfield was all over the back of Whell but Whell drove a faultless race and despite the mounting pressure from behind, continued to hit his marks and managed to maintain his lead. Midfield an intense battle was unfolding between Nelson Reddacliff and Ben Hilder as the latter searched for a way through, eventually making his move as they raced side-by-side down the main straight. Reddacliff of course fought back, with Andrew Corbet and Dan Murray right behind and ready to capitalise on any mistake, but all eyes were on Whell and Oldfield at the front. Dave Whell took the win ahead of Luke Oldfield with Ben Hilder across the line in third. Nelson Reddcliff came home in fourth and led Andrew Corbet, Dan Murray, Jason King, Andrew Marks and Travis Woods past the chequered flag. Brad Ayers did not finish the race.

Mitch Gowland started heat three from pole position with Mitchell Gee sharing the front row. Gee got a brilliant start when the lights went green and seemingly effortlessly secured the race lead while Peter Lack raced beautifully around the outside of Gowland to settle into second. Brent Kratzmann raced around the top-side of Brett Minett before moving to the bottom and looking for a way under Gowland, while Mark Pholi and Callum Walker tried to make their way towards the front of the field. Kratzmann found his way past Gowland, while it took Lack just a couple of laps to catch Gee and take control of the race. Kratzmann quickly closed in on Gee while Mark Pholi edged ever closer to Minett and Gowland, with Walker soon joining the battle as well. Walker was absolutely magnificent on the top-side, using the cushion beautifully to make his way past Minett, and followed Pholi as the pair began searching for the right way past Gowland. At the rear of the field Nathan McFarlane raced underneath Kevin Hill, the pair battling it out for the minor places as race leader Lack approached the back markers and began making his way through lapped traffic. Lack had built a rather impressive margin over his rivals and by the time he greeted the chequered flag he was a third of a lap ahead of the rest of the field. Peter Lack got the win with Mitchell Gee home in second and leading Brent Kratzmann, Mark Pholi, Callum Walker, Mitch Gowland, Brett Minett, Nathan McFarlane, Kevin Hill and Kris Jennings across the line.

Unfortunately though light but persistent showers repeatedly hit the venue as we tried to get heat four started. We had several attempts but despite determined efforts by John Kelly and the Archerfield Speedway team, there was no choice but to abandon the remainder of the program. Lachlan McHugh was highest on points when the meeting was declared, with Luke Oldfield, Mark Pholi, Brent Kratzmann, Dan Murray, Andrew Scheuerle, Peter Lack, Mick Sauer, Andrew Corbet and Callum Walker rounding out the top ten.

Sprintcars Queensland head back to the high banks of Hi-Tec Oils Toowoomba Speedway next Saturday night, 18 November 2017. It is Ultimate Pink Night where all women and children 12 and under receive free general admission. Luke Oldfield and Peter Lack have both won this event in recent years, and with both drivers yet to get a win on the board this season they will be some of the fiercest competitors to hit the track next weekend. But they will not be alone and there will be plenty of tough competition as they battle for a step on the podium. Brent Kratzmann won the last Sprintcar feature event at Hi-Tec Oils Speedway and will no doubt be keen to get a second win on the board, while Allan Woods won the last A-Main in Brisbane and will be keen to get his first Toowoomba win. And never discount Andrew Scheuerle, Lachlan McHugh, Mitchell Gee, Callum Walker, Dave Whell, Danny Reidy, Robbie Farr or any of the other contenders next weekend. This is going to be huge so come on out, see the action live and help us support a great cause. And if you cannot make it trackside, remember you can always tune in live, for a small fee, online at clayperview.com.

 

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