Round 1 of the WAORRA Club Championship, the 2017 Duke of York Hotel Narrogin Chase, ran like a well-oiled machine in Narrogin on 6-7 May 2017.

Saturday started with scrutineering at Elder’s Narrogin, where competitors parked their race cars in the carpark and put on a display for the locals before taking them to get dirty at the Patmore property in Cuballing.

With a healthy field of 29 entries, Saturday afternoon’s racing started with a very slippery gravel track and lots of dust – a result of no rain being recorded in the area at all during April. Two-at-a-time starts saw some close match-ups and the battles to be first to the corner were entertaining for spectators up on the hill. With the field split into two heats, competitors who would normally race against each other were able to watch their rivals have some fun while they waited for their heat to start.

Section 1 saw only two casualties – Chris Giles and Alex Cowan (444) smashed a front shockie to smithereens, and David and Jaxon Fong (881) had fuel pressure problems. Avid short course fan and event favourite Harleigh Uren (77) quickly took the lead and finished the section a minute ahead of Stephen and Brin Ketteridge-Hall (181). Nathaniel Edwards and Luke McLean (161) rounded out the top three, 30 seconds behind Stephen. Brake issues stopped Shane and Curt Elphinstone (44) from pushing too hard, resulting in fourth place for the section.

Sunday morning started early with Section 2 in the same format, with two-up starts and the field split into two heats. Stephen and Brin Ketteridge-Hall were the first to see misfortune, followed by Steve Knowles (115) who unfortunately did a gearbox on his single seat Prolite buggy. With Ketteridge-Hall out of the race, Shane and Curt Elphinstone moved up to third outright for the section, with newcomers Chris Unstead and Nick Scolaro (674) at their heels in their UTV. Edwards had a change of co-driver for the section with father Charlie, but the dust kept them 22 seconds behind Uren.

Section 3 kicked off just before lunch, again in the same format. The warm weather was unexpected for this time of year and made the trek up the hill challenging for spectators. Luckily the view at the top was worth it. Joe Hawkins and Steve Rawlings (229) didn’t have a great day when the crank shaft bearings let go on their Super 1650 buggy. Uren maintained his lead, and while Elphinstone beat Edwards in the section, it wasn’t enough to bump him out of second place in the outright positions.

At the end of the day, it was Short Course Champion Harleigh Uren who took out first place, Nathaniel Edwards and Luke Mclean second, and Shane and Curt Elphinstone in third.

There were plenty more success stories throughout the field, with 22 competitors finishing the event in full. For the complete report on lap times and results, head to the myraceresult webpage.

We received fantastic feedback from competitors, officials and spectators alike on the family-friendly nature of the event and how smoothly it was run by organisers. Huge thanks goes to all of our event volunteers for making this happen:

  • Mal Yeardley and Dave Cowan – Event Organisers
  • John Beer – Clerk of Course
  • Phil Bolden and Trish Cosh – CAMS Stewards
  • Rex West, Bob Dark and the team at Elders – Scrutineering
  • Dave Cowan and Jenny Honey – Event Secretaries
  • Barry Doney, Lachlan Cowan and Shannon Bottril – Timekeepers
  • Hayden Cowan – Start line
  • Rex West, Hayden Cowan, Dave Cowan, Darren Russell, Kevin Hood, Aaron Dark and Bob Dark – Marshalls
  • Team Hotel and Darren Russell – SOS points
  • Darren Russell, Mal Yeardley, Craig Wells, Marcus Wells,Kerry Yaxley, Lachlan Cowan, John Flynn, Micheal Davis, Ben Armstrong & family – Track marking and de-marking
  • Cuballing Shire – Track Grading
  • Tyler Armstrong and Wayne Panomarenko – Track Sweepers
  • Renae and Ben Armstrong – Trophies
  • Kerry Yaxley, John Flynn, Mal Yeardley and Dave Cowan – towing the timing trailer and equipment trailers
  • Mal Yeardley and Kim Yaxley – for organising the raffle
  • Kim Yaxley and Brianna Holt – camp entry
  • And everyone that helped pack up.

And even bigger thanks go to our event sponsors:

  • Duke of York Hotel
  • Shire of Cuballing
  • Westside Insurance Specialists
  • Smartline Personal Mortgage Advisors
  • Racegear WA
  • Elders Narrogin
  • Narrogin Hire Services and Reticulation

And the best for last – a massive thanks goes to the Narrogin Speedway Club Quarter Midgets crew for providing the delicious catering all weekend, and to the property owners John and Doreen Patmore for letting us tear up your beautiful piece of Western Australia!

Now we turn our sights to our next event – the 2017 Marsue Transport Bencubbin 400, just three weeks away on the WA Day long weekend (3-5 June 2017). This event will be Round 3 of the 2017 CAMS, Carnarvon Motel WA Off-Road Racing Championship, and Round 2 of the 2017 WAORRA Club Championship. Keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for all the details.

Race cars on display at Elders Narrogin as part of the 2017 Duke of York Hotel Narrogin Chase