The 2018 Duke of York Hotel Dryandra Chase kicked off this year’s club championship in style, with event sponsor Elders Narrogin hosting scrutineering and a static display at their shop in town. Locals, visitors and travellers were treated with a view of 25 of the best off-road racing machines from WA, and bellies were filled with breakfast burgers and coffee thanks to the Narrogin Speedway Quarter Midgets Youth Project.
After a short discussion from the drivers and officials about whether to proceed with the two-at-a-time starts as planned, it was agreed to run single file on the Saturday and racing got underway with Section 1 run with the field split into two heats.
With the track direction in reverse from previous years, the contour bank jump near the finish line had a bit of a kick to it and caught a lot of competitors out on their first lap. Justin Wells (122) and David Rowett/Lisa Snyman (175) were lucky to come back to earth after both experiencing a near flip. Rowett/Snyman continued with consistent lap times for the rest of Section 1, however Wells was unfortunately unable to continue due to losing a wheel shortly after.
It seems this same jump caused some damage to a number of race cars, with event sponsor Mick Davis from Westside Insurance Specialists limping home on the first lap with a wheel held together by a piece of fence post and wire.
At the end of the day’s racing on Saturday, 20 cars had completed all three laps and crews started making repairs and preparations for an early start on Sunday morning. They then headed to the canteen area for a delicious dinner put on by the property owners and some live music by Narrogin local Dean. The Patmores kindly put on a huge bonfire which kept the marshmallows flowing and the kids happy.
Section 2 kicked off on Sunday morning with two-at-a-time starts providing plenty of action off the start line for the spectators up on the hill. Ashley Ruthers/Mathew Abbott (158) clocked decent lap times despite having engine issues, but unfortunately could not continue in Section 3 due to gearbox failure. After finishing sixth outright in Section 1, Nathaniel Edwards and first-time navigator Isabella Howe (161) had clutch problems in their first lap, putting them out of the race.
Piloted by Hayden and Alex Cowan, the WA Junior Development Team’s Mitsubishi (555) had some overheating issues but some clever bonnet adjustments kept them in the race.
Section 3 was a battle against the clock for all competitors left circulating. New WAORRA members Shaun Turnor and Peter Harper (297) had a little oopsie just before crossing the timing loop on their last lap when they rolled their Super 1650 in the tight corner of the chicane. With a bit of help they got back onto four wheels, and after being given the all-clear by the ambulance and scrutineer, they finished the section with their fastest lap of the weekend. It wasn’t enough to get on the Super 1650 podium though, with their half hour of lost time pushing them back 19 minutes behind Charlie Edwards/Tyler Armstrong (271).
Mark Murray/Dave Bartlet (866) and Brad Krepp/Blake Pugh (823) both had their Extreme 4WDs flying around the fast sections of the track, but the short course conditions kept them at bay, while the lighter buggies skipped over the tight sections.
Chris Unstead/Nick Scalaro (674) finished the section 29 seconds ahead of Grant Payne/Michael Gullotto (22) and 34 seconds ahead of Stephen and Brin Ketteridge-Hall (181), but it wasn’t enough to bump them out of the top spots, and at the end of the day the outright podium stood as:
First Outright: Grant Payne/Michael Gullotto (22)
Second Outright: Stephen and Brin Ketteridge-Hall (181)
Third Outright: Chris Unstead/Nick Scalaro (674)
Congratulations to the 16 crews that successfully crossed the finish line on Sunday afternoon. Check out the lap times and results on the MyRaceResult website.
Sending a huge thank you out to event organisers Steven Philips, Mick Davis and Glen Humphries and all the volunteers and officials that made this event happen. As always, it takes a huge community to make a racing event work and the team did a fantastic job!
Thanks also to our event sponsors:
Missed out on the action?
We now turn our sights to the next event on the WA off-road racing calendar – our very own Marsue Transport Bencubbin 400 will be held in the Wheatbelt town of Bencubbin on the June long weekend (2-3 June 2018). Keep an eye on our website for all the details coming soon!
Photos by: Emma Howe and Shelley Howe