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Huge 24 hours for Blackley’s

Story & photo by Les Taylor

The superbly restored Vintage Speedcars stole the limelight at the sixth round of racing for the 2013-14 speedway season at the Cullen Bullen Raceway last Sunday, hosted by the Portland District Motor Sports Club. Despite only eight of the magic machines making the trip from Sydney they still put on a great demonstration of how speedway racing has evolved over the past eight decades. Jose Canchez stood out,throwing his powerful ex Laurie Mathews VW powered car around the granite track followed by Charlie Vella, Ray Shilling, Harry Berry, Phil Powell, Billy Kilroy, Alan Mace, Grahame Campbell and Clark Wheeler in his diminutive TQ until it hit the tyre barrier in turn one. Mudgee man, Nigel O’Neill dominated the Lithgow City Council Four Cylinder Sedans to post three heat victories in Honda followed closely Ray Healey who racked up two wins chased by Orange drivers Travis Spicer and John Spicer in their Ford Lasers. Also putting in strong performances were Kevin Coleman and Slade Anleark, both from Orange and both at the wheel of Toyota Corollas. The Atlantic Lubricants Series Production class also saw some tremendous dices with the Commodore of Oberon’s Peter Simmons, a similar car driven by Portland’s Kevin Sawdy plus Mudgee men Kevin Spencer and debutant Chris Warnock. Spencer thrilled the crowd with his slideways driving to post two heat wins in his Torana. Sawdy also took two heat victories, with Warnock claiming the final heat ahead of the ever trying Simmons,Patrick Parker of Orange and Kerry Buckley of Mudgee. The Ford versus Holden clash continued in the Coates Hire RSA Street Stock Class, which was yet again the standout racing category with David Giffin of Sydney returning to do battle with the Blackley family of Andrew, Martin, Kevin and Jodie Blackley. Kevin Blackley had a sleepless night repairing the Commodores of wife Jodie and son Martin after they were involved in a massive multi car pile up on Parramatta City Raceway a few hours earlier – Kevin was well clear of the incident and cruised his Falcon to three great wins at the iconic track. Giffin reigned supreme in his new Huge 24 hours for Blackley’s Commodore with two great victories over Jodie,Andrew and Kevin who racked up a heat win each with Martin always in on the panel rubbing action. Young Jed Anson came from Nowra to compete and was in devastating style at the wheel of a Toyota Corolla in the Stones Pest & Weed Control Junior Class notching up three stunning race wins over Scott Bradley of Blayney and Mitchell Brown of Bathurst taking a win apiece. Orange driver Reece Robinson at the wheel of his Corolla and Bronte McKenna, also of Nowra, both put in spirited drives. The fabulous thirty nine race program not only featured the stars in the tin top stock cars but also open wheeler classes including the Quarter Midgets,Go karts and the Grand Prix Midgets. NSW Quarter Midget champion Darren Todd could only manage one heat win and victory in the ten lap feature race with Gary Biner the winner of first two heats. Jason Summers, Rob Stephenson, Jamie Dicker, Courtney Smith and Rachael Holt were all tied up in some great dices. The Cullen Bullen Hotel Grand Prix Midgets also produced some top-class racing with Scott Moir the victor of the first two heats but then Cory Tatarko turned up the methanol to win the next heat and the feature race while Janelle Saville and Stuart McMahon filling the minor placings. Eight year old Jaiden Healey was the only gokarter to turn up but Jamie Dicker joined the wide eyed youngster on the track. The 2013-14 speedway season finalises at the Cullen Bullen Speedway on Sunday May 25th commencing at 10am featuring the NSW Quarter Midget Championship and the car crunching Ferris Scrap Metals demolition derby with full details available at www.cullenbullenraceway. com. After a brief school holiday hiatus, most sports are back on this weekend. Remember, no matter what your sport, we want your story, email us

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