June 13, 2016
South Burnett residents were in rev head heaven when the inaugural Wondai Street Sprints roared into action at the weekend.
The event, organised by the Motors In Motion committee, went off almost without a hitch, although organisers were still tearing their hair out with minor changes within hours of the racing starting.
CAMS track inspector Ian Mayberry, who came up from the Gold Coast for the event, picked up some changes that had to be made on Saturday morning, but these were quickly rectified by painting a few lines, and placing out a few more hay bales.
Mr Mayberry said the track surface was excellent.
“South Burnett Regional Council should be congratulated for an excellent job.”
The 100 entrants raced against the clock over the 1.6km course. Each had the opportunity of running the course 10 times, five times on each day.
The fastest time was recorded by Toowoomba driver Ray Vandersee in his own designed and built race car, a Skelta G-Force.
Vandersee set the course record of 57.20 seconds.
Next best were the openwheelers of Darren Duffield (58.09) and Vikki Paxton (58.88) who both recorded their best times on their ninth attempt.
Duffield spun out on his last attempt at beating the clock (see below).
The slowest lap time was recorded by Justin McCarthy in his Austin 7, while still exploring the circuit on his first lap: 123.27.
McCarthy’s times improved during the meet to 109.51.
The starting line was hectic over the two days, with vehicles rolling up and then roaring off in a cloud of burned rubber.
Some competitors found the two sets of chicanes on the long back straight tight, especially the two open-wheelers.
However, the chicanes were necessary otherwise the entrants would have gathered too much speed.
Organisers positioned grandstands at strategic points around the circuit to allow spectators to gain a better view of the racers.
Spectators also took the opportunity to wander freely around the pit area and chat to the drivers.
They were entertained by commentator Will Hagon who kept up a non-stop commentary – about the cars, drivers and motor sport in general – for the two days.
A shuttle bus was kept busy running backwards and forwards from the parking area to the racetrack, ferrying passengers across for the racing.
- Download full results (168kb PDF)
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There were a couple of spinouts – and more than a few dislodged witches’ hats in the chicanes – but the only real incident happened on Sunday afternoon.
Darren Duffield in his RPV01 open-wheeler lost traction on the tight last corner of the track, slamming into a hay bale barrier.
Unfortunately for the Brisbane-based driver, the bales caught alight.
Marshals were quickly on the scene with fire extinguishers, to be joined almost immediately by a rural fire brigade truck.
Duffield was examined by ambulance paramedics and taken to hospital as a precautionary measure.
His mangled racer was hauled away on a tilt-tray.
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Sundays show’n’shine was held on the cricket oval, just across from the sprints track.
The good roll-up of vehicles attracted an appreciative crowd of onlookers, who were only momentarily distracted when the RPV crash happened just nearby (see above).
The competition was sponsored by Shannons Insurance and the winners were voted for by the public.
Local agent Col Rogerson distributed trophies for:
- Classic Sedan pre-1966: Humber Super Snipe – Roy and Rebecca Welling
- Classic Sedan 1967 – 1986: LH Torana – Mick Baker
- Classic Sports Car pre-1966: MGA Coupe – Dave Hall and Lyn Hayward
- Classic Sports Car 1967 – 1986: Falcon Hardtop – Barney Horne
- Vintage / Veteran – Chevrolet Ute – Kev Perkins
- Classic Commercial – EJ Ute – Wal
- Modified / Hot Rod – Ford Tudor – Mark and Vicki Muller
- Motorcycle – Harley Davidson Fatboy – Jeff Evans
- Modern – (Car 69)
- Club Attendance – Goomeri Chrome Bumpers