The Western Australian duo of Chad Pittard (pictured below) and Ash Hounsfield have served notice to their rivals heading into this weekend’s Australian Wingless Sprint Championship at Warrnambool’s Premier Speedway, with the Pittard Racing team drivers topping the time sheets in this afternoon’s practice sessions.
Having never competed at the south-western Victoria track, the Bunbury-based duo didn’t let that faze them and they went on to record the two fastest laps of the 27 practice sessions. Pittard emerged fastest with a best lap of 14.281 seconds, while Hounsfield’s fastest lap was good enough for second (14.288).
Photo: 44 Photography
Behind the surprise packets of Pittard and Hounsfield were the South Australian trio of Jarmin Dalitz, Brett Ireland and Kirby Hillyer.
The best of the Victorians was Sam Wren in sixth ahead of another South Australian in Anthony Tapley, and the top 10 was completed by veteran and current Vic # 2 Tony Moule (Vic), last season’s Victorian Champion Travis Millar (Vic) and current Tasmanian Champion Luke Redpath (Tas).
Current and two-time Australian Champion Joel Chadwick (SA) posted the 25th fastest lap from the four practice sessions that he took part in.
A total of 79 of the 108 nominated Australian Championship drivers took part in practice, with notable drivers not taking part being current Victorian Champion Luke Storer, Daniel Storer, Dayn Bentvelzen and Luke Weel.
At tonight’s Calcutta for the Australian Championship that was held the nearby Deakin University in Warrnambool and was impressively attended by over 350 people. Over $8000 was raised during the auction, with Chadwick going for the highest amount of $800 followed by Millar and Weel going for $700 each.
Getting underway with scrutineering, practice and the calcutta on Thursday, February 21 the last of the scrutineering will be completed on the morning of Friday, February 22 before drivers contest two rounds of heat races on Friday night, with the top-40 drivers in the point standings going on to complete two odds and evens preliminary feature races.
The first four finishers in these preliminary feature races will qualify directly into Saturday night’s feature race and will compete in the Champions A-Scramble to determine their starting positions.
Following the opening night of competition, the top 96 cars in points, excluding the eight drivers who have already qualified for the feature race, will return to the track on the Saturday night of February 23 to contest a final round of heat races. The top 8 in points will then qualify directly into the feature race and will compete in the Mid-Pack B-Scramble to determine their starting positions.
The next 32 drivers in the point standings will qualify directly into two B mains, while other competitors will contest one of four non-qualifier events to determine qualifications into the D main and two C mains, with the top four in each main progressing through to the back of the next main.
Once these mains are complete and the final feature-race transferees are confirmed, 24 drivers will take to the track for the 40-lap Australian Championship feature race.
For more information about the AWSR, visit their website at www.awsr.com.au or LIKE them on Facebook or Follow them on Instagram and Twitter by searching Australian Wingless Sprint Racing.