Veal Is The New Australian 360ci Sprintcar Champ
Jamie Veal on the winners podium with Luke Dillon and Jason Kendrick (Phil Michell Photo for SCW)
Warrnambool’s Jamie Veal has captured his first ever Australian Sprintcar Championship as he led the entire 40 lap journey to win the 2017 Di Candilo Steel City Australian 360ci Sprintcar Championship at the Perth Motorplex. After qualifying on the pole position Veal got the jump over Jason Kendrick and from that point he wasn’t troubled as he went on to record a comfortable win.
Outgoing Australian Champion Luke Dillon put in a stunning drive to pass Jason Kendrick on the final turn to record a runner-up finish after starting from position 9 while Kendrick would finish third despite crashing his car in the outside wall as he crossed the line.
Former Australian Champion Chad Ely was another driver who was outstanding throughout the 40-lap final as he finished fourth after starting from position 19 after winning the B-Main. Shaun Bradford rounded out the top five with Tom Hooper, who had a solid weekend, being the first regular 360ci racer across the line in sixth. Mitchell Wormall, Ben Van Ryt, David Hall and Taylor Milling rounded out the top 10.
In what was a torrid final, that saw multiple red and yellow light stoppages, the crews were allowed onto the race track on lap 27 to refuel the cars as it was feared that they may not go the distance.
The cautions began as soon as the green flag was dropped as Troy Lawson rolled on the front straight with the incident involving David Hall and AJ Nash. David Hall required a right front tyre change while Lawson was out giving Ben Butcher a start in the main event.
The race would then settle down for the next 24 laps with the battle for the minor places being an intense one with Kaiden Manders getting the better of Jason Kendrick and Ben Ellement as the caution came out for Michael Keen who hit the turn four wall.
But while running second Manders race would soon be over as his right front stub axel broke with the wheel departing the race car. Two laps later his team mate Cameron Gessner would also be on the infield as a steering failure sent him into the turn two wall with the #68 car rolling.
It was at this point the cars were refuelled with the running order being Veal, Kendrick, Ellement, Dillon, Ely, Bradford, Daniel Keen and Wormall. Shortly after Ellement would retire with the race going green for the rest of the way with Veal winning ahead of a fast finishing Dillon and Kendrick.
Earlier the heat winners were Steven Ford, Kaiden Manders, Chad Ely, Jason Kendrick, Jamie Veal and Cameron Gessner while Ely and Daniel Keen transferred from the B-Main.