Perrett Learning the Ropes
Photo: Savage Shots Photography
With a dozen race meetings under her belt during her debut season in 360 Sprintcars, teenager Cheian Perrett is gaining a wealth of knowledge during her introduction to the class and is continuing to build her race craft with the assistance of some experienced individuals.
Making the big step straight into 360 Sprintcars from Dirt Karts, where she spent seven years racing across South Australia, the 17-year-old racer is thoroughly enjoying her venture into the Sprintcar environment this season, as well as the adrenaline that comes with it, but it’s the invaluable experiences and knowledge she’s gained that has bolstered her throughout her maiden season.
A participant of the 2018 Speedway Australia Rising Star Program, Perrett recently spent three days at the intensive camp in Canberra where she learnt about the importance of fitness in racing, marketing and public speaking, performance psychology and more, giving her the foundations to be able to improve on numerous levels throughout future seasons.
While the program equipped her with a significant amount of theoretical advice, it’s the practical assistance from two of South Australia’s current and former renowned Sprintcar drivers in Ryan Jones and 1997 Grand Annual Classic winner Trevor Green that Perrett has been able to apply at the track and in the shed.
“The help that I’ve received from Ryan and Trevor in terms of how to set the car up and how to drive it has really given me some added confidence in the car,” commented Perrett, who does as much of her own car maintenance as she can, with Jones having taught her about engine upkeep, amongst other things.
“The Rising Star Program was also hugely beneficial for me as it gave me an insight into things I hadn’t thought about before when it comes to racing, such as fitness and marketing. In addition to Ryan and Trevor, I have to say a big thanks to my dad (Scott) who has always believed in me. I wouldn’t be doing this without him.”
With Jones having first worked with the Perrett Family Racing team during the 2015-16 season when he was hired to set up once of their Triple X cars, the relationship progressed at the beginning of this season when team owner Scott purchased a 360 engine from Jones and once again hired the driver to assist Cheian with setup during her debut.
When the Lewiston, South Australian-based team purchased an ex-Krikke Motorsport 410 engine, an offer was made to Jones to fill the driver’s seat for selected race meetings, with the four-time Australian 360 Sprintcar Champion, who has over a decade of experience racing Sprintcars, contesting the President’s Cup and the King’s Challenge at Mount Gambier’s Borderline Speedway, where he unfortunately experienced power steering issues.
Following a club show at Murray Bridge Speedway which saw Jones win the feature race aboard his family-own car, Scott then decided to purchase two new Triple X chassis, one of which he immediately brought to Jones to build one week prior to the Queensland Title at Brisbane’s Archerfield Speedway.
After testing the car briefly at Murray Bridge Speedway, Jones was competitive from the outset, coming home fourth fastest in time trials during the opening night of competition, winning his first heat race and placing fourth in the other, which was enough to earn him pole position for the preliminary feature race. Unable to be stopped throughout the distance, Jones led each of the 20 laps to collect the 28th feature-race win of his Sprintcar career, and the first for Scott as a car owner.
Returning to the track on Sunday night, Jones qualified into the pole shootout after a decent performance in his heat races, coming away with first place before once again lining up in pole position for the Queensland Title-deciding feature race. Leading for seven of the scheduled 35 laps, Jones slipped back to third over the next five laps before an unfortunate coming together with Mick Saller while the pair was attempting to navigate traffic brought his night to a premature end.
“We are absolutely thrilled with Ryan’s performance at the Queensland Title, despite Sunday night’s results, and for him to have achieved the team’s maiden feature-race win is a huge achievement,” expressed Scott Perrett.
“With the setup being completed by Ryan and Glenn Inglis from Sprint Shack, the car didn’t miss a beat throughout the event and it’s great to know that it’s capable of winning.
“Not only has Ryan’s addition to the team bolstered us in terms of our results, the help that he and Trevor (Green) have given to Cheian has been invaluable in terms of building her skills as a driver, as well as her setup knowledge, and we’re very grateful for that.”
With the Perrett Family Racing team planning to continue their relationship with Jones next season, the driver will be completing close to a dozen 410 Sprintcar race meetings, including the Chariots of Thunder Series at Darwin’s Northline Speedway in the Northern Territory over the month of August and potentially the Scott Darley Challenge at Sydney’s Valvoline Raceway (NSW) in January next year, while Cheian will continue her career in 360 Sprintcars, contesting the full All Stars Series schedule, with continued assistance from Jones and Green.
Perrett Family Racing are proudly supported by the following 2017-18 season sponsors: Lewiston Haulage, Maxwill Racing Engines, Murray Machinery & Sheds, Access Capital, Adelaide Interstate, Elders insurance Gawler, Verdons Transport, Rob Sinclair Equipment Finance, Triple X Race Co, Sprint Shack (Glenn Inglis), Damien Brown, Freightmaster, and Lonsdale Competition Tyres.
To find out more about Jones, Perrett and the whole team, LIKE them on Facebook by searching P.F.R Perrett Family Racing.