By Daniel Powell
Although he holds down a solid lead in the Sydney Speedway Sprintcar Track Championship and last weekend recorded his third feature race victory of the season; Ben Atkinson insists that he isn’t playing the points game and the main goal is to just get into victory lane as much as possible.
Since linking up with infamous car owner and former 10 times Australian Sprintcar Champion Garry Rush at the beginning of the season aboard the NSW # 2 Pick ‘N Payless / Rush Auto Parts supported J&J; the Northern Territory based racer has been one of the form drivers on the Sydney Speedway scene and as a result he currently leads the track championship point standings.
“Our aim for this season has always been to just bring home as many good results as possible and so far we’ve been going pretty good despite a few minor hiccups along the way,” Atkinson said, who is currently contesting his first full season at Sydney Speedway after many seasons of making irregular appearances at the venue. “It’s nice to be leading the track championship and I’m not worrying about that as all I want to do is continue picking up good results and the point standings will take care of themselves.”
Atkinson admits, aside from running for a first class operation owned by Garry Rush, that working with legendary crew chief John Barrett and his regular crew chief over the past five seasons Tim ‘Moth’ Gleeson has played a significant role in this season’s success.
“This is a dream ride running for Garry Rush and being able to work with JB [John Barrett] and my normal crew chief Moth [Tim Gleeson] has been an absolute pleasure too and they [JB and Moth] both complement each other,” commented Atkinson, who also regards being the highest placed Australian driver in the $50,000 to Win Scott Darley Memorial event earlier this year as one of the highlights of his season thus far. “Having a great team around me has allowed me to focus more on my driving at the track, but it’s also allowed me to focus more on my business commitments back home and it’s all working out pretty well.”
The Sydney Speedway Track Championship continues this Saturday night (February 12) for the latest round.
Atkinson would like to thank Garry Rush, John Barrett and Tim Gleeson for all their support, along with sponsors: Pick ‘N Payless, Rush Auto Parts, Castrol Oil, PASS Powder Coating & Sandblasting, and Hydrokleen.