From Ian Vale
Hamilton, AU — (December 13, 2014) — The Sprintcar Racing Association of Victoria 360 Sprintcar Gold Cup went to Brenten Farrer last night at Western Speedway Hamilton in a race that was hard fought but also had a few dramas along the way, second home was Phil Lock while James Gardiner was awarded third place after Dion Bellman was disqualified for being under weight at the completion or the race.
On a very hot afternoon and an early start for the 360 Sprintcar Gold Cup race meeting the drivers ventured out for their engine starts and hot laps to get a feel for the Western Speedway surface that the venue operators had worked hard on it in the hot sun to try and give the drivers a good race track.
Nineteen sprintcars lined for the qualifying heats that would see four different heat winners, Michael Cunningham, Daniel Evans, Brenton Farrer and Phil Lock who took a heat win each but is was Victorian Phil Lock who had done enough in both his heat races to be the top point scorer of the evening.
A top six shootout was next up and the young South Australian Daniel Evans was the mover of the top six drivers to take pole position for the Gold Cup, with the shootout over the top six starting order would be Daniel Evans in pole position, Phil Lock in P2 to be followed by Brenton Farrer, Chris Evans (Farther of Daniel) Michael Cunningham and Andy Hibbert.
Eighteen sprintcars rolled onto the track to take the start of the Gold Cup and Daniel Evans won the start at the drop of the green flag from Lock to lead the first lap, lap two and Farrer had passed Lock for second while Cunningham had passed Chris Evans to move up into fourth place and Dion Bellman had also moved up a from his eight place to now be into sixth place. Three laps down and the caution light was on for Bill Fraser who spun to a stop in turn three, Ross Jarrad was deemed the primary cause for this incident that would see both Fraser and Jarrad restart at the back of the field.
Back under way and Daniel Evans was setting a cracking pace out front and was moving away from his opposition leaving Farrer, Lock and Cunningham to fight over second and third places. Wayne Logue had found a way past Brad Foster to move into ninth spot when disaster would strike for the race leader when moving into lap traffic, Bill Fraser spun coming out of turn two right in front of Daniel Evans leaving him with nowhere to go but into Fraser that would put both cars out of the race.
With the field reformed and ready for the restart Logue would also roll to the infield with a flat right rear tire and out of the event.
Green flag once more and the new leader was now Brenten Farrer followed by Lock in second and Cunningham in third who was try everything he could to pass Lock, Chris Evans was in fourth place ahead of Dion Bellman, James Gardiner and Andy Hibbert, rounding out the running order as Brad Foster, rookie driver Brayden Parr, Rory Button, Luke Nash, Ross Jarrad, Corey Lincoln and Chris Best.
Best was the next driver to bring on the caution lights for the final time after making heavy contact with the turn one wall to put an end to his night. At the restart the order was Farrer, Lock, Cunningham and now Bellman who was knocking on Cunningham’s door trying to make a pass, as the laps wound down the order stayed much the same with Farrer out in clean air. Cunningham was not giving up on trying to take second place from Lock then with three laps to go he made an attempt to gain ground for the pass only to drift high and allow both Bellman and Gardiner through.
As the chequered flag fell it was Brenten Farrer taking the win in the SRA 360 Gold Cup from Phil Lock in second and Dion Bellman in third ahead of Gardiner and Cunningham, round out the finishing order were Evans, Foster, Parr, Nash, Button, Jarrad and Lincoln.
After a quick celebration with a couple of donuts from Farrer in was off to the scales for the top four drivers to make the placing’s official, Farrer and Lock weighed in and were cleared but is was Dion Bellman that was found to be underweight and was subsequently disqualified from the event moving James Gardiner who had also meet the correct weight to third place.
It was a very happy top three that were presented with the 2014 SRA 360 Sprintcar Gold Cup Trophies, when it was all said and done the 360 Gold Cup event was yet another great night of action at Western Speedway Hamilton with the exception of the disappoints for both Daniel Evans and Dion Bellman.
The next event on the SRA calendar is Round four of the Eureka Garages and Sheds Sprintcar Series at Premier Speedway Warrnambool for the twin feature night with another quality field of competitors on Saturday the 20thth of December.