WORLD Series Sprintcars made a successful return to Castrol Edge Lismore Speedway on Tuesday, January 14 in front of a big crowd as series leader James McFadden scored an emphatic victory in the 35-lap main event.
On a track that offered passing on both the high and low lines, McFadden was the class act after he came from position eight and led American Cory Eliason and third-placed Kerry Madsen to the chequered flag.
McFadden was especially delighted to get the round ten win in front of not only such a large crowd, but also a local sponsor of the team, Daniel Trucking.
“It's great to get the win from eight,” an elated McFadden said on the victory dais. McFadden described the track layout as “technical” and said for the early part of the race “I was just following everyone around on the bottom.”
But then he found the fast line and really started motoring as he advanced his position in the field.
It was in contrast to the earlier events in the team's bid to find the right set-up for the testing, circular Lismore Showground bull ring circuit. “We struggled all night, really,” McFadden claimed. “But it all came good in the end and the win was really cool.”
Eliason also made his way through the field for his solid second placing. He felt he may have been able to possibly snare the lead away from McFadden in the latter stages, but said a lapped car slowed his progress at a crucial time.
“The lapped car baulked my line and he had nothing for me. I thought we were going to get James there maybe right at the finish.”
For Madsen it was a tough night at the office.
He smacked the wall hard after he completed his time trial lap and the Krikke Team had plenty of work to do to ensure Madsen was at his competitive best when he returned to the track. They replaced the fuel tank and many suspension components as a result of the crash.
But Madsen made the most of his opportunities for the remainder of the night. A strong performance in the shoot-out left him with a very favourable up front starting position in the field for the feature race.
Madsen was on the pace at the start and blasted to the lead followed by outstanding performer in such class company, Rusty Hickman, while Luke Oldfield also was in contention in the early laps.
Jock Goodyer held down a solid fourth, followed by Brooke Tatnell, Eliason, David Murcott and Sam Walsh as the race unfolded.
The positions continually changed – none more significant than at the head of the field as Hickman made his bid for victory.
But McFadden was on a charge. Using both the high and low lines he moved into second, while Eliason was up to fourth and looked certain to improve his position. It set the scene for a thrilling finish.
McFadden later commanded the lead as the laps ran out, while Elison settled for second. Meanwhile Madsen, after dropping to fourth at one stage, managed to sneak into the top three with a late pass on Hickman and claimed third. The other American in the field, Lucas Wolfe, finished eleventh.
Heat wins went to Madsen, Goodyer, Hickman and Oldfield. Earlier in the night, Murcott was fastest in time trials when he stopped the clocks at 11.809 seconds.
The superb race ran virtually incident free, except for a yellow light midway through the event. Promoter David Lander later described the attendance as “the best crowd I've had in ten years.”
Main events for the support categories on the programme were taken out by Ryley Smith (Junior Sedans), Jordan Biviano (Production Sedans), Trent Martin (Wingless Sprintcars).