Sprintcar Records Tumble at Avalon Raceway – Steven Lines Cleans Up.

After a washout 3 weeks ago at the Sprintcar Invitational, Avalon ran their second Sprintcar meeting of the season last Saturday 12th Nov – only this time we got the entire meeting in and track records tumbled on what was the best, hookiest track that Avalon has ever created.

It was a lightening quick track in the end, helped by substantial mid-week rains and some crafty curator work on the Saturday. There was heaps of moisture trapped in the clay and come Top 6 Time Trials to decide the A Main starting line up, the surface had dialled in perfectly.

It was brilliant. No dust, no mud, no ruts and most importantly the cars were getting it down to the ground. The feature race also served as the 4th round of the Eureka Sprintcar Series.

It was a whopping turnout of Sprintcars too. 50 cars had nominated (410’s, some 360’s and the odd 372). That car count pushed the program to a C Main format.

Good weather, 50 cars and one hell of a fast track was the order of the day

The C Main took some time to get going with a massive multi car pile up as they headed down the straight and commenced entry into turn one. It was that typical concertina affect. Casualties were high with 7 retirees recorded before one full lap had been completed. The entire outside row was reduced to just 2 cars on the restart.

David "BUZZ" Aldersley running a 372 CI motor was competitive in the heats and started up the front of the C Main - unfortunately through no fault of his own "Buzz" got caught up in the opening lap incident and was forced to retire

The B Main saw Grant Anderson (V37), Ricky Barrand (V61), Jeremy Cross (N39), Darren Mollenoyux (V77), Jamie Veal (V35), and Brett Milburn (V68) transfer to the A Main.

Earlier in the evening the 10 lap track record was smashed in one of the heats. For the life of me I can’t recall who the successful pilot was, and I couldn’t hear the time over the PA. Fat lot of use I am !!

The top 6 time trials for A Main placings were scintillating. The 1 Lap record stood at a very respectable 11.29 seconds (Ian Louden – NSW back in 2008).

Ryan Davis (V95) broke it first with an 11.13, then SA young gun Daniel Pestka (S27) with a 11.08, and then finally after some quick changes in the pits with shocks, Stephen Lines came out and recorded an incredible 10.93 seconds – the first sub 10 second lap in Avalon’s history. That was an almightily feat and I would say won’t be surpassed for a very, very long time – if at all !!!!!!

SECRET SHOCKS ? - Just before being pushed out for the Top 6 time trials, the Stephen Lines' Crew frantically changed shocks on the rear - A decision that was unquestionably a key factor in smashing the 1 Lap record into the 10 second bracket - HOW COOL ! (New record set at 10.93 seconds)

"Rad" Set up complete - Steven Lines gets pushed out just before he smashed the Avalon 1 Lap record

The lap looked smooth and no question was quick, but when I asked Stephen at the end of the night did he know at the time it was a “blinder” he said “The car felt good, but it didn’t feel that quick. I knew it was a good lap, don’t get me wrong, but to go into the 10 second barrier was a surprise. We had a great car and it was locked down to the track”

So with that done, the front row for the 30 Lap A Main was Stephen Lines and Daniel Pestka, followed by Ryan Jones and Jonny Vogels (V70). James McFadden (2010 Australian Sprintcar Champion) started out of 10 in the 18 car field.

Totally Work Wear Team Owner Scott Milling fielded two cars at Avalon - W25 for Son Taylor and NQ25 for 2010 Australian Sprintcar Champion James McFadden (Black tank)

Taylor Milling (left) & James McFadden - upbeat with the two car team

Daniel Pestka got the jump on Lines at the start and cleared out to a decent 6 car lead. Pestka’s car looked quicker at that early stage. With 4 laps down Pestka driving like a man possessed tagged the wall down the main straight, and lost his right rear. At the restart, Lines took the ascendancy and drove a brilliant race through traffic. The race was punctuated with a Mike Van Bremen spin on turn 1 with 13 laps down, and an exploding right rear on Brett Millburn’s rig on turn 3 with just 7 laps to go.

Each time Lines got the jump on the restart and he drove a cool headed race to hold off 5 time Eureka Series Champion Jonny Vogels, Tim Rankin, James McFadden and Stephen Bell who pulled into the pits after the race with a completely knackered Jacobs ladder and right rear shock after contact during the race.

Four Wide Salute prelude to the A Main - L to R front: Pestka, Vogels, Davis and Lines

Sweet Victory - Steven Lines cleaned up convincingly in the V45 J&J


Steven Lines (left) was in a class of his own. Johnny Vogels (Centre) was 2nd followed by Tim Rankin

Hard charger would have to go to Darren Mollenoyux who qualified from the B Main, started 16 th and came in 7 th.

What a night ! What a track !

She was FAST !

It was simply awesome to see.

"Avalon Irony" - Steven Lines Walks 'N Talks with "Skeeter" from the Jonny Vogels Team before the racing hostilities commenced - Lines would ultimately come 1st with Vogels taking 2nd

Steven Lines - Happy to see his Lotto numbers include the #45 !!!!!

Top Team - Scott Milling's 2 car team fronted to the Eureka Series round 4 at Avalon

Jonny Vogels - 5 Times Eureka Series Champion bagged 2nd in the A Main 4th round event

Daniel Pestke was Super Fast early in the A Main - A young talent to watch for sure !

Couldn't help myself ! - Steven Lines was simply superb and I just had to congratulate him on the win. He drove to victory in his Dave Challons owned V45 J&J in spectacular style, and smashed the 1 lap record in time trials. The current Grand Annual Classic Champion was on fire - I understand that Steven will also drive for the Monte Motorsport Team (WA) this season. Indeed, Monte Motorsport will also have both Donny Schatz and Shane Stewart driving for this formidable team in 2011/12. LOOK OUT !


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