Saturday, 26 May 2018


Having started the season with trophy day at Ballarat's Redline Raceway, the SDAV Hot Rod troupe headed up to Moama's Heartland Raceway for the opening Thunder Down Under Series round recently and in an action-packed event coming out on top was Jason May taking victory over Victorian Champion Dean West on the final lap.

11 cars and their drivers greeted the starter in heat-race one of three. Kali Hovey and her husband Shannon Meakins from the front row with Graeme ‘Bigfoot’ Briggs at the very back. Hovey led her husband around lap one with Jason May, her father Russell Hovey and Phil Jenkins completing the top-five finishers. Glenn Lawless (# 99 Wally’s Fabrications) spun in turn three on lap three. At the restart, Hovey still led Meakins, however Jason May had slipped backwards and Russell Hovey now claimed third with Jenkins and then West the top five. On lap four, West passed Russell Hovey, while Jenkins had passed Russell Hovey into third.

On lap five, Jenkins moved into second spot passing Meakins; however, nobody was able to pass Kali Hovey. She held the lead through to the eighth and final lap to win from Jenkins, Meakins, West, Russell Hovey (# 25 Ribeau Interstate Transport Carriers), Lawless, Jamie May, Jason May and Briggs while Stan Marco Jnr failed to finish due to a puncture and Stan Marco threw a fan belt.

With Stan Marco unable to start heat-race two, West moved into pole position with Jamie May alongside and the Hovey’s and Meakins close behind. West made the most of the boost to the front row to lead lap one from Jamie May, Meakins, Russell Hovey and Kali Hovey.

Lawless on lap two moved ahead of Russell Hovey and Jason May and into fifth and then Jason May came back on lap three. Towards the end of the race a couple of spins and then a two-car rollover involving Stan Marco Jnr (# 2 Darby Paints) and Jenkins. The race was declared with West the winner from Meakins, Jason May, Kali Hovey, Lawless, Jamie May and Briggs with Russell Hovey failing to finish with steering issues.

In the last chance to earn points before the feature race, Jason May and Lawless started at the front of the field with West and Jamie May behind them. This time Jason May got the run into turn one and around lap one with Lawless chasing in second and West back in third. An incident with West spinning then caused Stan Marco Jnr to connect with Kali Hovey resulting in a flat to her car. West went to the rear of the field.

Jason May led lap three with Lawless, then West who was quick to get back to third ahead of Meakins and Jamie May. West moved to second on lap four whilst Jamie May had his ignition fail him and he pulled out of the race. Jamie May passed later in the race and moved into second. West the winner from Jamie May, Meakins, Lawless, Marco Jnr and Briggs (# 88 Clegg Drive Panel Service). Russell Hovey’s steering failed him again and he was unable to finish.

With top qualifiers to the front in the feature race, West had qualified from pole with Meakins, Kali Hovey, Jamie May, Lawless, Jason May, Russell Hovey, Stan Marco Jnr and Briggs the line up.

West led lap one from Meakins, Kali Hovey, Jamie and Jason May. West led strongly through the half way mark while Jason passed Jamie May on lap seven. On lap eight, Meakins spun in turn four and by then the placings had changed after various moves with West in front of Jason May, Marco Jnr, Kali Hovey and Jamie May.

On the very final lap of 12, Jamie May made a pass on West and sprinted to the line to take the win from West, Marco Jnr, Jamie May, Kali Hovey, Lawless, Meakins and Briggs. Russell Hovey a non finisher with steering issues while of course Jenkins and Marco didn’t start.

Laang Speedway was the host of the second round of Thunder Down Under Series action earlier this month for the SDAV Hot Rods and the challenging and entertaining venue dished up a wonderful track which allowed outside passing for those that dared, one driver who rode the highline to perfection was Jason May who went on to take the feature-race win.

Chris Wilkes (# 13 Pro-Cote Powder Coating) joined the fray with his # 13 car as the amount of new entrants into SDAV Hot Rod racing continues a climb, and Phil Jenkins put his # 3 car back together after damage previously and was ready to challenge for a win.

Speaking of Jenkins, he began from pole position for the opening heat race with Jason May alongside, Shannon Meakins, Stan Marco, Jamie May, Dean West, Kali Hovey (# 22 The Pizza Box Norlane), Stan Marco Jnr and Wilkes making up the field for the first heat race. Jenkins was quick to assume control on lap one with Meakins slipping into second ahead of Jason May with Jamie May and Marco next in line.

Jenkins (# 3 P & S Automotive) held the lead and was proving difficult to pass as Jason May faded way back through the field around lap five as Jamie May moved into third. Meakins had a brake fire on lap seven putting him out of contention while Marco passed Jamie May on lap ten for second spot behind Jenkins at the chequered flag. Jamie May was third, West, Jason May and Marco Jnr the other finishers. Wilkes didn’t finish breaking a jacob's ladder and Hovey on lap seven damaged a coil lead.

For heat-race two Hovey was back on track and she started from pole position with West alongside her. Jenkins the first heat winner began way back in seventh. Hovey led West (# 4 Ace Fencing), Marco, Meakins and Jamie May on lap one and carried this through to lap six before West, Marco and Meakins all passed her pushing her back to fourth on lap seven. Meakins moved up into second on lap nine and West greeted the flagman in victory with Meakins, Marco (# 5 Johnny Dyno Engines), Hovey, Jason May, Jamie May, Jenkins and Wilkes all finishing. Marco Jnr didn’t start due to ignition issues.

Marco was having a great run and a pole position start in the third heat helped his cause even further. Meakins began alongside, West on the next row and Jason May on the third and they were all set to give Marco a hurry up.

Marco led Meakins, West, Hovey and Jenkins on lap one through to three after a terrible start to Jason May. May passed Jenkins into fifth on lap three, then picked off Hovey the very next lap and three laps further into the race he passed the Victorian Champion West into third place.

Marco went on to win from Meakins, Jason May, West, Jamie May (# 8 Mega Auto Parts), Hovey and Jenkins whilst Marco Jnr still had ignition issues and Wilkes had suspension trouble.

With the top point scorers starting at the front of the feature-race field after a toss of a coin this put Marco, West, Meakins (# 84 Aarons Car Removals), Jenkins, Jason and Jamie May then Hovey, Marco Jnr and Wilkes into the starting field.

Marco got a great start and kicked away from West, Meakins, Jason May and Jenkins on lap one. Meakins then made a pass on West on lap two. Jason May (# 9 Ultima Shock Absorbers) then much like heat-race three started to pick off those in front of him after a slow start out of the gun. He past West into third on lap four, Meakins into second on lap six before the Meakins got him back the very next lap and May rocketed high around Meakins and Marco and into the lead on lap eight.

May would go on to take his second feature-race win from two starts with Marco a fantastic second, Meakins, West, Jamie May, Jenkins and Hovey all finished.

Marco Jnr had an engine misfire and Wilkes still had suspension issues and didn’t finish.

The SDAV Hot Rods now head to Bairnsdale Speedway to do battle on January 14, with Rushworth Speedway for the Ray Welsh Memorial looming on February 4.

The SDAV Hot Rod club thanks the supporters for the 2016-17 season:
Mega Auto Parts
Ribeau Interstate Transport Carriers
Air Anywhere – Truck Tyres
Puurfect Cool Auto Air

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