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MODIFIED SEDANS

Clint Noakes has quickly established himself as one of the drivers to beat in the Modified Sedan class in recent times.

Noakes and his Glenbrae Racing team have a big 2015-16 season schedule in store, which will see their Ford Falcon gracing many of the east coast tracks.

Modified Sedans WA media man, Allan Smallwood, recently caught up with the Margaret River-based Noakes.

Allan Smallwood: Clint, your Glenbrae Racing team has a big season planned racing on both sides of the country. Tell us about it?
Clint Noakes: This season we will mainly be racing Modified Sedans and scaling back our involvement with Production Sedans. We will run the first couple of rounds of the GWN7 Series prior to Christmas and then head over East in the New Year. We aren’t sure if we will take both our cars or I will just take my Falcon over. We plan on definitely being at the King’s Royal at Kingaroy Speedway, the Mildura Magic at Easter and the Australian Title at Lismore Speedway in late April. If we can fit more race meetings while the car is based over there, then we will. Unfortunately we will miss the Western Australian Title at Collie Speedway but we have really wanted to run the King’s Royal for a few years now. When we get back from the east coast hopefully we can race at Shark Bay in July and go to Broome once again to defend our Shinju Title.

AS: You kicked off the 2015-16 season in fine fashion by winning the Shinju Matsuri Modified Sedan Challenge in Broome; you seem to be on your game up there, would you agree?
CN: The event in Broome was one of the best I‘ve ever attended; we had a great time. We had a new engine for the show and what an engine it is. My crew, Hamish Macalpine and Josh Stewart, did a massive amount of work on the car the week prior and it paid off.

AS: Last season’s Western Australian Title at Carnarvon Speedway was a very challenging weekend for both you and your brother Matt. That must have been disappointing as you went into the event with high expectations?
CN: The Western Australian Title was very challenging particularly as we believed we had the car to win it but the engine let us down in practice. Our weekend didn’t get any better when Matt had similar problems in his second heat race. With a lot of effort and help from the Lyall family and our crew we managed to swap one engine and build another in time for the last heat race. Matt ended up third and I suffered a broken ball joint late in the race, so it was pleasing to at least get one of us on the podium after all the hard work.

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AS: Your Ford Falcon was built by Flash Race Cars down in Esperance, tell us about that relationship and what other components under the skin of your car help get you to the front of the field?
CN: Yes, Flash Race Cars have built us two cars now – with a new one on the way. Hamish (Macalpine) is great; he'll build anything you ask and he knows what's required to get the job done. It's a great product and the support never ends including continued updates to keep up with the latest technology. Greg Raymont at Cooroy Auto Wreckers builds the engine, and the car is at a new level since it's been fitted. We have a long-standing relationship with Genesis Shocks which we use with every car we have. The support from Craig and Brent Vosbergen at RACIN Tyres is excellent. Brent always goes the extra mile building our shocks to make sure we’re on the pace.

AS: Where do you see the state of Modified Sedan racing nationally and where do you think the class can improve going forward?
CN: Nationally I think Modified Sedans are in pretty exciting spot at the moment. Venues like Broome, Mildura and Portland are now putting up some big prize money for Modifieds and of course Kingaroy has had the King’s Royal event going for a while now. You also have the Golden Helmet Series, GWN7 Series, and the Summer Slam Series, so things are at a whole new level. There's a lot of young new talent coming through but I think more can be done to promote the class more. I’d like to see Speedway Sedans Australia get the product out there a bit. The class also maybe needs a touch up with the rule book in certain places to make the class more appealing.

AS: What class does Clint Noakes want to be racing in five years’ time?
CN: In five years hopefully the Bomber /Fender Bender class is going in Western Australia and we can give that a crack.

AS: Is there anybody you would like to thank for making this upcoming season possible?
CN: Yes, we can't compete at all without our support network. My immediate family and all of our long-time sponsors; the Raymont Racing family and Cooroy Engine Centre in Queensland; Craig and Brent at Genesis Shocks in Perth; Mycre Race car Graphics; Sid Whittaker from Sidtech; Glenbrae Trucking WA, and all of our valued crew and supporters.

The GWN7 WA Modified Sedans Series is set to get underway with the opening round at Moora Speedway on the Saturday night of November 21.