Thursday, 21 September 2017

STREET STOCKS

Arguably one of the toughest classes throughout the country, which continues to produce extremely competitive racing, it wasn’t easy, but we’ve managed to compile a list of our top-10 Street Stock drivers throughout the 2016-17 season.

1. Anthony Beare (SA)
While he wasn’t able to defend his National Title, Beare was this season’s toughest competitors, coming away with a total of eight feature-race wins. Proving his versatility by partnering with Dan Salter, in addition to racing his own car, Beare drove to victory in two of the biggest events on the Street Stock calendar – the WA Title and Brian Rose Memorial – while also taking out the Victorian Title, the Gold Rush and the overall Street Stocks National point score, as well as coming home second in the Queensland Title.

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2. Rhys Heinrich (SA)
Playing the role of the new kid on the block this season amongst his more experienced counterparts, 21-year-old Heinrich was a genuine front-running contender, reaching a new level of competitiveness throughout the season, achieving a new career highlight when he was crowned National Champion at Kingaroy Speedway. He also drove to victory in the Paige McCarthy-Beard Memorial at Mildura’s Timmis Speedway, along with finishing second in the SA Title and third in the Victorian Title, proving that he is a deserving recipient of the runner-up spot in our rankings.

3. Mark Jennings (SA)
Teaming up with the Patriot Motorsport team in 2016-17, after a number of seasons on the sidelines, Jennings quickly found his feet, managing to get five feature-race wins under his belt this season, including the Street Stock 1000, despite not having contested an abundance of shows. The former National Champion also picked up a fourth-place result in the National Title at Kingaroy Speedway and placed third in the overall Street Stocks National point score.

4. Matt Nelson (Vic)
It was a big 2016-17 season for the well-travelled racer, who broke through to win his maiden state title in May, seizing the SA Title crown at Waikerie’s Sunline Speedway. Proving that he is a regular front-runner, the youngster also placed second in the Victorian Title and fourth in the Queensland Title, where he slipped out of podium contention after attempting a late-race challenge on his rivals while battling for the lead.

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5. Brad McClure (Vic)
One of the country’s most travelled racers, McClure was another strong performer this season, managing to come away with second overall in the Street Stocks National point score, a third-place result in the Brian Rose Memorial, while also placing third in the Queensland Title, fourth in the Victorian Title and a solid fifth in the National Title.

6. Jamie Oldfield (WA)
Having driven to five feature-race victories throughout the season, continuing his mantle as one Australia’s most talented drivers, Oldfield was in fine form in the National Title, battling for the lead with Beare in an unfamiliar car, before experiencing heartbreaking power steering issues which ultimate dashed his hopes. Coming home second to Beare in the Brian Rose Memorial, Oldfield also placed third in the annual Race of Champions at Collie Speedway, and had been leading the WA Title for a short stint, before suffering a flat tyre.

7. Lenny Bates (Vic)
Doing his fair share of travelling this season, Bates’s best result came when he scored a well-deserved runner-up result in the National Title at Kingaroy Speedway in Queensland, having also previously travelled to the track to get some laps under his belt prior to the National Title event, coming away with a feature-race win. A definite standout this season, the Victorian also scored a fifth-place result in the Victorian Title.

8. Hayden Norman (WA)
Collecting seven feature-race wins and consistently running towards the pointy end of the field, Norman has been one of the driver’s to beat in his home state this season. Starting out of sixth for the WA Title, Norman was unfortunate to become the first retiree of the feature race, suffering a flat tyre when he drifted high on lap two.

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9. John Lodge Jnr. (NSW)
Despite contesting a limited schedule this season, Lodge Jnr. was certainly one to on the pace. Qualifying third for the National Title at the large showground track in Kingaroy, Lodge Jnr. managed to retain his starting position during the hard-fought feature race.

10. Darren Giacometti (Vic)
After many years of racing, 2016-17 delivered Giacometti with his breakout season and a new career highlight, with the racer finally managing to achieve his first victory in a major event, taking an upset victory in what was a thrilling Queensland Title at Gympie’s Mothar Mountain Speedway, after taking control of the lead on the frantic final lap.

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