Welcome to the very first Aussie Watch column. Totally Speedway’s Daniel Powell is going to be bringing you this column on a weekly basis during the American season. Here’s this week’s first column.
Like the rest of the world, the coronavirus has well and truly impacted the American racing season, and just last weekend, there was a resumption of the 2020 season.
Here’s a rundown of the Australian drivers competing in America and where they are currently all at.
Kerry Madsen (NSW)
Driving for the Big Game Motorsport team, Madsen a fortnight ago made a return to the track, where he ran second in the $6,000 to win Open Wheel Nationals at the crowd-less Park Jefferson International Speedway (SD).
Over the weekend, the Knoxville Raceway (IA) began its 2020 season with the World of Outlaws Invitational event, which was held in front of no spectators. In the on-track action, Madsen was once again on the pace and was in front-running contention during the feature race up until he was sidelined on lap 12 with a flat tyre and recorded a DNF.
Ian Madsen (NSW)
Like his older brother, Madsen returned to the action a fortnight ago to contest the Open Wheel Nationals. In that event, he fought hard throughout the feature race and narrowly missed out on joining his older brother on the podium but had to settle for fourth.
Madsen was one of four Australian drivers who took part in the World of Outlaws Invitational event at Knoxville Raceway and came awfully close to taking out the feature-race spoils. Madsen, who had qualified on pole position for the feature race by virtue of winning the Dash, was battling with David Gravel for the win in the closing stages. Madsen held down the lead but as the 30-lap event neared the end, he made some driving errors that cost him the lead and he had to be content with a second-place finish behind Gravel.
“It’s devastating, to be honest,” said Madsen about his second-place finish, which was his fifth minor podium finish of the 2020 season.
“I gave it my all. I made a little error at the end. I got my wing too far back and I couldn’t get around the top of three and four. I really buried myself a couple of times and David (Gravel) got by. I can’t make that kind of mistake around him. I feel like we did ninety nine percent of everything right all night, and we just came up a little short. It’s great progress for this KCP Racing team this year.”
Brooke Tatnell (NSW)
Making his debut with the # 64 Scott Thiel Motorsport team that is owned by Scott Thiel during last weekend’s World of Outlaws Invitational event at Knoxville Raceway, Tatnell was a mid-pack runner all night. Despite qualifying directly into the feature race out of position 17, he failed to record a finish due to a mechanical issue.
Lynton Jeffrey (NSW)
Jeffrey was solid throughout last weekend’s World of Outlaws Invitational event at Knoxville Raceway and was rewarded with a seventh-place finish in the feature race.
After starting the feature race from position five at Knoxville Raceway and held his own throughout the 30-lap journey, which saw him finish in seventh.
Just as the world was shutting down due to coronavirus in early March, Jeffrey ran the 2020 season opener at Port Royal Speedway (PA). In the feature race, he recorded another seventh-place finish.
Peter Britten (Qld)
Like everyone in the motorsport world, Britten, who is flying the Australian flag in Big Block Modified competition, is frustrated about not getting to go racing. The best thing for Britten during this time was being able to run a practice night at Tri County Race Track (Brasstown, NC) over the weekend.
Scott Bogucki (SA)
Bogucki has yet to hit the track post coronavirus but is eager to get back to his 410 Sprintcar racing program shortly. An announcement regarding his amended 2020 schedule is expected soon. Prior to the coronavirus shutdown, Boguski had been running in the ASCS National Tour, where he had already recorded a pair of top-10 feature-race finishes.
James McFadden (Vic)
Currently stuck in Australia with no idea when the borders will be opened, McFadden is eagerly awaiting getting back to America as soon as possible to take up his place in the Kasey Kahne Racing 410 Sprintcar team and commence the 2020 season.