Champions race to Avalon opener
CURRENT Australian sprintcar champion James McFadden heads the list of nominations to contest the opening round of the Sprintcar Series at Avalon Raceway tomorrow night.
A field of 47 nominations has been received for the event that also doubles as the first round of the Sprintcar premiership, with a new car the major prize for the season-long points battle.
At 21, McFadden became the youngest driver to win the national title when he defeated a stellar field in May at Darwin’s Northline Speedway.
McFadden led home Victorian Stephen Bell, who is also among the entries for tomorrow night at Avalon.
Four-time and defending Eureka Series champion John Vogels leads the Victorian contenders as he shoots for a fifth series title.
Vogels captured last season’s Eureka Series championship by virtue of a consistent year, defeating Mike Van Bremen and Jamie Veal.
Van Bremen broke through for a pair of feature wins at Avalon Raceway last summer and will look to continue his recent good form at the venue.
Jamie Veal was awarded the most improved driver last summer in Victoria after an excellent year that netted the Victorian Sprintcar aggregate for the best performed driver at every Sprintcar event last season.
Veal will look to begin the new season strongly following a recent trip to America that saw him compete in meetings against the best drivers in the world.
NSW standout Jeremy Cross will make the trip south to Avalon from Dubbo and following an excellent performance at the Easter Trail will be keen for further improvement.
Sydney’s Matt Young will also compete having raced at the venue previously in a speedcar, however, this weekend he will be at the wheel of the immaculate Rocket Industries #6.
‘‘It’s looking like an exciting start to the year with so many cars nominating for the first round of both the Essendon Ford Sprintcar Premiership and the Eureka Series,’’ Avalon Raceways’ Jeff Drew says.
‘‘It’s such a great field with Grant Anderson also among the starters as well as Darren Mollenoyux, who is always quick. Nick Lacey will keep getting better and Domain Ramsay is also fresh from racing in the US.’’
Several South Australians are also among the entries, ensuring a solid interstate feel to the event.
Modified production sedans will support the popular sprintcars.
Fast and furious: defending Eureka Sprintcar Series champ John Vogels will begin his series defence tomorrow night. Picture: Corey Gibson