IT CAME down to a thrilling final two laps that would see Matt Jackson win his first Victorian Speedcar Championship at Heytesbury Stockfeeds Simpson Speedway.
The Sydney driver started in position three and hung around the top three for most of the 25-lap feature race and a desperate charge for the lead on polesitter Travis Mills late paid off.
Racing into turn four with two laps to run Jackson made contact with Mills and came out in front. Mills had no answer for Jackson, and he again proved his talent with a 0.159 of a second win in the
76th running of the Victorian Speedcar Championship from multiple title winner Mills and Nick Parker third.
“I just threw a haymaker. Millsy got bouncy in three and four and I just sent it,” Jackson said.
The TJ Race Chassis Stampede Series for Formula 500s was a win to the hard driving Max Owen of Warrnambool.
Polesitter Dylan Willsher led lap one and that was it for him as Owen from three took over quickly and got away from Willsher and pretty much that was really it for the 25-lap race. The speed and perfect lap after lap from young Owen were a very steady and mature drive for 24 laps saw him withstand challenges. In the end though he would grab a solid victory from seasoned campaigner Tim Rankin of Simpson and Willsher third.
Series leader Jordan Rae loomed as a likely challenger for the front, but he clipped the right rear of Rankin and rolled and was out of race contention on the final lap.
After the race Owen said “the cautions got me worried. I just wanted to get the restarts right.”
Lilydale’s Tyler Maggs again showed his liking of the Simpson raceway with another gutsy drive in the final of the Formula 500s Juniors 20 lap final.
Koby O’Shannassy took a handy lead from pole position for the first 10 laps and looked on track to victory. Maggs was in hot pursuit as was Max Bevan and Zoe Pearce. Maggs drove around O’Shannassy as did Bevan while Pearce held fourth with Dakota Luckett in fifth.
Again, Maggs did everything right and credited the win to his legendary grandfather Jack Maggs and father Daryn post-race.
“I need to again thank pa and dad. For me I was just trying to focus on getting a good start and the lead.”
The “Green Night” was a success with people getting behind the cause of raising awareness and funds for The Gillin Boys Foundation- Muscular Dystrophy Awareness Warrnambool by wearing green, buying green shoelaces and contributing to the donation tins and raffles throughout the night.
With the fun factor of Gavin White being renamed Gavin “Green” for the night was also a fun highlight. With Ash Gillin, the father of Chris who is unable to travel the distance in the car anymore being able to give the 4 wide signal with Gav, was a pretty special moment. “It’s great to have the support of Simpson Speedway to be able to raise awareness…and I know Chris will be loving this at home.”
The next race meeting at Heytesbury Stockfeeds Simpson Speedway will be on April 9, 2022, with a round of the SRA 360 Sprintcars Triple Crown Series, the Merrett Family Trophy Race for Wingless Sprints and Street Stocks.
ALL PHOTOS TAKEN BY AIDAN FREEMAN