Glen Towers and Josh Harris #80 have opened their 2016 NSW Off-road championship campaign with a dominant 4min 34 second victory at Colo Park over the 24 car field on the weekend. Towers prologued 1st and after trailing Michael Spokes #116 by 8 seconds after the first 2 heats, an unfortunate Spokes withdrawal due to mechanical dramas gave Towers a comfortable break. Beginning Sunday morning’s 10 lapper just under 3 minutes in front, the brutal Brenthel recorded race wins in heat 4 & 5 for the perfect start to 2016. It was an impressive drive by Towers and Harris piloting the tight, rutted and dusty 7km Colo track without any problems, turning it on for the spectators who stood in awe as Glen full noise threw his car sideways into the corners behind the canteen!
Last weekend was not only round 1 of the NSW Off-road racing championship, but also Round 1 of the Offroad Warehouse SCOR Masters claimed by Towers and Harris. Josh Howells and Shane Szkoruda #115 in their Southern Cross prolite machine were the big improvers over the weekend. Starting race 1 from 9th position Josh made light work of the Colo Track jolting up into 2nd outright overnight. A consistent drive from the young local crew on Sunday, who made early inroads into Tower’s lead, until settling into a rhythm, ensured them 2nd outright and 1st in the Prolite class for their respective championships. A further 1min 41 secs arrear of Howells was Wayne Murphy and Gordon Triggs #85 in their Penhall MadFab pro buggy, Murphy who prologued 10th outright became more accustomed to his machine over the course of the weekend. They started day 2 in 4th position and after an early Sunday withdrawal of Justin Guy #19 and their own loss of 3rd gear and alternator failure late in race 5, they crossed in 3rd outright and 2nd in class.
Defending NSW Champion Derek Rose #179 ran his Southern Cross super 1650 machine as a single seater Prolite and was defending a 3rd outright in 2015. Wheelie fell just short in 2016 finishing in 4th outright and 2nd in class, a huge jump from finishing 12th in prologue, a great result considering the difference in horse power to his nearest rivals. Warren Barron, Teagan Barron and Mitchell Evans #258 were the 5th car home and a very well deserved 1st in super 1650 class. Starting day 2 in 7th place Warren found his groove in tough Colo condition finding the new transmission change to his liking banking some valuable championship points.
Murray Bignell #996 powered his chev powered buggy into 6th outright and 3rd in the Pro class, a consistent performance from the ‘Farmer’ who was over the moon with his race finish at a tough track. Following ‘Bignell’ home was the #985 of Peter Sowter in 7th position; he was supported by grandson Matt Turner who drove the 10 lapper Sunday morning. The Extreme 4wd class was taken out by veteran Lucky and daughter Angela Mattiussi #831 in their international scout, finishing 8th outright their reward for finishing full distance. Newcomers to the sport Daniel Jandera and Suzy Badawi #308 were the final car to complete full race distance in 9th position, doing so taking home the silverware for the Sportsman’s class. Rounding out the top 10 was Nathan and Les Chivers who dropped a lap late Saturday afternoon but repaired and put in blistering times Sunday to win the Superlite class after prologuing 3rd outright.
Drew Corcoran and Tony Nikora #777 took home the production 4wd class in their Blue Pajero, by only dropping one lap they finished 11th outright, dropping a few places from their overnight position of 6th. Phil Lovett #666 in his debut to offroading claimed 2nd in the Superlite class in his Can-am , whilst Tamworth based Adam Swindale and Casey McGregor #612 took home 3rd after a weekend of mechanical issues after showing early pace. Greg Barron #312 started Day 2 from 9th place and after blowing a clutch on late in the 10 lapper, they replaced and finished strong finishing 14th outright and 2nd in class. Mark Cowie and Brett Blackshaw #247 were struck with belt issues all weekend ending their hopes of a race finish, taking home 2nd in the super 1650 class and 16th outright. Other casualties were Brian Duck #95 after prologuing 4th with mechanical issues and Anthony Lia#220 with gearbox dramas.
For the Offroad Warehouse SCOR Masters the top 5 outright were same as NSW Championship however as the SCOR Masters was on the first 5 laps of the 10 lap heat, which included the multi club competitors 6TH place was scored by Glenn Hoffman #18 who had a troublesome weekend with electrical dramas, 7th to Drew Corcoran #777, 8th Peter Sowter, 9th Murray Bignell and 10th place went to Greg Barron #312.
The multi club round was won by locals David and Daniel Nikiforoff #190 on time over 2nd place Vern Wakefield and Joshua Irons #260, Mathew Nikiforoff and Karl Neil #390 claimed 3rd after suffering a early mechanical letdown after the first 2 races whilst 4th place went to Wayne Cains and Bruce Morrison.
The NSW Offroad championship now moves their attention onto Griffith for round 2 next month.