Booker bags Darlington thriller

While the field size was reduced it was a very competitive bunch that turned up to the racy little track located in the town of Darlington, Victoria, a town which no longer fields a cricket team or footy club but which has an awesome little speedway.

“The track was hooked up and in great condition,” Booker stated. “You couldn’t ask for anything more.”

“Late last year we tore the car up so it was good to get it back together and get another win,” he continued. “I really want to thank Barry Power, the Power boys, my sponsor I-Saw Concrete and my wife Renae. Without them we couldn’t go racing.”

Booker showed his intentions right from the start taking the win in the first heat from Glen Shaw and David Alford despite an hour and a half rain delay in the middle of it.

Shaw took the score in heat two from Justin McMinn who’d thrashed hard to repair his car after a big flip in the season opener at Avalon with Tasmanian champion Joe Lostitch third.

The final heat was another Booker win ahead of Nick Parker and McMinn.

Craig Smith suffered a catastrophic engine failure in his first heat and Mike Griffiths was lucky not to take a wild ride when a component failure saw him lose a wheel.

With the rain delaying things along the way, the club worked hard to recover the track and continue the event and to their credit the track was in great shape for the final and Shaw and Booker shared the front row from Parker, McMinn, Lostitch, Toby Smith, Alford, Brad Day and rookie Dillon Ghent.

Booker got the jump on Shaw at the drop of the green and then Parker pushed him back a further position on the next lap and that was how the top three finished the event although in between pulling wheelstands Parker mounted a serious challenge.

McMinn was an unlucky retirement when Alford spun in front of him leaving him nowhere to go, and then Toby Smith suffered steering failure that saw The #55 Smeast hit the wall hard bringing out the red lights and curtailing the final a few laps early.

Despite setting his fastest lap on what turned out to be the last lap (lap 20) Booker was only 0.303 seconds ahead at the line with Shaw less than a second back.

Lostitch, Day and Ghent completed the top six positions.

The next event for the time honoured club is the prestigious Beasley Memorial to be held at Avalon Raceway on November 25. This event annually draws a large field of quality local and interstate cars and this year’s event is expected to do the same.