The Border Watch : January 16th 2015
50 DRAG RACING CaLL MarIjan TOs On (08) 8723 3231 VISIT US ONLINE borderwatch.com.au 660037 Tyres, Mags, rePaIrs & aLL 4X4 aCCessOrIes sUPPLIeD & FITTeD All brAnds 332 COMMerCIaL sT WesT www.mtwheels.com.au High octane motor sport EARL ASHLEY email@example.com of burning rubber and the roar of high performance engines will echo around Portland this weekend as drag racers across Australia push the limits. More than 140 of Australia’s best drag racers are competing in the Summit Racing and Sportsman Series Round 1 to welcome the 2015 ANDRA Championship Season. The country’s biggest 1/8 mile championship round begins tomorrow on Madeira Packet Road of the seaside town,with qualifying and will finish up on Sunday with eliminations. The event includes 12 categories of competition, supercharged outlaws, competition bike, super stock, sport compact, modified, super sedan, super street, junior dragster, modified bike, supergas and top sportsman. Australian National Drag Racing Association business development manager Jennifer Harrison travelled to Mount Gambier to promote the event just 116km away. “Masters kindly said for us to come along and put on a display here (Mount Gambier),” Harrison said. “Before national events we try and get to as many places with our semi trailer to promote drag racing. “So for Portland that is happen- PROMOTING THE SPORT: Australian National Drag Racing Association business development manager Jennifer Harrison travelled to Mount Gambier to promote the national championship drag racing even in Portland beginning tomorrow. ing this weekend at South Coast Raceway, we came up with a plan to go to both Mount Gambier and Warrnambool. The display was not just to promote the event but to educate residents on the professional sport of drag racing. Harrison said a number of passbys had been enthusiastic and positive about the national event. “Some people who approached Top class action at Portland this weekend and four racers, some competitors still own vehicles tipping $100,000. “These competitors are the grassroot racers, they are the ones with potential to move up into group one,” Ms Harrison said. In addition to the roaring entertainment of gutsy vehicles hitting top speeds, children can enjoy the likes of a jumping castle and other activities. Gates open at 9am both days, with qualifying beginning from 11am tomorrow and eliminations from 10am Sunday. Adults cost $20 for one day or $30 for a two day pass, while children under 14 and accompanied by an adult enter free. Harrison said her highlight of these events was simply getting awareness out to the community about the sport. Pictures: ASHLEY EARL us had been to a drag race before, but many years ago and were quite interested in coming along for a look,” she said. Although this series is known as the second tier of group two, three “Championships aside – when you think of motorsport and what happens out on the streets, if people are out on the roads and racing each other a lot of the time it got referred to as drag racing,” she said. “Whereas, drag racing is a championship event and a professional sport in a controlled environment. “We are really trying to educate people about that, and also let people know if they do have these high powered vehicles they can take them out and give it a go in a safe environment.” The series takes drag racers all over Australia, including Adelaide, Melbourne, Alice Springs and Willowbank in Queensland. Drag racing proves to be addictive ASHLEY EARL MOUNT Gambier drag racing enthusiast Mario Baker will be taking to the track this weekend in Round 1 of the Summit Racing and Sportsman Series competition in Portland. Baker will jump abroad his 2002 Suzuki GSXF 750cc Sports Tourer in the modified bike class. “Drag racing is something this bike was never designed to do, so it is running GSXR parts – which is the sports model,” Baker said. “Because of the model, they are designed to go from here to Adelaide quite comfortably, so it is not designed for drag racing. “It has a lot of modifications to get it where it is today and taken a lot of work to wake it up and get it to the line.” Baker said he had been preparing for the event by making sure everything was right on his bike. The large field of competitors will make for some tough competition, which means getting everything tight on the vehicle is crucial. ITS TIME TO DRAG: Mount Gambier’s Mario Baker abroad his 2002 Suzuki GSXF 750cc Sports Tourer and Gavin Dohnt on his 2007 Suzuki B-King 1340cc will go head-to-head in the opening round of the 2015 ANDRA Championship Season, Summit Racing and Sportsman Series drag race competition in Portland this weekend. 50 - The Border Watch, Friday, January 16, 2015 Baker said he got into drag racing through his friend Gavin Dohnt and had not looked back. “I was a little bit of a rev-head on the road and I thought lets get it off the road and go put it on the track in a safe environment,” he said. “I have won a couple of events, but all I am hoping for this weekend is some experience and just to see how things on the national stake work out – I am competing against guys who are a lot more seasoned veterans.” Meanwhile, Henty, Victoria’s Dohnt is also competing in the national competition. Dohnt will travel to Portland with his 2007 Suzuki B-King 1340cc ready to take up the challenge. Crowned national champion in 2013 Dohnt has expectations at the opening round. However, he is not feeling the pressure. “I just love racing, I’m looking forward to seeing the people we only really see at race meetings,” Dohnt said. “I have been preparing for the event for about three weeks now, we had a test day and we have done some work to the bike for this weekend. “I am hoping for a win this weekend, but you can never be sure, you just take whatever comes your way.” Dohnt became addicted to the adrenaline rushing sport of drag racing in 1991 when Casterton, Victoria held a street meet. “I went to Casterton and got hooked straight away, it is very addictive,” he said.
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