Current Western Australian Modified Sedan champion Matt Noakes has taken out the inaugural South Coast Classic at Attwell Park Speedway in Albany Western Australia.
In a thrilling finish, Noakes defeated five time GWN7 WA Modified Sedan Series champion Aydan Trewern by only 0.015 of a second in what was a pulsating night of action.
Near perfect weather conditions greeted the drivers, with a large crowd on hand for one of highest paying Speedway Sedan events in Australia.
Nathan Penn was the highest point scorer after six qualifying heats for the South Coast Classic with the only major incident of the night occurring in heat three when Neville Mansted and Calon Ball came together. Mansted would spin across the front of the field after the contact with Adam Houston and Anthony King both sustaining damage to their Ford Falcons.
The Clark Tyres Shootout saw some great racing throughout the event, with Nathan Penn and Matt Noakes having a great battle for pole position. Penn narrowly defeated Noakes which delighted the large local Albany crowd.
Laurie Dowsett, David Gordon, Adam Houston and Clint Noakes all failed to start the twenty five lap main event, with Noakes Ford Falcon having engine gremlins throughout the evening.
Eleven cars faced the starter in the inaugural South Coast Classic feature race with Nathan Penn jumping to the lead with Matt Noakes, Trewern and Blake Watson all battling for position early in the event.
Penn made it extremely tough for his rivals to pass with Trewern finding a way past Noakes for second place before ranging up alongside the leader on multiple occasions.
The top four pulled away from the rest of the field with Blake Jackson, Calon Ball and Anthony King having a great scrap for fourth place further back.
With ten laps remaining Noakes found a way past Trewern with Watson starting to fall away from the top three.
On lap eighteen, drama struck the leader as he exited turn four his Ford Falcon begun to slow with Penn eventually retiring from the race on lap twenty.
With Penn’s demise Noakes assumed the race lead with Trewern trying everything to find a way past.
Trewern had one last go at passing Noakes on the final lap with the Holden Commodore of Trewern poking the nose in front as they raced down the back straight for the last time.
Noakes and Trewern would drag race out of turn four to the chequered flag with the state champion winning by just 0.015 of a second, with the crowd on their feet in the concluding stages.
Blake Watson drove a smart race to finish third from Blake Jackson, Calon Ball, Anthony King and Neville Mansted who charged up to seventh place after starting from the rear of the field.
The twenty five lap main event went green to chequer without a stoppage, with the race a fitting end to a fantastic night of Modified Sedan racing.
The inaugural South Coast Classic winner Matt Noakes was delighted with his victory which earnt him $5000. “Great to win tonight, to have a race like that with Aydan was something special. A huge thanks to my crew for all their work the last few weeks and well done to the Albany Speedway Club for putting on such a big show”.
All competitors who raced in the South Coast Classic went home with prizemoney for their efforts with the Albany Speedway club putting together a fantastic event for Modified Sedans. Plans are already underway for the 2018 running of the event.
The GWN7 WA Modified Sedan Series will now have a short break before resuming at Makit Hardware Narrogin Speedway on Saturday 11th February 2017 for the annual Holden vs Ford Stampede.
Official Results of the 2017 South Coast Classic
Heat 1 - 10 Laps: 1. W57 Nathan Penn, 2. W75 Blake Watson, 3. W23 Clint Noakes, 4. W51 Anthony King, 5. W8 Calon Ball, 6. W4 Miranda Ball, DNF: W15 Neville Mansted (3)
Heat 2- 10 Laps: 1. W12 Aydan Trewern, 2. W18 Adam Houston, 3. W77 Steve Beres, 4. W41 Blake Jackson, 5. W60 Richard Nelson, 6. W88 David Gordon (8), DNF W14 Laurie Dowsett (4), DNS W1 Matt Noakes
Heat 3 - 10 Laps: 1. W41 Blake Jackson, 2. W60 Richard Nelson, 3. W23 Clint Noakes, 4. W88 David Gordon, DNF: W8 Calon Ball (3), W15 Neville Mansted (1), W51 Anthony King (1), W18 Adam Houston (1)
Heat 4 - 10 Laps: 1. W1 Matt Noakes, 2. W77 Steve Beres, 3. W12 Aydan Trewern, 4. W57 Nathan Penn, 5. W75 Blake Watson, 6, W4 Miranda Ball, DNS: W14 Laurie Dowsett
Heat 5 -10 Laps: 1. W57 Nathan Penn, 2. W12 Aydan Trewern, 3. W8 Calon Ball, 4. W51 Anthony King, 5. W4 Miranda Ball, DNS: W60 Richard Nelson, W15 Neville Mansted, W88 David Gordon
Heat 6 - 10 Laps: 1. W1 Matt Noakes, 2. W75 Blake Watson, 3. W41 Blake Jackson, 4. W77 Steve Beres, 5. W18 Adam Houston, DNS W23 Clint Noakes, W14 Laurie Dowsett
Feature Race - 25 Laps: 1. W1 Matt Noakes, 2. W12 Aydan Trewern, 3. W75 Blake Watson, 4. W41 Blake Jackson, 5. W8 Calon Ball, 6. W51 Anthony King, 7. W15 Neville Mansted, 8. W60 Richard Nelson, 9. W4 Miranda Ball, DNF: W57 Nathan Penn (20), W77 Steve Beres (18) DNS: W18 Adam Houston, W23 Clint Noakes, W88 David Gordon, W14 Laurie Dowsett. Time 7:38.826. Winning Margin 0.015, Fastest Lap: 17.798 W12 Aydan Trewern
The 2016/2017 GWN7 WA Modified Sedan Series is proudly supported by
Bill Gibbs Excavations
Southern Stump & Mulching Services
Blight’s Auto Electrics
Glenbrae Hay Trans
Stirling Print & Design Albany
Speedway Sedan Digest
* Details courtesy of Allan Smallwood Jnr