New class provides fresh challenge for Ipswich speedway racer
IPSWICH speedway driver Dallas Sharp will have burning eyes when he takes to Archerfield Raceway tonight.
With no clutch, and running on pure methanol, he will be lining up for round two of the Polar Ice Track Championship, which headlines tonight's meet with the Dirt Modifieds opening round.
After a stint in the Mod- lites category, Sharp only recently made the step up to the faster class of racers.
Joined in the pits by good friend and racing partner Brendan Palmer, the "rookie'' hopes to improve on a 12th placed finish in his first race last month.
"It wasn't too bad for my first race and in the second heat I came ninth out of 31 entries,” Sharp said.
"In the first two shows I started at the back, but if I get the all clear I will start in the middle and reverse for the second heat
"It has always been my dream to race Midgets and I wouldn't be able to do it without my pit crew and my sponsors Llewellyn Motors. It is a bit more expensive but Llewellyn has helped out a lot with the funding and running side of things.
"Compared to the Modlites these ones have a lot more horsepower so everything happens a lot quicker and the race is a bit more open.”
Having supported the Ipswich racer during his time in the Modlites category, Llewellyn stuck with Sharp when he changed classes and race number from 27 to 40.
Palmer displays the number 41, and the rivalry between the two racers has continued onto the Archerfield Raceway track.
One of the top contenders in this weekend's Polar Ice Midget series second round, Palmer finished with a third place in Toowoomba last weekend. Despite his strong standing in the sport, Sharp still maintains he has the upper hand after engine trouble ruled his racing partner out of their first appearance together.
"We do help each other out a lot because I am the rookie,” he said.
"He can read the car a lot better than I can because of his experience but in the workshop there is still a rivalry there.
"Because he didn't make the field last time I can say I am still undefeated from him in the Midgets.”
Tonight's race will see current leader Darren Vine take on the New Zealand contingent of Chris Gwilliam and Leon Burgess. With former Queensland champ Mitchell Whittaker and Palmer also looking to crack the winners podium, the second round of the series is set for some top racing.
Gates open at Archerfield Raceway tonight from 4pm, with racing at 4.45pm.
The main program featuring Dirt Modifieds and Polar Ice Midgets gets underway from 6pm.