Jaca dirt drags back for 13th time

NEXT Sunday will see the 13th annual running of the very popular Jacaranda Dirt Drags hosted by the South Grafton Ex-Services Motorcycle Club.

The Drags this year promises to be one of the fastest ever, with the strip prepared to achieve fairest and fastest times to date.

The last two years times where down on average due to the very wet drag strip, however after considerable grading, widening, watering and rolling chances are that some record times will be run this year.

The fastest time to date is a sizzling 8.2 seconds for the quarter mile strip set two years ago by present Queensland Speedway Captain Scott Fischer on a 500cc speedway machine.

Over the 13 years the club has run the event, it has constantly improved in regards to the competition, spectator attendance and facilities.

This year the club will again be implementing their new electronic starting and timing system that gives the riders and spectators the most professional system on offer. The club has had the system built locally and at a cost of over $3000. It is looked upon as a substantial asset for the club.

As with previous years, spectators will witness a professionally run dirt drag meeting, sanctioned by Motorcycling Australia and run by fully qualified officials.

The format is: bikes of similar capacity will race each other in randomly selected pairs over a 1/8 Mile (220 metres) over three rounds, then they will be seeded into a knock-out competition.

This will produce a winner and runner-up in each class as well as the 'Fastest Time' winner.

The Drags will cater for all types of bikes, ages and even quads.

There will be an under 7 years (Pee Wee) display as well as other juniors contesting on 50cc, 65cc, 85cc, 125cc and 250cc 4 stroke machines. Seniors will contest 125cc, 250cc, and 500cc, Unlimited, Classic, Vintage, Street, Bucket, Female and Open Four Stroke as well as the BEARS (British, European and American Racing).

The winner of the Open will take home the 'Sullo Shield', a perpetual trophy named in memory of Anthony Sullivan an ardent local motorcycle enthusiast.

Previous years has seen the trophy go out of town, to such centres as Coffs Harbour in the clutches of John Hograth riding a 625 KTM, 2002 it went to Port Macquarie courtesy of Josh Rowe riding a 500cc Alcohol burning Honda and in two previous years it has been won by Scott Fischer on a 500cc Speedway bike from Queensland, but this year a strong local contingent have other ideas.

The Classic Cup (for bikes built before 1975) is also up for grabs and always proves popular with the crowd.

Last year Brian Wright the popular local legend etched his name on the Cup after taking the event out for a record 10 times.

Brian will be back trying as hard as ever this year, whether on his immaculately prepared Norton Commando or his 500cc Jawa Long-track bike, whatever the choice there is always surprises install.

Spectators are very well catered for, not only with great amenities such as full kiosk facilities go but also of the great view of the strip from start to finish and also of the audio/visual feast of the vast array of competing machines.

The latest model Hondas and Yamahas; KTMs have entered as have several machines fitted with 500cc Speedway engines.

Road bikes are also well represented with makes such as Norton, Triumph, Moto Guzzi, Harley Davidson, and Ducati as well as the ever-popular Japanese machines.

If you have a bike in the shed and would like to be part of the fun, drag it out with some safety gear and be out at the track for practice on Saturday October 14 between 10am to 2pm (free also to spectators and helpers), or just turn up next Sunday between 7.30am-9am for entry, practice between 9am and 10am, and be ready to blast off for the dragging of your life at 10am. Licences can be purchased on the day, so challenge a mate, and see who gets left at the gate.

It is a very popular day with many of the spectators who keep coming back and enjoying the relaxed atmosphere and exciting action.

Entrance is only $8 for adults, $5 for children over 12 and free to those under 12, in addition a family pass can be purchased for just $20.

The 13th Annual Jacaranda Dirt Drags promises to be the best yet, so bring the whole family for an exciting day.

Just follow the signs to Gnudwoc Park Raceway just off the highway south of Grafton on Old Lilypool Road.

For entry inquiries phone the president, Alan Paterson, on 0412068329, or race secretary Narelle Rankin 66425977.

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