ABOVE: South Grafton's Daniel Bailey sprays the crowd during the 24th annual Jacaranda Dirt Drags.
ABOVE: South Grafton's Daniel Bailey sprays the crowd during the 24th annual Jacaranda Dirt Drags. Matthew Elkerton

Mud flies as dragsters turn up the torque in wet

MOTORSPORT: Mud flew and smiles beamed wide as dragsters defied the weather at the 24th annual McLennan Earthmoving Jacaranda Dirt Drags.

While the deluge the Clarence Valley copped over as enough to affect crowd numbers on Sunday, it was not enough to stop some willing racers from hitting the track.

While there were no records broken, times did begin to quicken during the afternoon as the track began to dry out, the late fast times a new thing for South Grafton Ex-Services Motorcycle Club secretary Narelle Rankin.

"It is unusual that our fastest times of the day came at the end of the day in all the finals,” she said. "Usually that is when the competitors are tiring.

"After the early rain on the Sunday morning, the track began to dry out and you could see it was just getting faster and faster.”

Despite the heavy rains, the Gnudwoc Park Raceway strip held up quite well over the day's competition which was a testament to the amount of work put into it by the committee in the week before the event.

"It was a shame because we really thought it was going to be the best track we had ever had after all the work that went into it,” Rankin said. "A few weeks ago we were worried it wasn't going to hold up because it was a dust bowl.

"But we put in a lot of work rolling and watering the track through the week. To be honest it probably wouldn't have held as well as it did without that work.

"It is just a shame we didn't get to see the record times we were hoping for.”

It was a groundbreaking event for Motorcycling NSW with the first ever junior quad racing in the state taking part in the drags.

Most of the junior quads contingent was made up of girls, a good sign for the future of the sport.

"It was great, one of them had on her shirt, "We don't chase boys, we pass them”.”

Wingham's Ken Bisley secured the 2017 Sullo Shield after taking out the unlimited class and also finished with the fastest lap time in the class at 8.45 seconds.



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