From speedcafe.com / Brett Murray
Queensland youngster Brock Hallett has pulled off a last-turn pass to win the South West Conveyancing 50th Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic at the Premier Speedway in Warrnambool, Victoria at 2am this morning.
The Portland-based Queenslander had to pass World of Outlaws regular Sheldon Haudenschild just metres from the final line to snatch the victory while defending Classic Champion Lachlan McHugh was third.
The win gave Hallett a $50,000 payday.
Earlier in the night Hodges Motorsport’s James McFadden took the A main which had been postponed from the previous night and picked up $10,000.
McFadden would start third in the classic final and led the early stages of the feature before clipping a wall and damaging his suspension.
Despite his damaged car he went on to finish fifth.
From autoaction.com.au / Thomas Miles
The 50th Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic went down to the last corner with Brock Hallett securing a win for the ages on Monday morning.
Hallett’s hopes of victory appeared distant as he entered the final lap in second place behind World of Outlaws driver Sheldon Haudenschild.
However, the 27-year-old Queenslander, who currently lives in Portland launched, a daring move at the final turn and made it stick metres before the chequered flag to snatch the biggest race in the land in the early hours of Monday morning.
After the unforgettable finish, Haudenschild had to settle for second, crossing the line just 0.122s behind, while last year’s winner Lachie McHugh rounded out the podium.
Jock Goodyer and James McFadden were the other drivers to finish in the top five which was covered by just two and a half seconds after 30 minutes and 40 laps of hard racing.
The nail-biting climax was worth the wait as racing went deep into the night after inclement weather postponed Saturday’s Night 2 program into Sunday.
Tate Frost held off McHugh to take out Night 1 A-Main honours from McHugh. McFadden showed ominous signs in his Hodges Motorsport #D5 machine by winning the second feature race on Sunday afternoon, backing up his kings Challenge win in Mount Gambier.
The 50th Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic feature had a slow start with many cars failing to complete the opening laps.
Both Randy Morgan and Luke Oldfield retired without completing a lap, while Chase Randall and Supercars star Cameron Waters were both out of action before Lap 5.
McFadden started the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic finale from third, but was on fire in the early stages and took the lead ahead of Haudenschild and Hallett.
The race was interrupted again on Lap 7 when Cole Macedo tagged the wall and suffered a scary shunt at Turn 3.
Macedo barrel-rolled four times before his badly bruised car came to rest, but fortunately he walked away unharmed.
Eventually the die-hard fans who stayed in the stands past midnight were rewarded with extended spells of green-flag running.
As the likes of Corey McCullagh and Steve Lines dropped out, a tense battle for the lead formed.
McFadden had maintained his early lead, but his hopes of victory took a massive hit when he damaged his suspension after a brush with the wall.
Despite nursing a damaged car, the Aussie World of Outlaws driver still finished fifth.
With McFadden dropping down the order, it promoted Haudenschild into the lead with Hallett breathing down his neck.
The Stenhouse jr/Marshall Racing World of Outlaws driver had victory in his fingertips, but a small mistake on the exit of Turn 2 left him vulnerable coming into the final left-hander on the last lap.
It proved to be the perfect invitation for Hallett, who took the high line and swooped around the outside to steal the win at the final corner.
In addition to adding his name into Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic history, Hallett pocketed $50,000 for the win.
The victory is the crowning moment of a personal best season for Hallett, who has been at the pointy end of the field more than ever having recorded top 10 finishes in seven of his last eight A Mains.
He had also shown strong pace across the weekend at Warrnambool and was a deserving winner in a 50th anniversary Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic that will live long in the memory.
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See the full story from autoaction.com.au / Thomas Miles:
Photo's: Mad Matt / speedcafe.com / Premier Speedway / Brock Hallett
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