MATT SMITH MAKES HISTORY IN KINGAROY

by | Apr 18, 2022 | QLD, SSA Production Sedans | 0 comments

Official Release-Sunday 17th April 2022, Images by 44 Photography.

The “Mareeba Missile” Matt Smith has claimed a remarkable victory at the Kingaroy Speedway on Sunday Night to claim victory in the 2022 SSA National Production Sedan Title.

Driving his much loved black Chrysler Centura Smith hit the lead on lap thirty to claim victory over fellow Queenslanders Robert Trapp & Chris Pagel with Pagel coming from the B Main to finish on the podium.

Sunny weather along with a great trackside and online audience were apart of the a fantastic finale to the Easter weekend in the South Burnett region.

Much different track conditions greeted competitors for what promised to be an exciting conclusion to the 19th running of the SSA National Production Sedan Title.

The final night got under with the remaining nine qualifying heats as a dramatic heat twenty eight kicked things off.

Rory Evans who was seventh in the point standings after night one unfortunately got caught up in a bingle which began in front of him.

Evans right front suspension collapsed in the incident which eventually lead to the Holden Commodore finishing up on his roof.

Michael Johnson and Josh Boyd were able to restart after the initial accident as Robert Trapp continued to lead the field.

The former Queensland Street Stock Champion held off Dubbo’s Chris Blyton, Liam Heaton and Chris Pagel who worked way back into fourth by the end of the ten laps.

Matthew Layton locked in a front row starting position for the A Main as he found a way past Dakota Laverty, Jaiden Healey and Beau Smithwick on the final lap of heat twenty nine.

Speedway Sedan stalwart Adrian Stott got the elbows out in heat thirty as the experienced campaigner defeated Bryce Bayfield as Gary Harris Jnr went from ninth to third by race end.

Gladstone’s Richard Cook lead all the way in heat thirty one as the race went green to chequer without a stoppage.Simon Walker, Darran Lester and Josh Harm had a great battle for the minors in heat thirty one albeit over five seconds adrift of Richard Cook.

Queensland Champion Daniel Henshaw got his National Title back on track as he put thirty six points in the bank from the ever consistent Brad Scherer & 2011 National Super Sedan Champion Steve Jordan.

Former National Modified Sedan Champion Max Clarke won his third heat race of the weekend in heat thirty three as he got the better of Lachlan Seawright with Trevor Mills officially third.

After a disappointing end to night one Joel Berkley took the win in heat thirty four after Matt Smith challenged the driver of the Cush Clothing Ford Falcon in the concluding stages.

Lismore’s Stuart Fawcett hugged the pole line in heat thirty five for the ten laps to claim victory from Josh Jarius & Aaron Sander in his Ford Falcon.

Just the eight cars contested the final heat race of the National Title as Levi O’Brien won by over six seconds from Maryborough’s Kent Shelford.

The local officials at the Kingaroy Speedway went about preparing a fresh racetrack for the finals in front of a great online audience on the Speedway Sedan Live coverage powered by Pro1 Race Parts.

Eleven cars contested the first of two C Mains as Nathan Barbeler, Thomas Fuller & Kane Heidke enjoyed a fierce battle for the two transfer positions.

Barbeler would win by nearly two seconds as Thomas Fuller had the crowd cheering as held on to the final transfer position after rolling heavily on night one.

A fairly uneventful C Main two saw Kory Jennings capitalise on Damien McAlister running wide on lap seven to advance forward into the second of the B Mains.

McAlister collected the second final transfer position before spinning after the finish line leaving James Elliott & Norm Townsend with nowhere to go, with McAllister’s cars heavily damaged in the incident.

A frenetic opening B Main saw Chris Pagel, Brendan Cowley & Jack Kay advance into the forty lap decider after Kay held off Rockhampton’s Michael Johnson & Hayden Stewart.

The second B Main was a race that certainly showed what SSA Production Sedan racing is all about as the combats put on an outstanding show.

Travis Hutchison in the new Ford Mustang had Dakota Laverty & Daniel Henshaw trying every move in the book to try and steal the final transfer position.

The Holden Commodores of Brett Barron and former Victorian Champion Chris Blyton cleared out from the rest of the field as Hutchison narrowly held onto the final berth in the main event.

Twenty two competitors were introduced to the appreciative crowd as they took on forty laps of the Kingaroy showgrounds.

Matthew Layton and Max Clarke both hailing out of Northern New South Wales shared the front row bringing the field to the green flag.

Clarke would take the early lead as the SSA Production Sedans raced two and three wide in a great exhibition of Speedway Sedan racing.

Before long National Champion Joel Berkley took over the race lead as Clarke fell back through the field eventually heading infield on lap seven.

Local hope Josh Harm was also out on lap ten as Berkley held command from Brad Scherer and Matthew Layton.

Scherer started to loom on the back of the leader as Brendan Cowley brought the yellow lights on with twelve laps completed.

It would be a high speed freight train at the front of the field after the restart before Matthew Layton found the concrete wall on lap nineteen while sitting in third place.

Layton’s race was over with heavy damage to his Ford Falcon as Berkley lead the field away again.

Scherer continued his pursuit of the leader with Matt Smith now finding himself in third place in the Chrysler Centura.

The right front wheel of the Ford Falcon of Aaron Sander collapsed while he was in fifth place causing a stoppage just as Smith moved into second place.

Remarkably Scherer would also find the concrete wall in the same part of the racetrack as Layton straight after the restart with the great run of the Bundaberg based driver coming to an end.

Smith took the race lead from Berkley after the stoppage with the National Champion struggling with a ill handling race car in the concluding stages.

As the laps wound down Smith looked a winner before Robert Trapp came from the clouds to challenge the Centura in the final circulations.

Trapp had one last lunge at Smith in the final corner which would prove unsuccessful as Matt Smith crossed the line first to become the first competitor to win a National Production Sedan Title after previously being a National Modified Sedan Champion.

It would be a all Queensland top five as Trapp finished second from Chris Pagel who came from the B Main to be third from Berkley and Richard Cook.

Matt Smith was a relieved man in victory lane as he thanked his brother Tim for the incredible amount of work that has gone into the car over the last few days to make it even possible to contest the National Title.

The 2023 SSA National Production Sedan Title will be held at the Allwest Plant Hire Ellenbrook Speedway in Western Australia with a date to be confirmed shortly.

Official Result of the 2022 SSA National Production Sedan Title

A Main, 40 Laps- 1. QB36 Matt Smith, 2. Q19 Robert Trapp, 3. Q2 Chris Pagel, 4. A1 Joel Berkley, 5. Q15 Richard Cook, 6. N91 Chris Blyton, 7. V30 Stephen Laidlaw, 8. QA71 Travis Hutchison, 9. Q61 Brendan Cowley, DNF Q59 Darran Lester (34), Q30 Brad Scherer (31), Q16 Aaron Sander (31), Q99 Jack Kay (31), Q26 Gary Harris Jnr (31), QB18 Brett Barron (29), Q23 Adrian Stott (24), N65 Stuart Fawcett (24), N81 Matthew Layton (19), Q63 Rory Evans (12), Q14 Josh Harm (10), Q88 David Barbeler (10), N15 Max Clarke (7).

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