Sparks flew on Wednesday night with the return of Joe Costa displaying his special brand of stunt riding.  Our plucky scribe Trev captured all the action in-between gasps from his Craven A Special Filters…

Track Report 5 September 2018

by Trevor Scallopini

It was a cracking night’s entertainment at Smith Park last week with strong fields and daring performances setting the scene for some scintillating finishes.

Rod Larcombe finally got the Wheelrace win he was looking for with a gutsy closing lap over the 1200 meter distance.  With Greg Reynolds second and Tom Cook third we are seeing a familiar pattern emerging in these races through the middle markers proving to be the biggest obstacle to Brandon Hutton’s charge from scratch. We haven’t seen the front men figure for some weeks now and one wonders if a shake-up is needed in the handicapping, or perhaps the limit riders need to get organised?  

In the Keirins, spectators got more than they bargained for with some acrobatic manoeuvres from Joe Costa. Unfortunately Joe’s foot security was on a par with Ben Hunt’s NRL ball handling and the result was akin to a Mareeba Rodeo bull ride spectacular. Remarkably Joe managed to keep it upright but not before straddling the Avanti and grounding both shoes, leaving Jonesy to call the biggest fireworks event since the Cairns Show.  

Ultimately, crisis was averted and the comeback kid Cooper Hume took the win from dad Peter with Alan Henwood third.

The ‘Joe Show’ remains an enigma. If he can tame the fixed wheel he could rapidly move through the grades.  

I’m told Greg Reynolds moved into the big gear league and subsequently recorded an impressive win over Josh Rayner in division two. Reynolds showed he has that touch of class with a clear win over the in-form Rayner, but don’t write the wombat off yet!

Likewise in Division 3 we viewed a power cycling victory from Michael Reed, and the thought of him going head to head with Reynolds, Rayner and co. for future events is tantalising to say the least.

Rod Armstrong’s second place was another reminder that this occasional track rider has genuine speed (of his Uncle Gaz?)  and we look forward to seeing more of him.   

A highlight for me was the junior’s team sprints. Under the careful guidance of Al Hodge 4 rider teams were put through their paces in this World and Olympic event. Some excellent changes and good speed and teamwork brought the final result right down to the wire with Rene’s Racers just ahead of Jackson’s Jets. Nice work from Rawson, Verety, Elijah, Sophie and Lily, not forgetting Tom and Luca in the freewheelers.

The Big Al All-In Eliminator to finish the night provided some challenging moments for the race recorders. However the cool heads of Jasmine and Graham got it right on the night and we witnessed a miss and out with plenty of action and intensity. Brandon took the win narrowly from Luke while Batesy defied a big blowout in the odds to claim third money – could be one for the Stewards attention.    

See you next Wednesday.