Australian Sprintcar Championship

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The Australian Sprintcar Championship is a dirt track racing championship held each year to determine the Australian national champion. The single championship meeting runs in either late January or early February and has been held each year since the Windsor RSL Speedway in Sydney hosted the first championship in 1963. After the first nine championship meetings were held in New South Wales, the Sprintcar Control Council of Australia (SCCA) now holds the meeting in a different state on a rotational basis, with 1972 seeing the first championship held outside of NSW at the Premier Speedway in Warrnambool, Victoria. The Australian Sprintcar Title is only open to Australian drivers and is run and sanctioned by the SCCA.

History[edit]

The championship has gone by different names over its 52 years as in that time Sprintcars have evolved from crude modified 'hot rods' to the dual winged, 410 cubic inch engined cars of today. The majority of race cars and engines are imported from the USA, although some local chassis builders still exist. Sprintcars themselves are modular, with many combinations of chassis and engine possible. Equipment is highly specialised. Wheels, suspension, wings, drive train and fuel tank all bolt to a chassis.

From 1963-64 the title was known as the Australian Sportsman Hot rod Championship. In 1965 this changed to the Australian Hot Rod Championship. This was again changed in 1966 to the National Super Modified Championship but the 1965 name re-appeared in 1967. From 1968-1970 the meeting was known as the Australian Super Modified Championship while from 1971-1978 the title was then called the Australian Modified Sprintcar Championship before changing one more time in 1979 to its current name, the Australian Sprintcar Championship.

The Australian championship, along with the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic held exclusively at Premier Speedway, are seen the two most prestigious single Sprintcar meetings on the Australian speedway calendar. Another prestigious race is the Australian Sprintcar Grand Prix held annually at the Sydney Speedway.

The championship is separate to Australia's national Sprintcar series, the World Series Sprintcars which has been running since 1987.

Retired Sydney based driver Garry Rush holds the record with ten Australian championship wins and 18 podium finishes between 1966 and 1998. New South Wales based drivers have dominated the title with 36 wins from 52 championships. Six drivers were from Victoria, three each from South Australia and Western Australia, two winners have been from Queensland, and one from Tasmania.

While many successful Australian Sprintcar drivers started out racing Speedcars, only three drivers have ever won both the Australian Sprintcar Championship and the Australian Speedcar Championship. They being Sydney drivers George Tatnell and Robert Farr, and Adelaide's Phil March. Victorian driver Max Dumesny, who won the championship in 1991, 1998 and 2002, was also the Australian Formula 500 Champion in 1981 and 1983, and is the only driver to achieve the Formula 500-Sprintcar double. Dumesny is also the son-in-law of former racer Sid Moore, having married Moore's daughter, Melinda, herself a former Sprintcar driver, in 1992.

On 25–28 January 2012 Speedway City in Adelaide hosted the 50th Anniversary Australian Sprintcar Championship.[1] Sydney driver Brooke Tatnell won his 5th Australian championship and repeated the feat of his late father George Tatnell who won his only Australian Sprintcar Title at the track in 1988 (the 1988 meeting was also the younger Tatnell's first appearance in the championship at just 16 years of age). George and Brooke Tatnell are one of only two father-son combinations to win the championship, the other being Sydney's Steve and Garry Brazier

The 2014 Australian Champion was former Tasmanian driver David Murcott who won his first national championship after finishing third in 2012 and second in 2013. The 2014 championship was held at the Latrobe Speedway in Latrobe, Tasmania. Murcott, who is based in Victoria, became the first Tasmanian driver to win the Australian Sprintcar Championship.

The 2014-15 Australian Sprintcar Championship was held at the Bunbury Speedway in Western Australia on 12–14 February 2015, and it saw Murcott go on to claim back-to-back wins. On this occasion, he comfrtably defeated Steven Lines (SA) and Jamie Veal (Vic).

Winners since 1963[edit]

Year Venue City/State Winner Runner-up 3rd place
1963 Windsor RSL Speedway Sydney, NSW Bill Willis (Vic) Ray Forrest (NSW) Graham McCubbin (Vic)
1964 Windsor RSL Speedway Sydney, NSW Dick Briton (NSW) Bill Willis (Vic) George Polley (NSW)
1965 Windsor RSL Speedway Sydney, NSW Bill Warner (NSW) Dick Briton (NSW) Graeme McCubbin (Vic)
1966 Westmead Speedway Sydney, NSW Dick Briton (NSW) Bill Warner (NSW) Garry Rush (NSW)
1967 Westmead Speedway Sydney, NSW Dick Briton (NSW) Garry Rush (NSW) Ray Brett (NSW)
1968 Sydney Showground Speedway Sydney, NSW Bob Tunks (NSW) Ray Brett (NSW) Tony Ward (NSW)
1969 Morisset Speedway Morisset, NSW Jim Winterbottom (NSW) Ray Skipper (SA) Peter Dickerson (NSW)
1970 Morisset Speedway Morisset, NSW Bill Wigzell (SA) David Lander (NSW) Les Harrower (Vic)
1971 Sydney Showground Speedway Sydney, NSW Dick Briton (NSW) Joe Scruise (NSW) Les Harrower (Vic)
1972 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Graeme McCubbin (Vic) Phil Hereen (SA) Wayne Fisher (SA)
1973 Rowley Park Speedway Adelaide, SA John Moyle (SA) Allan Jones (SA) Ron Clark (Vic)
1974 Fraser Park Speedway Canberra, ACT Jim Winterbottom (NSW) Les Harrower (Vic) Ron Smith (Vic)
1975 Archerfield Speedway Brisbane, Qld Dick Briton (NSW) Graeme McCubbin (Vic) Garry Rush (NSW)
1976 Latrobe Speedway Latrobe, Tas Noel Bradford (WA) Graeme McCubbin (Vic) David Conlin (Vic)
1977 Bunbury Speedway Bunbury, WA Garry Rush (NSW) Noel Bradford (WA) George Tatnell (NSW)
1978 Parramatta City Raceway Sydney, NSW Garry Rush (NSW) Jimmy Sills (United States) Steve Brazier (NSW)
1979 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Steve Brazier (NSW) Bill Wigzell (SA) Tim Moncrieff (Tas)
1980 Speedway Park Virginia, SA Steve Brazier (NSW) Alf Barbagallo (WA) Graeme McCubbin (Vic)
1981 Brisbane Exhibition Ground Brisbane, Qld Garry Rush (NSW) Bill Barrows (SA) Dick Briton (NSW)
1982 Tralee Speedway Canberra, ACT Garry Rush (NSW) Bob Kelly (QLD) Ian Sams (NSW)
1983 Newcastle Motordrome Newcastle, NSW Garry Rush (NSW) Brett Lacey (Vic) Ray Lacey (Vic)
1984 Rockhampton Speedway Rockhampton, Qld Garry Rush (NSW) George Tatnell (NSW) John Walsh (NSW)
1985 Claremont Speedway Perth, WA Ron Krikke (WA) Lee Foster (WA) Max Dumesny (Vic)
1986 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Garry Rush (NSW) Bob Tunks (NSW) Ian Lewis (Vic)
1987* Northline Speedway Darwin, NT Brett Lacey (Vic) Steve Brazier (NSW) Garry Rush (NSW)
1988 Speedway Park Virginia, SA George Tatnell (NSW) Garry Rush (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic)
1989 Tralee Speedway Canberra, ACT Garry Rush (NSW) George Tatnell (NSW) Brett Lacey (Vic)
1990 Archerfield Speedway Brisbane, Qld Garry Rush (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) George Tatnell (NSW)
1991 Carrick Speedway Carrick, Tas Max Dumesny (Vic) David Anderson (Vic) Brooke Tatnell (NSW)
1992 Parramatta City Raceway Sydney, NSW Garry Rush (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) Rod Bowen (NSW)
1993 Claremont Speedway Perth, WA Ron Krikke (WA) Garry Brazier (NSW) Mark Wells (WA)
1994 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Garry Brazier (NSW) Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Robert Farr (NSW)
1995 Borderline Speedway Mount Gambier, SA Garry Brazier (NSW) Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Garry Rush (NSW)
1996 Archerfield Speedway Brisbane, Qld Todd Wanless (Qld) Paul Lindberg (Qld) Garry Rush (NSW)
1997 Parramatta City Raceway Sydney, NSW Garry Brazier (NSW) Kerry Madsen (NSW) Peter Murphy (NSW)
1998 Bunbury Speedway Bunbury, WA Max Dumesny (Vic) Garry Rush (NSW) Skip Jackson (NSW)
1999 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Phil March (SA) Kerry Madsen (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic)
2000 Speedway Park Virginia, SA Garry Brazier (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) Nathan MacDonald (Qld)
2001 Brisbane International Raceway Brisbane, Qld Skip Jackson (NSW) Garry Brazier (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic)
2002 Parramatta City Raceway Sydney, NSW Max Dumesny (Vic) Robert Farr (NSW) Brooke Tatnell (NSW)
2003 Premier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Kerry Madsen (NSW) Garry Brazier (NSW) Brooke Tatnell (NSW)
2004 Bunbury Speedway Bunbury, WA Robert Farr (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) Mark Wells (WA)
2005 Riverview Speedway Murray Bridge, SA Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Ryan Farrell (WA) Cameron Gessner (Qld)
2006 Brisbane International Raceway Brisbane, Qld Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) Cameron Gessner (Qld)
2007 Latrobe Speedway Latrobe, Tas Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Max Dumesny (Vic) Robert Farr (NSW)
2008 Parramatta City Raceway Sydney, NSW Garry Brazier (NSW) Robert Farr (NSW) Ian Loudoun (NSW)
2009 Perth Motorplex Perth, WA Garry Brazier (NSW) Trevor Green (SA) Ryan Farrell (WA)
2010 Northline Speedway Darwin, NT James McFadden (NT) Stephen Bell (Vic) Jamie Maiolo (WA)
2011 Permier Speedway Warrnambool, Vic Brooke Tatnell (NSW) Kerry Madsen (NSW) Steven Lines (SA)
2012 Speedway City Virginia, SA Brooke Tatnell (NSW)[2] Shaun Dobson (Tas) David Murcott (Tas)
2013 Brisbane International Raceway Brisbane, Qld James McFadden (Qld) David Murcott (Tas) Steven Lines (SA)
2014 Latrobe Speedway Latrobe, Tas David Murcott (Tas) Robert Farr (NSW) Trevor Green (SA)
2015 Bunbury Speedway Bunbury, WA David Murcott (Vic) Steven Lines (SA) Jamie Veal (Vic)

 • Due to the 1987 championship being run at the Northline Speedway in Darwin, the championship was actually run early in the 1986/87 season to avoid the October–April wet season, rather than in its traditional late January time. Thus there was no actual championship run in the 1987 calendar year. Brett Lacey's win was controversial as it was claimed that he had spun out of the race and onto the infield 2 laps before a mid-race yellow flag. This was somehow missed by the officials who allowed him to re-start in 1st place when he should have been a lap down at the rear of the field. Second placed Steve Brazier protested the result, but his protest was dismissed as the officials had not seen Lacey's car stopped on the infield.

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