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  • Kerry Madsen won both nights of the 2017/2018 Scott Darley Challenge at Sydney’s Valvoline Raceway, dominating every time he went out on the clay and in the process picking up a tasty $29,250 for his trouble.

    The Australian Sprintcar Champion was challenged by 2016 Knoxville Nationals champion Jason Johnson late in the 38-lap Saturday night A-Main but was able to hold sway and “meet Maxy” on the podium for the win.

    “Maxy” is nine-year old Max Freeman – the eldest nephew of Scott Darley – who hands out the hardware to the winner in the race that honours his late Uncle each year.

    The Keneric Racing #A1 was often in his own post code throughout the weekend held in blisteringly hot conditions and in front of excellent crowds on both the preliminary and main night of competition.

    Given the choice to take “the Scott Darley D19 challenge” (and thereby relinquish pole for a tenth row start with a possible $19k bonus) Madsen shrewdly turned down the offer and began from his rightful starting spot alongside Schuchart on the front row.

    Upon reflection after the race Kerry confirmed that he’d done the right thing.

    “Looking back on it I just don’t think we could have made our way through from back there tonight. We’ve tried it before and even though it hasn’t worked for us I still do love coming from the rear at this place. Honestly though I think we did the right thing staying on pole.”

    Madsen scored $10k for the Preliminary main event win, $250 for the KRGS “Door to Pole” Dash event and a further $19k for the Saturday A-Main.

    The revamped format kept teams and fans guessing and often threw major curve balls at victory contenders.

    Some of the racing on the Saturday night in particular when last gasp spots were on the line for the A-Main transfer was sublime.

    Madsen sped across the line to head some fierce battles behind him between Johnson in second, Robbie Farr in third, Sam Walsh in fourth and Pennsylvanian Logan Schuchart rounding out the top five.

    Schuchart had hurt his motor the night before and car owner John Weatherall was forced to lease a replacement for the Saturday night’s proceedings – a move that Schuchart rewarded by putting the Motorguard Triple X on the front row.

    Jason Johnson, Robbie Farr, Sam Walsh and Schuchart in particular, together with James McFadden at one point, were engaged in a dogfight that would have made Schuchart’s great grandfather Joe Allen (who flew P40’s in World War 2) proud.

    McFadden really got the #17 rocking until he slipped over the cushion in turn four whilst attempting a critical outside pass on Schuchart and looped in front of the hapless Carson Macedo and Matt Dumesny.

    Macedo flipped hard and McFadden was quick to both accept responsibility and apologise publicly to both the Californian and Dumesny.

    The other high profile exit from the race happened inside the first few laps when Jamie Veal flipped the TEH / Pumpa KMS entry after contact with Californian Domenic Scelzi going into turn one.

    Scelzi was forced to check up when Shaun Dobson came back from over the lip of the track on the main straight which crowded the ‘three into one’ situation and Veal was the unfortunate victim.

    The Scott Darley Challenge saw 60 total entries with the 24-car A-Main field broken down into:


    USA 4
    NSW 11
    VIC 3
    SA 2
    TAS 1
    NT 3

    *It’s interesting when you break down the Driver’s ORIGIN and the State that the car is from also:

    Kerry Madsen: NSW driver, WA Team
    Jason Johnson: USA driver, WA Team
    Robbie Farr: NSW driver, QLD Team
    Sam Walsh: NSW driver, NSW Team
    Logan Schuchart: USA driver, QLD Team
    Ian Madsen: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Troy Little: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Brooke Tatnell: NSW Driver, SA Team
    Shaun Dobson: TAS Driver, TAS Team
    Jordyn Brazier: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Dominic Scelzi: USA Driver, WA Team
    Marcus Dumesny: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Warren Ferguson: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Ben Atkinson: NT driver, NT team
    Steven Lines: SA driver, QLD Team
    Andrew Wright: NSW driver, NSW Team
    Matt Dumesny: NSW Driver, NSW Team
    Max Dumesny: VIC Driver, NSW Team
    Danny Reidy: NT Driver (QLD based) NT (QLD/NSW based) team
    David Murcott: VIC Driver, QLD Team
    Jake Tranter: SA Driver, SA Team
    Carson Macedo: USA driver, NSW Team
    James McFadden: NT Driver, WA Team
    Jamie Veal: VIC Driver, WA Team

    There were several drivers who improved their position significantly throughout the main event.

    Ian Madsen came from 14th to 6th.
    Brooke Tatnell came from 16th to 8th.
    Jordan Brazier came from 18th to 10th
    Warren Ferguson came from 22nd to 13th
    Marcus Dumesny came from 20th to 12th

    Scott Darley Challenge A-Main results:

    1. Kerry Madsen started 1st
    2. Jason Johnson started 3rd
    3. Robbie Farr started 4th
    4. Sam Walsh started 5th
    5. Logan Schuchart started 2nd
    6. Ian Madsen started 16th
    7. Troy Little started 11th
    8. Brooke Tatnell started 16th
    9. Shaun Dobson started 8th
    10. Jordyn Brazier started 18th
    11. Dominic Scelzi started 10th
    12. Marcus Dumesny started 20th
    13. Warren Ferguson started 22nd
    14. Ben Atkinson started 15th
    15. Steven Lines started 13th
    16. Andrew Wright started 23rd
    17. Matt Dumesny started 7th
    18. Max Dumesny started 17th
    19. Danny Reidy started 21st
    20. David Murcott started 19th
    21. Jake Tranter DNF started 24th
    22. Carson Macedo DNF started 12th
    23. James McFadden DNF started 6th
    24. Jamie Veal DNF started 11th
    B-Main result for Scott Darley Challenge:

    1. Danny Reidy
    2. Warren Ferguson
    3. Andrew Wright
    4. Jake Tranter (final A-Main transfer)
    5. Callum Williamson
    6. Daniel Sayre
    7. James Thompson
    8. Jessie Attard
    9. Alex Orr
    10. Grant Anderson
    11. Mitch Wormall
    12. Braydan Willmington
    13. Daniel Cassidy
    14. Jess Cassidy
    15. Buddy Kofoid
    16. Geoff Ensign
    17. Chris McInerney
    18. Paul Freeman
    19. James Duckworth
    20. Dean Brindle DNF
    21. Dean Thomas DNF
    22. Jackson Delamont DNF
    23. Thomas Jeffery DNF
    24. Jack Lee DNF

    C-Main result for Scott Darley Challenge

    1. Alex Orr
    2. Dean Brindle
    3. Daniel Cassidy
    4. Paul Freeman
    5. Shane Sheedy
    6. Luke Stirton
    7. Mark Attard
    8. Blake Darcy
    9. Peter Gordon
    10. Dylan Menz
    11. Steve Rowell
    12. Kaitlyn Anthony
    13. Chris Street
    14. Kristy Bonsey
    15. Peter O’Neill
    16. Courtney O’hehir
    17. Kris Jennings
    18. Mike Walsh
    19. Jeff Lawler
    20. Mick Matchett
    21. Matt Geering DNF
    22. Guy Stanshall DNF
    23. Karl Hoffmans DNF

    The Street Stocks played a successful role as support category and survived slippery conditions in their early laps of their marathon 20-lap A-Main before Dungog’s big man with the beard game strong Brendan Wakeman ran away with the victory.

    “Wako” in the Days of Thunder Cole Trickle tribute colours Holden Commodore battled for much of the race with Troy Dawes in the iconic “Where’s Wally” Commodore in second place with Stevie Walsh rounding out the General Motors trifecta.

    The next event on the Valvoline Raceway is next Saturday’s January 20th NSW Wingless Sprint Championship and Late Model Sedans, Street Stocks and AMCA Nationals.

    Ends release…
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