Adelaide’s Gillman Speedway Stadium will host the first round of the Australian 500cc Solo Championship on Wednesday night (4 January), following just 24 hours after the rescheduled SA Championship on Tuesday night.
Last season’s national championship was not decided until the last race of the four round series, and this season’s championship looks like it will be another thrilling affair also likely to go down to the wire.
Twelve international riders will take part in the series and all twelve look capable of reaching one of the series finals this season so consistency will be the key to overall victory.
Last season there were four different winners of the four rounds — Rohan Tungate, Nick Morris, Brady Kurtz and Justin Sedgmen — and all four are back again this season, along with last season’s runner-up, Sam Masters.
Although Masters did not win a round last season he qualified for the final at every round and finished just one point behind Championship winner Brady Kurtz, who was the only other rider to qualify for every final.
Masters has ridden in the past two Australian Speedway Grand Prix at Etihad Stadium, so the fact he did not win a final last season indicates the intensity of the competition.
Other riders from last season’s top nine finishers are World Under 21 Champion Max Fricke, Australian Under 21 Champion Jack Holder, Mason Campton and Tyron Proctor.
The line-up will be further enhanced by the return of three leading riders, after several years’ absence, Troy Batchelor, Todd Kurtz and David Watt. Batchelor, the 2013 champion, and Watt, the 2012 runner-up, won the Victorian and Queensland Championships respectively last month, while Kurtz was runner-up to Tungate in the New South Wales Championship.
Competing the line-up are talented youngsters Jaimon Lidsey, Josh Pickering, Cooper Riordan and Jordan Stewart, who are all capable of taking points from the international riders as they have proven in this season’s various State championships.
Last season’s final standings: 1 Brady Kurtz, 2 Sam Masters, 3 Max Fricke, 4 Rohan Tungate, 5 Nick Morris, 6 Justin Sedgmen, 7 Jack Holder, 8 Mason Campton, 9 Tyron Proctor, 10 Brodie Waters, 11 Jordan Stewart, 12 Josh Pickering, 13 Alan Macdonald, 14 Kieran Sproule, 15 Josh Grajczonek, 16 Cooper Riordan.
Everything You Need To Know:
Meeting Date: Wednesday, 4 January 2017.
Venue: Gillman Speedway Stadium, 65 Wilkins Road, Gillman – near the Port Adelaide area.
Gates open: at 3 pm.
Parking and entrance: Patrons can enter via two gates, at the western and eastern ends of the venue. There are parking areas near both gates. The eastern gate will close at 8.30pm.
Racing starts: at 7.30 pm. Free spectator access to the pits for a close look at the bikes until approximately 5.00 pm. Practice at 5 pm to 6 pm.
CBS Bins Australian Championship Round 500cc Solos : Troy Batchelor (SA), Mason Campton (NSW), Max Fricke (Vic), Jack Holder (NSW), Brady Kurtz (NSW), Todd Kurtz (NSW), Jaimon Lidsey (Vic), Sam Masters (NSW), Nick Morris (Qld), Josh Pickering (NSW), Tyron Proctor (Vic), Cooper Riordan (Vic), Justin Sedgmen (Vic), Jordan Stewart (Vic), Rohan Tungate (NSW), David Watt (Qld). Series reserves: James Davies (Vic), Matthew Gilmore (NSW), Dakota Ballantyne (SA), Alan Macdonald (NSW).
Format: 16 riders x 20 heats plus a last chance semi-final and a final. The 4th to 7th highest scorers go into the semi-final; and the winner of the semi-final and the three highest scorers from the 20 heats go into the final.
Solo 250cc, Under 16, support riders : Fraser Bowes (SA), Tom Dixon (Vic), Liam May (SA), Jack Norman (SA), Bailey Viner (Qld).
Admission prices: Adults $30, Age Pension and Student Concession $25 (*), Children aged 12-15 $10, Under 12 FREE, Family Tickets $70. Grandstand seating $5. Parking free. Souvenir programme $5.
(*) Concession is limited to Centrelink Pensioner Concession Card and Student Concession Card holders only. A family ticket covers 2 adults and children under 16.
Programme: 28 page souvenir programme with colour action and portrait photographs of the 16 championship riders and a history of the Championship from 1926 to 2016.
Seating: 216 seat grandstand; terracing and large grassed viewing mounds suitable for deck chairs.
VIP Area: The V.I.P. area is available to anyone who would like to treat their business colleagues, family or friends to the best view of motorcycle speedway action in Australia. Spectators can enjoy the elevated view overlooking the track, either from inside the temperature controlled room, on the timber decks, or the enclosed lawn area, for a very reasonable price per person. A fully stocked bar and a variety of food to suit all budgets is available and you can book the whole room or part thereof. Ring Gillman Speedway Manager David Parker on 0403 364 658 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Food and drink: Full bar and catering available. Food includes hot chips, hamburgers, chicken burgers, pies, pasties, sausage rolls, Chiko Rolls, dim sims, hot dogs, doughnuts, coffee, cold drinks, sweets. “Gillman has far and away the best speedway tucker” [Peter White’s Speedway World]
Please note a condition of our liquor licence is no byo alcohol or glass can be brought into the venue. Also note no pets, other than guide dogs, are allowed into the venue.
Souvenirs: There is a well-stocked souvenir shop including the latest Blackchrome manufactured shirts and jackets. Eftpos available only in the souvenir shop.
Weather Forecast: Maximum 33, minimum 17. Sunny. [www.bom.gov.au/sa/forecasts/Adelaide]
Australian Championship Round 1 Sponsor: CBS Bins
CBS Bins is a family owned and operated businesses which commenced in 1975 when Graham and Marion Baker started in business with the purchase of a model 610 Bobcat. As the years progressed they were joined by their sons Steven, Mark and Darren, and today CBS Bins has grown into one of South Australia’s leading waste and rubbish removal companies. Sadly Graham passed away in January 2013, but his family continues to support Gillman Speedway and Graham’s past support has been remembered by the western end terraced area being named The Graham Baker Terrace. Website [www.cbsbins.com.au]
The best way to get to Gillman Speedway is off Hanson Road.
If you are coming from the eastern and southern suburbs, get on to Hanson road off Torrens Road or Grand Junction Road, travel north on Hanson road over the train line then take the first road on the left, which is Wilkins road.
From the northern suburbs, travel down the new Port Adelaide expressway and take the Hanson Road exit. Once on Hanson Road, take the first exit on your right, this is Wilkins road.
From the western suburbs, Wilkins Road is the continuation of Bedford Street, north of Eastern Parade.
For interstate visitors flying into Adelaide and getting a hire car, Gillman is about 20kms, and 30 minutes’ drive (depending on traffic lights) from the airport. The easiest and most direct way from the airport, if not going to your accommodation first is:
On leaving the airport, turn left onto Sir Donald Bradman Drive. Continue along Sir Donald Bradman Drive until you reach the end of the airport grounds and turn right onto Tapleys Hill Road. Once you are on Tapleys Hill Road you can’t really go wrong. You only have to make three or four turns and most of those are simple. Just keep going on Tapleys Hill Road until you can’t go any further. That’s Port Road. Turn left onto Port Road (you can only turn left, so pretty easy to this point). Continue down Port Road for about 1 km to the first intersection which is Grand Junction road and turn right. You only go 700 metres along Grand Junction Road over a bridge over a railway line. Stay in the left lane because at the bottom of the bridge you turn left into Gray Terrace. Go to the end of Gray Terrace and turn right (you can’t go straight ahead) onto Bedford Street. Just keep going on that road until you get to the speedway. About 2 kms.
Accommodation: There is plenty of accommodation in Adelaide and suburbs, within 20-30 minutes of the Speedway, ranging from five star hotels to caravan parks and backpacker hostels. The Pavlos Motel on Main North Road, Pooraka offers a discount to speedway fans but you must ring the motel direct and ask for the Gillman Speedway discount. Full details are on the Gillman website under the information/accommodation tab. An exciting new accommodation venue, Quest Port Adelaide, has recently opened only five minutes from the track. Quest Port Adelaide has modern studio, one, two and three bedroom apartments.
Contact for this meeting: Speedway Manager, David Parker 0403 364 658