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Bradford beats rivals for Rd1 win


STARTING from p12 was no barrier for Shaun Bradford who claimed the opening round of the AHG Sprintcar Series at the Perth Motorplex on Sunday night.

The event was delayed after inclement weather forced officials to postpone the Shannons Powerpalooza on the Saturday - an event that also included drag racing, burnouts and car shows.

Bradford, who came up short when chasing victory at the Bonza Bradford Memorial in honour of his late father Ian in a 360 event at Pithara a week earlier, had the W57 on rails as he posted a convincing victory.

He won the 30-lap race from Andrew Priolo who was all smiles after starting from p7 and claimed his second ever podium result in an open sprintcar category.

Third was Jamie Maiolo who got better as the race went on, starting from P16 and moving up an impressive 13 places.

Fourth was defending AHG Series champion Brad Maiolo who started from p13 and was followed over the line by Mitchell Wormall who started from p14.

Jamie Oldfield, who started on the outside of the front row with Troy Lawson, led for much of the first half of the race in his 360 car and finished a credible sixth, from Darren Mewett (who started P11), Lawson (from pole), Jason Pryde (from P8), Adrian Haywood (from p3) and Scott Chatwin (from P9).

Oldfield was the early pacesetter, getting the jump on Lawson who struggled at the start and dropped back as far as 10th.

It was a great effort from the 360 guys who backed it up after contesting their own feature race a bit earlier where victory went to Lawson in a convincing drive.

Thomas Davies, who has stepped up from Formula 500 racing and started ROF, tagged the fence on the first lap and was out of the show.

This was followed by a couple of spins in pits bend that saw Jason Kendrick and Kye Scroop suffer damage and also be out of the contest early.

It didn’t take long for Manders to motor his way into third and his momentum continued, sliding into second by lap eight.
At the same time Bradford was coming through the pack and by lap 11 he was in third.

Ryan Lancaster, another driver in a 360 car, was making up some serious ground before he cut a tyre on lap 12.

Manders and Bradford continued their thrust forward with the latter hitting the lead on lap 14, followed by Manders into second.

Priolo started to make his presence felt and put himself into second on lap 17 and it didn’t take long before he put some distance between himself and Manders.

Daniel Harding, who arrived at the track late in a plain white car, minus sign writing, banged wheels with Manders on lap 26 and on the next lap Corey Hunter headed infield after cutting a left rear tyre.

Harding was out - with a flat right rear.

By the time the field had bunched up for restart with four laps remaining Jamie Maiolo was comfortably in third, followed by younger brother Brad and Manders who was struggling with major front-end damage, presumably from contact with Harding.

As the pack took the green Manders was unable to steer the W60 that spun out and was towed infield.

James Inglis also withdrew from the show with a failing right rear tyre.

Bradford set sail for home and Jamie Maiolo briefly showed his nose under Priolo but was unable to make a move stick.

Bradford was fast all night, setting quick time at the start of the show, being the only driver to dip into the 13-second at that stage with a 13.973-second lap, bettering that of Kendrick’s 14.065 and Jamie Maiolo’s 14.244.

The first heat of the summer went to Brad Maiolo from Wormall, Scroop, Pryde, Kendrick and Mewett.

Jamie Maiolo crossed the finish line first in the second heat but officials deemed he jumped the start (coming out of p5) and penalised him, seeing the win to go Manders from Bradford, Priolo, Inglis, then Maiolo, Hunter and Chatwin.

Round two of the AHG Sprintcar Series will be held at the Perth Motorplex this Saturday night.
 
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