This series is going on my bucket list.
Local racer Steve Francis is getting off to an awesome start with the Australian Late Model title.
He'll be headed to Florida shortly to begin the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series, racing the #15 Georgia Boot Toyota Camry for Clint Bowyer Racing.
This is a release from the Australian series following the championship along with a couple of photos, and has been posted on Facebook.
Steve Francis Wins the 2013 Australian Dirt Late Model Championship
Press Release for Late Model Racing Australia by Allan Smallwood
American Late Model superstar Steve Francis has won the 2013 Australian Dirt
Late Model Championship at Quit Bunbury Speedway last night (January 12th).
Francis lead the forty lap championship A Main from start to finish and was
never defeated for the entire running of the Australian Championship.
Craig Vosbergen drove a great race to finish second from Warren Oldfield who
Thirty cars fronted for the second night of the Australian championship with
American Devin Moran and Ross Nicastri both sidelined with engine dramas after
the first night. South Australian Luke Raymond would also not start the second
night with mechanical issues.
Four heat races were held on the second night with drivers contesting one
heat each. Steve Francis would win heat nine comfortably over Ryan Halliday and
Warren Oldfield held off Matt Goodlad in heat ten with New South Wales
Darryl Grimson following them home in third.
Craig Vosbergen would continue to show he was a serious chance in the title
with another heat win in heat eleven with Vosbergen getting the job done ahead
of Matt Noakes and Mick Hamon who had a great battle for second for the entire
The final heat race of the weekend would see a depleted field contest the
ten laps with Lee Watt scoring maximum points ahead of Koran Atkinson and Matt
The top sixteen pointscorers at the end of all the heat races went on to
contest the A & B dashes over eight laps.
Steve Francis dominated the A dash, earning himself pole position for the A
main. Vosbergen, Warren Oldfield and Jamie Oldfield followed Francis home in
the A dash.
Jason Oldfield would lead the early laps of the B Dash before spinning in
turn one right in front of Darryl Grimson. Oldfield would retire to the infield
with issues in the rear of the MDR transport machine. Grimson would restart in
the lead and win the B Dash from Mick Hamon and Koran Atkinson.
A big opening lap accident would occur involving Brad Ludlow, Matt &
David Nylander and Dale Clark at the start of the B Main. David Nylander would
be the only driver to restart.
Jac Dolmans and Clint Noakes had a great battle for the lead in the B Main
with Noakes coming out on top. Matt Noakes got the better of Dolmans in the
closing laps finished second from Dolmans, Simon McNab, Ray Leonard and Peter
Seaton who all qualified into the A main. Mick Clune and Craig Greentree
rounded out the finishers with Mick Clune earning himself a starting position
in the A main after Jason Oldfield withdrew with mechanical issues.
Twenty two cars would start the forty lap championship A Main to decide the
2013 Australian Late Model Champion. Francis would lead away at the start with
Matt Goodlad and Koran Atkinson both retiring to the infield on the opening
After ten laps the first restart would occur when Mick Clune hit the
wall heavily in turn three. Clune would walk away from the nasty accident with
his car sustaining major damage.
Darryl Grimson would hit the wall on the back straight with twenty four laps
remaining ending the New South Welshman’s chances while running in seventh
Francis would continue to lead with the laps winding down with
Vosbergen comfortably in second place. Jac Dolmans and Mick Hamon would both
retire from the race with ten laps remaining with Francis lapping the field up
to fifth place.
Matt Noakes would make heavy contact with the wall with six laps remaining
bringing Francis back to the field for the sprint to the finish.
Francis would charge away at the restart and go on to comfortably to win his
second straight Australian championship over Vosbergen and Warren Oldfield.
Jamie Oldfield who was driving the Brad Blake owned Rocket held onto fourth
from Michael Holmes who finished in fifth after doing an engine changed before
the main event, Holmes started the race from fifteen.
Ryan Halliday would battle an ill handling racecar into a sixth place finish
from Lee Watt, Phil Zuidema, Paul Joss, Matt Crimmins, Clint Noakes and Simon
McNab who rounded out the finishers.
Francis was delighted in victory lane, “Great to win this race again, its
means a lot to me to come out here and win the title for Michael Holmes and his
Ozmine team. Hopefully I can continue the momentum when I go to the east coast
now for a couple more races”.
The 2014 Australian Dirt Late Model Championship will be held at the
picturesque Borderline Speedway in Mount
Gambier in South Australia. The Championship will be
held on the 6th, 7th& 8th of March 2014.
2013 Australian Late Model Championship A Main Official Placings
1. USA91 Steve Francis (40 Laps)
2. W8 Craig Vosbergen (40 Laps)
3. W15 Warren Oldfield (40 Laps)
4. W0 Jamie Oldfield (40 Laps)
5. W91 Michael Holmes (39 Laps)
6. W99 Ryan Halliday (39 Laps)
7. W10 Lee Watt (39 Laps)
8. W39 Phil Zuidema (38 Laps)
9. W22 Paul Joss (38 Laps)
10. SA10 Matt Crimmins (38 Laps)
11. W23 Clint Noakes (37 Laps)
12. W49 Simon McNab (37 Laps)
DNF W20 Matt Noakes (31 Laps)
DNF W57 Michael Hamon (28 Laps)
DNF W46 Jac Dolmans (27 Laps)
DNF NSW6 Darryl Grimson (14 Laps)
DNF W5 Ray Leonard (10 Laps)
DNF W3 Mick Cline (8 Laps)
DNF W9 Ben Ludlow (4 Laps)
DNF W65 Peter Seaton (2 Laps)
DNF W18 Matt Goodlad (0 Laps)
DNF W63 Koran Atkinson (0 Laps)