AUS: Willowbank news 2004-05-10

Willowbank's Mister Consistency Has Title in His Sights A maiden track championship title is in the sights of current Supercharged Outlaws leader Daniel Reed as he approaches this weekend's fifth round at Willowbank Raceway. Buoyed by first...

Willowbank's Mister Consistency Has Title in His Sights

A maiden track championship title is in the sights of current Supercharged Outlaws leader Daniel Reed as he approaches this weekend's fifth round at Willowbank Raceway.

Buoyed by first up success during the iTEL Nationals last November, the 23 year-old has made every post a winner claiming the runner-up tag the past two rounds and enjoying a 25 point buffer on equal second placed drivers Troy Pearson and Russell Schafer.

"The iTEL Nationals was the highlight of what has been a magnificent year for us and with the car running so well I'm sure we can remain competitive for the remainder of the season," said a delighted Reed.

"You can put it down to consistency in each round and out on the strip we're also securing an average light each time which has culminated in gaining us valuable points every time.

"We're getting down the track quite comfortably but aren't thinking too far ahead of ourselves at this stage.

"Confidence isn't a problem.

"A semi final finish in January has been our worst result so far, but you can't underestimate the capabilities of the other drivers in this extremely competitive bracket.

"Russell Schafer is an excellent driver and as the reigning titleholder he's a proven campaigner who knows how to win.

"But Troy Pearson is definitely the man to beat."

Reed has enjoyed a meteoric rise in the sport having cut his teeth in the regular Willowbank Raceway Street Meet series soon after his 17th birthday, before joining the Supercharged Outlaws bracket just last year.

He was placed fourth in 2003 and with a change of jobs during the early part of 2004 it's allowed him to focus a little more on his drag racing career.

"I'm an auto electrician by trade but have been driving trucks in the family's Brisbane-based transport company so there's been no lack of time behind the wheel and that may even be contributing to the recent successes.

"I'm definitely a lot more relaxed and having a little more flexibility in my job makes it so much easier to get more track time under my belt. The Reed family is something of an institution at Willowbank Raceway with Daniel's mother Debbie and father Steven currently placed 5th and 6th in the ANDRA Top Alcohol Championship Series that is being led by fellow Queenslander Gary Phillips.

That trend is certain to continue for many years as Daniel maintains his development of an obvious talent in quarter mile racing.

"In this game you're ambitions are always limited by the costs involved with running a competitive car, but with the right backing I'd love to one day be able to race a Top Fuel Funny Car in the States.

"Probably a more realistic goal, again with the proper backing, would be to compete in Top Doorslammer or perhaps even Top Fuel in Australia.

"I have more experience in the Alcohol type deal so that would be a good starting point in a professional career.

In other news, Willowbank Raceway officials are being inundated with a flood of enquiries and reserved grandstand bookings for this year's Winternationals.

The June 11-13 event is shaping as one of the biggest and best ever with driver entries now being taken for Australia's top drag racing feature.

"We expect to have a further three sections of the reserved grandstand seating areas sold out within the next two weeks, which is a truly remarkable feat considering there is still over a month to go before the start of the 37th Willowbank Winternationals," said Raceway General Manager Harry Rowsell.

"It's obvious with so many Queenslanders in the title hunt for all but one of the six professional brackets that's meant a great deal of support for the Winternationals.

"Gary Phillips holds a marginal lead in Top Alcohol ahead of fellow Queenslander Dean McLennan.

"Brett Stevens is blitzing Top Doorslammer and is joined by reigning champ Ben Bray, Victor Bray and Phillips in a competitive top five.

"Stevens is also well poised in Top Bike although Troy McLean will be keen to impress while Tony Wedlock is undefeated in Pro Stock and Denis Whiting placed third.

"Daniel Peatey has been doing the job all season in Pro Stock Bike and holds a forty point advantage over his nearest rivals leading into the Winternationals.

"Once again we can't stress enough the importance for fans to book their grandstand seats early to avoid disappointment.

"Of course the viewing mound is still an attractive option for families and with children 13 and under admitted free of charge that may be a more feasible option.

The Ipswich City Council is fully committed to motorsport in the region and is an active member of the Carnival of Horsepower promotion that seeks to encourage the general public to attend three major events on the Ipswich sporting calendar.

The Willowbank Raceway Winternationals will be held on June 11-13, the Ipswich Turf Club will host the Ipswich Cup on June 19 while V8 Supercars are featured during the 6th round of the Australian V8 Supercar Championship series at Queensland Raceway on July 2-4.

National Open Featuring iTEL Community Telco Supercharged Outlaws -- May 15

-www.willowbank-raceway.com.au

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