The Aeroflow National Sportsman Championship has rung in the new year in style at South Coast Raceway this weekend, with more than 140 competitors taking to the Portland venue for the South Coast 660 – the first NDRC event of 2024.
As the Western Conference points battle heats up, every race win counts for the Aeroflow National Sportsman Championship racers and in Portland this weekend the following racers got their 2024 racing exploits off to the best possible start by claiming the event win and the prestigious Christmas Tree trophies in their respective brackets.
In Modified Bike, Jamie Dohnt took the win from last round winner Lucas Neagoe in a great final which saw the pair face off for the Christmas Tree following some great earlier match-ups.
Dohnt, of Mount Gambier East (SA), took opening wins against Cheryl Beddoes and Dean Jamieson in his Yamaha R1 before a round three bye and Neagoe defeated Derryn McGregor before a round two bye and a win over top qualifier, Corey Gathercole.
n Competition Bike, Edge Mallis had a very successful weekend at the race track with his Kawasaki H2R, with the Moonee Ponds (VIC) racer top qualifying before going on to take the event win over Joe Khoury – a defending Australian champion and the last round winner.
Competition Bike employs a three-round Chicago Shootout format, and Mallis and Khoury faced off in the final after Mallis had won races against Gavin Dohnt , Rob Church and Jake Hamilton-Moderate while Khoury had also taken three wins over Church, Hamilton-Moderate and Nathan Stone to earn his place in the final.
“It was a great weekend; we were actually de-tuning it and we still ended up breaking records. It worked out really well,” Mallis said.
“In the final for some reason it lost a bit of air and would not shift gears, but Joe red lit so we still got the win – sometimes you have got to be lucky and when it happens, you have to take it! Thank you to the crew – Daniel Fox, Mike Darcy, and Mick Donaghue – and to Blaze Hansen who was tuning the bike from Queensland. It was faultless all weekend.”
The NDRC Western Conference racers will not have to wait long for another shot at valuable championship points in the Aeroflow National Sportsman Championship, with the next Western Conference round to be held this coming weekend (January 13-14) as part of Dragway at The Bend’s Festival State Nationals.
Eastern Conference racers are meanwhile busily preparing for their next outing, which will come at Sydney Dragway’s Australia Day Nationals on January 26-27.