Amongst a stout 30-car plus field, it was Matt Hardy who took out the top honours in last Saturday night’s NSW AMCA Nationals Title at Gilgandra Speedway.
With no shortage of talent in the feature-race field, the current Australian and Queensland Champion made the most of his front row starting position alongside pole-sitter and past NSW Champion Tim Reidy (Vic), keeping within striking distance of the race leader, before being elevated to first place when Reidy suffered suspension damage, ultimately dropping back to seventh place, due to his ailing car.
Despite increasing pressure from current Victorian Champion Jamie Collins (Vic), he was unable to make a move on Hardy (Qld), who used his experience to defend his position, impressively going on to score his third title win in the space of 12 months.
Jason Molle (Qld) put in a strong drive to claim the final podium place in third, while Steve Potts (Qld) and Dean Ballard (Qld) rounded out the top-five finishers.
Russ Hardy (Matt’s dad) came home in sixth, ahead of Reidy, Shane Cartwright (NSW), who was the best finisher for the host state, and final finisher Dean Heseltine (Vic).
The infield greeted a steady influx of cars, with more than half of the field retiring from the feature race, including defending NSW Champion Daniel Brooks (Tas), who was out of contention in the early stages. Tony Blanch (NSW), Justin Hackett (NSW), Shane Anderson (NSW), Thomas Vickery (Qld), Peter Markulin (NSW), Trent Keeler (NSW), Grant Cullinger (Vic), Lewis Gamble (NSW), Kai Simmons (Qld) and Spano Gutierrez (NSW) were also unable to finish the feature race.
The three rounds of heat races earlier in the night saw no drivers achieve multiple wins, with wins shared between Molle, Potts, Anderson, Cartwright, Brooks, Collins, Matt Hardy, Ballard and Hackett, while Reidy’s consistency saw him come away with three second-place finishes.
Anderson was the best in the B main, securing a transfer spot into the feature race, along with Gutierrez, Heseltine and Simmons.
Matt Hardy will be hoping to carry his winning form into the upcoming Australian AMCA Nationals Title, which is set to be held at Kalgoorlie Speedway in Western Australia on March 3-5.
To find out more about AMCA Nationals, visit their website at www.amcanationals.com.au or LIKE them on Facebook by searching AMCA Nationals.