Victorian Brock Atkins has fulfilled a life long ambition at the Heartland Raceway in Moama after he won the 2022 Speedway Sedans Australia National Modified Sedan Championship.
Atkins got the better of an outstanding battle with good friend Kye Walters in the concluding stages of a thrilling forty lap main event before an appreciative crowd at the venue which sits on the Victorian/New South Wales border.
Kingaroy’s Brett Barron led the point standings coming into the final night, with the final round of heats producing plenty of drama.
Reigning National Champion Kye Walters aboard the True Design Homes Ford Falcon locked himself into a second row starting position for the A Main by taking victory in the opening heat of the second night.
A multi car opening corner pile up sidelined Matt Nelson, Ash Parkinson and Marcus Reddecliffe on the first lap of heat twenty, leaving just seven cars for the resumption.
Nick Cockerill held off the advances of Townsville’s Adam Jorgensen (driving the very popular Ford Cortina) to take the thirty six points.
Queensland’s David “Tangles” Head did a stellar job in heat twenty one to hold off Darcy Wilson, with the battle for the minor placings a great spectacle.
Mick Shelford in the Pro1 Race Parts Holden Commodore found form in heat twenty two to claim victory.
Heat twenty three had the crowd on their feet as Mick Boyle drove around the outside of the battling Brock Atkins, Jarod Waters and Scott Angus to record a very popular victory.
Former National SSA Junior Sedan Champion Todd Atkins led all the way in the final heat of the weekend to lock up an A Main start in his Club 36 Innovations Ford Falcon.
The first two of two B Mains saw Rodney Pammenter, Matt Gerlach and Zac Swanson advance into the A Main after Swanson found a way past Kingaroy’s Alex Sweeney in the concluding stages.
Toowoomba’s Nathan Macdonald entertained the fans on the hill and at home in the second B Main by passing on the outside of many competitors to steal the final transfer position from Brad Warren.
Macdonald started from position twenty two for the main event as Victorians Wade McCarthy and Matt Nelson finished first and second in the final preliminary race of the title.
Twenty two cars faced the green flag for the main event to decide the 2022 SSA National Modified Sedan Championship with Jarod Waters and Brett Barron sharing the front row.
Waters got the better of the start with Barron falling back to sixth place on the opening lap.
Lap two and the first stoppage occurred with 2012 National Champion David Smith, Matt Gerlach and Rodney Pammenter all out of the race with heavy damage after coming together.
Waters led away after the restart as Kye Walters, Max Clarke and Brock Atkins battled for the minor placings.
Atkins moved past Clarke into third and then was soon into second as he found a way past Walters.
The driver of the V0 Ford Falcon set out after the race leader with the 2022 Kings Royal Champion hitting the lead on lap eighteen after a fierce battle with Waters.
The V92 Mercedes was soon back to fourth place by lap twenty four as Walters and Clarke moved past into the podium positions.
Adam Jorgensen retired with a flat tyre on lap twenty five after sitting as high as seventh place in what was a disappointing end to the weekend for the North Queensland based driver.
The second stoppage came about after Ty Galley in the N0 Toyota Lexcen collected the concrete wall on lap twenty nine setting up a thrilling run to the flag.
Drama unfolded as the cars rolled around under the yellow lights when Nick Cockerill headed infield with an engine issue while in sixth place.
The final laps of the main event were a thrilling affair as Walters threw everything at the race leader Brock Atkins, as the two Ford Falcons banged panels for the National Title.
Walters hit the lead momentarily on lap thirty three as Atkins fought back against his former Junior Sedan sparring partner.
The V0 Ford Falcon driver negotiated the final laps to win his maiden Australian Championship in SSA Modified Sedans by 1.863 seconds from Walters and Jarod Waters rounding out the top three.
Todd Atkins drove a smart race to finish fourth after originally starting in position seven with 2011 National Champion Max Clarke officially fifth.
Just eleven cars completed the distance in what was a thrilling conclusion to a great weekend.
Brock Atkins was a relieved winner in victory lane as his thanked his family and friends with particular attention paid to his parents Kellie and Greg along with younger brother Todd who make it all possible for the team to contest major events around the country.
Atkins will defend the SSA National Modified Sedan Championship at Albany’s Attwell Park Speedway in Western Australia Easter 2023.
A Main, 40 Laps – 1. V0 Brock Atkins, 2. A1 Kye Walters, 3. V92 Jarod Waters, 4. V36 Todd Atkins, 5. N15 Max Clarke, 6. V33 Daniel Simpson, 7. V32 Brody Chrystie, 8. Q23 Tim Atkin, 9. V17 Brad Wicks, 10. V5 Darcy Wilson, 11. V6 Wade McCarthy, DNF Jay Nicolaisen (37), V61 Matt Nelson (33), VA11 Nick Cockerill (30), Q32 Nathan Macdonald (30), Q148 Brett Barron (30), N0 Ty Galley (29), Q25 Adam Jorgensen (25), VA15 Zac Swanson (15) V19 David Smith (1), Q8 Rodney Pammenter (1), V14 Matt Gerlach (1), Quick Time A1 Kye Walters 20.859.