Brad Maiolo claimed his first ever feature race win at Quit Bunbury Speedway on Saturday night when he won the fourth round of the AHG Sprintcar Series Championship.
Maiolo started from P8 and won the 30-lap race from Jason Kendrick who started from P12 and Daniel Harding who came from P11.
The defending series champion was happy to finally get his first Bunbury win.
“I have never actually won here at Bunbury the whole time we have been racing, so it’s been a long time coming,” Maiolo said.
He was hunted down by Kendrick in the latter stages of the race and lost the lead just as Mitchell Wormall rolled over in turn one.
This created a restart with Maiolo inheriting the lead again and he was never challenged in the final seven laps.
He said when he was passed by Kendrick, he knew immediately he was on the wrong part of the track.
“But that’s the thing about leading and worrying about tyres and all the rest of it,” Maiolo said.
“We needed to stay up on the top (the high part of the track) and that’s what we did on the restart and brought it home.”
Kendrick lamented the red light stoppage that brought his barnstorming run to an end.
“The plan was to burn up a bunch of fuel and then start picking them off,” Kendrick said of his early-race strategy.
“We had a pretty hard (right rear) tyre so I was trying to burn it up on purpose and get some heat into it.
“Before the tyre got a bit of heat in it we were pretty loose so I moved the wing a fair way back and once that started I just had to slowly keep moving the wing back forward.”
Kendrick said it was tough to get through the pack.
“There were some slow guys that some of the fast guys were being super nice to and you come up on both of them and they are in the way – sometimes you just have to show them the way,” Kendrick said with a wry smile.
It was a solid night for Maiolo who claimed the Victory 1 Performance Quick Time Award at the start of the night with a 13.587 second lap to edge out big brother Jamie’s 13.596, Kendrick’s 13.896 and Jason Pryde’s 13.973 – the only four drivers to dip into the 13-second zone.
Heat race wins went to Maiolo, Jason Pryde, Robert Mould and Darren Mewett.
Corey Hunter didn’t even make it to the feature race after crashing hard in the first heat race of the night.
Scott Chatwin only lasted the first lap in the feature race before he went too wide and crashed into the fence on pits bend.
Round 5 of the AHG Sprintcar Series will be held at the Perth Motorplex on December 9, with sprintcars returning to Bunbury on December 30.