IN his first season driving sprintcars, Terang’s Brad Warren says he has exceeded his own expectations.
The 18-year-old has overcome a horror run mid-season to sit sixth in the Sprintcar Racing Association of Victoria series standings.
“I don’t think as a team we were expecting to be in the top 10 during our first season (in sprintcars),” he told The Standard.
“All our expectations have been exceeded. There was no way I expected to be where I am now,” he said.
Warren said a good result at Hamilton last weekend had lifted his spirits after a “shocking run” of bad luck around the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic.
“In Classic week I smashed up the car at Avalon and then I did an engine during the Classic,” he said. “That cost plenty of money, but that’s racing, it happens.”
Last weekend he shook the hoodoo with a fourth- place in round nine of the SRA series in Hamilton. “We had a good run, and kept our nose clean,” he said.
“I finished second in heat one and first in heat two, which put me through to the top-six shootout for the first time.
“I managed to stay in second place, which put me off the front row in the A main.”
Warren said in one of the many restarts, he hit a small amount of trouble, and overshot the cushion.
“That caused me to lose some ground,” he said.
“But it was a good round. A fourth place is nothing to sneeze at.”
Warren said it was satisfying to be able to challenge drivers who have bigger budgets.
“The reality is the bigger the budget you have, the better you will do,” he said. “I probably have one of the smallest budgets and an engine that isn’t packing as much as some of the other guys, so being able to get up the front with them feels pretty good.”
Warren said the car was “110 per cent ready” for this weekend’s double-header at Simpson Speedway tonight and Avalon Raceway tomorrow.
“The plan is to go in and keep the car straight and keep my nose clean,” he said. “We went into the season just wanting to win a few races. We never expected to be in the top 10 and now we are there, that’s where we want to stay.”
With only three rounds of the series remaining, the double-header is make or break for defending series champion Darren Mollenoyux, who is second in the standings, 195 points behind Matthew Reed.
Gates at Simpson Speedway open at 4pm, with racing from 6pm.