INCREASING costs are forcing low-budget sprintcar teams to squeeze every dollar as they fight to keep up with full-time drivers.
The weakness of the Australian dollar - it has plummeted more than 30 cents against the United States version in the past five years - has hit hard.
Many sprintcar parts, including Hoosier tyres, are manufactured in America.
Allansford driver Tim Van Ginneken, who is locked to race in Friday's South West Conveyancing Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic qualifying night, said racing was a labour of love.
"Sprintcar racing has always been dear, but when I started six years ago, it was affordable for the smaller teams," he said.
Sprintcar racing has always been dear, but when I started six years ago, it was affordable for the smaller teams.Tim Van Ginneken
"You're having to cut back on tyres a bit. If you're using second-hand tyres, it can cost you a couple of places in a race.
"It's a bit of a gamble. When I first started in sprintcars, you were paying $210 for a right rear but now it's about $425."
Van Ginneken said family had taken precedence but wanted to continue racing while his son, Chase, was interested.
"He's that into it now where I'll leave the shed, come back and I wouldn't even need to check the bolts on my wheels they're done up that tight," he laughed.
"It's absolutely great. The other night we had the car in the transporter and I said 'we'll get it out tomorrow'.
"I walked in to say goodnight and he's saying 'Dad, I think we should unload this car tonight'.
"He's going to bed thinking about it. I'd like to keep going with him for a while. It'll be great when he can jump in the car with me and go to a few meetings."
Van Ginneken said the opportunity to battle some of sprintcar racing's best at the classic was enticing .
"I remember the first time I came up against Max Dumesny in hot laps and thought 'oh wow'. I never thought that would happen," he said. "On the track, they're just another car. I'm not afraid to throw a slider at a Kyle Larson if I need to."
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