Under the setting Albury sun, with music blaring and a travelling company of Belle Vue fans keeping a keen eye on their favourite, Max Fricke, Round 4 of the 2019 Australian Senior Solo Speedway Championship was a treat for riders and fans alike. In front of a packed-out crowd, Fricke took the overall win and expanded his lead to eight points ahead of Rohan Tungate and Chris Holder.
At a new and improved track hosted by the Albury Wodonga Motorcycle Club, riders navigated a wider track that played well into the hands of Tungate, Morris and Fricke. Although comfortable on the track, Morris just couldn’t keep up the pace with his competition and finished the evening in eighth place. Sixth place was awarded to Jaimon Lidsey, who took out two wins, one second and two thirds, scoring a total of 10 points for the round. Lidsey qualified for the B Final but couldn’t manage to push his way through, finishing the race in third. Ahead of Lidsey on 12 points was the fiery Jack Holder, who achieved two wins, two seconds and a third during his heats. Holder’s efforts yesterday evening qualified him into the B Final, against the likes of Lidsey, brother Chris Holder and Sam Masters, where he finished second.
In an impressive turn of events after a quiet start to the Championship, Brady Kurtz ended the evening in fourth place, scoring a total of 12 points. Kurtz came into the evening with a fire in his belly, dominating quickly and early in his heats, taking out two wins, two seconds and a third! Automatically qualifying into the A Final, Kurtz unfortunately seemed to lose the momentum he worked tirelessly to build, ending the race and round in fourth place behind Chris Holder.
On 12 points and in third place overall for Round 4, Chris Holder gave spectators an unforgettable show as he clawed back from a slow start in Heat 1, taking out two firsts, one second and two thirds, and qualifying into the B Final. As the Albury temperature dropped, Holder’s determination turned up the heat, blazing a trail and keeping his rivals at bay behind his tail. Taking the win in the B Final and therefore securing the remaining spot in the A Final, Holder just couldn’t push past Tungate and Fricke, settling instead for third place overall at Round 3.
Second place overall was clinched by Rohan Tungate, ahead of Holder on 17 points. Tungate had a fantastic evening where he was a devil behind the bars, dominating the evening with four wins and one second place finish during his heats. Qualifying immediately into the A Final, Tungate had his sights set on the gold and top podium glory, but couldn’t match Fricke’s speed, finishing the race and round in second place.
Reflecting on the evening and ride at Albury’s new and improved complex, Tungate stated; “It was a tough match and the track wasn’t ideal in the end. The club did a really great job overall, but the track just didn’t work, so it was a tough round.
“I’m definitely looking forward to Kurri Kurri! It’s my home track and feel comfortable on it, so I just need to go in with a clear head and try and get the win!”
Crowned first place winner of Round 4 was 22-year-old Fricke, who continued his success from Undera at another local track located just two hours from home, ending the evening with 18 points. Fricke’s heats were a sight to see as he started the round off with a second-place finish, but quickly recovered to take out first place in his remaining four! Heading into the A Final, Fricke started from the inside and tangoed with Holder and Tungate early. It didn’t take Fricke long though to leave his rivals eating dirt and expanding his lead in the Championship by eight points!
As humble as ever, Fricke stood by his mantra of remaining cool, calm and collected in order to win the Championship, explaining that, “It’s nice to have another win at a track that’s close to home! The main point is that we’re keeping consistent and picking up as many points as we can. If I can continue increasing my point lead little by little, that’s what will get me the Championship title!
“Tonight showed me just how fast Rohan is! He rides really well at tracks like this, which makes beating him feel even better!
“I’m excited to head to Kurri Kurri next. It’s a good track and I’ve had some success there in the past, but I also know that Rohan and Chris are both very good there, so I need to make the most of practice and see how we go!
“With an eight-point lead, I just need to be reliable and consistent as any bike issue or injury could ruin my chances of a Championship title,” highlighted Fricke.
The final round of the 2019 Australian Senior Solo Speedway Championship will be held at Loxford Park Speedway in Kurri Kurri, New South Wales on Saturday 12th January.
All current results and standings in the Championship are now available to access via the Results section of the Australian Speedway Championships website!