The debut of the Speed Energy Stadium Super Trucks this weekend at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide brought the house down, with three seat of the pants races climaxing with a finish in the final race like no other.
In Friday’s first SST race Racing virtuoso EJ Viso claimed first blood, cruising to a convincing victory with a smooth drive that belied experience. Insulated from the mid-field drama, the former IndyCar wheelman enjoyed smooth sailing up front. Unable to reel him in, Gordon and his signature orange truck settled for second place.
With a smile barely obscured by his helmet, Gold Coast stunt man Matt Mingay had a strong showing, excluding a jarring moment after an aggressive approach to a jump. “Yeah I nearly went front over on the front straight” said Mingay. “Everyone thought I was gone, with good reason, I thought I was as well.
Undeterred, Mingay realigned his sights and hunted Gordon and Viso to claim third place, keeping the Aussies in the top end of the game.
In the second race round of the SST’s at the Clipsal 500 17-year old teen Sheldon Creed out leapt, out slid and out did his veteran opposition to declare victory. In a race that changed leads frequently, second place getter Robby Gordon pursued Creed over the line less than half a second behind. The orange #7 truck was followed in four seconds later by ‘Mayor of air’ Matt Mingay. The aggressive bronze finish is the Gold Coast local’s second podium in two races.
The last Toyo Tires Stadium Super Trucks race of the Clipsal 500 saw the drivers aiming to win it, bin it, or both. Second generation off-road racing champion Keegan Kincaid added a win on Aussie soil to his resume in a fierce final round at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide. Suffering mechanical failure and a DNF in race two, Kincaid grabbed P1 early in lap two, and held off stiff competition with a calculating drive to top the podium.
Kincaid was followed by Robby Gordon in his third second place from three races. The motorsport virtuoso also claiming the outright points win for the Adelaide round. A four-lap battle for second place was fought between Gordon, Matt Mingay and Sheldon Creed. Gordon slammed through and gave Creed the ID check he had been building to all weekend, on the final corner of the final lap, pushing him off line and into third.
Buttoned down, Creed’s final jump registered with Adelaide Airport flight control. An unforgettable landing, a seriously out of shape Creed crossed the finish line backwards, rolling and then bouncing off the Armco rubber side down. Carrying on with a cool down lap, the Alpine, California high school senior paused only to throw a ‘hang loose’ sign to a wide-eyed crowd.
Narrowly edged off the podium after a bin it or win it race, Mingay clocked fourth in the bright blue Hot Wheels SST. The stunt man was chased in by local legend Brad Gallard in the Peter Kittle Motorsport/Toyo Tires SST, who held a strong pace despite a bone jarring landing off the huge Traxxas jump after turn 10. Gallard was followed in by a hard charging Nathan Pretty, fresh off the V8 Utes Grid. Charles Dorrance registered seventh.
After handing the keys to Geddit Racing’s Billy Geddes for Saturdays race, Dakar place getter Toby Price arrived back in Adelaide on Sunday to take the reigns of the Geddit / KTM backed SST and kept the US dominated field honest in eighth. Bill Hynes and EJ Viso filled out the field after suffering uncharacteristically troubled performances.
The 650hp Stadium Super Trucks built in Robby Gordon’s North Carolina workshop all run the Toyo Open Country AT II Tyres which are the control tyre of the series. Rumours of a re-appearance at 2016’s Clipsal 500 and possible local SST races before have been rife as the series exploded over print and social media.
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