By Ebony McQuinn.
A busy final week of 2023 for Chief Racing with three nights of racing. First to Simpson for the regular SRA Open series, and then to Mt Gambier and Avalon to begin our speedweek campaign.
It had been a long time since Chief Racing had made it to Simpson. With a history of strong performances there, the team was looking forward to it. The night opened with a strong performance as cars completed time trials. Cam Watethe rs was the fastest in his group, earning him the title of quick time. The V6 sprintcar and Waters appeared to be in sync as this pace continued into heats. Starting out of five for the first heat of the evening, Waters was quick to start passing; moving himself up to 2nd at the end of the 10 laps.
Being 2nd in points for the evening, Waters had qualified for his first A-Main shootout as he was put against Jamie Veal in the gold dash. However, Waters was unable to put a fast enough lap together as he finished 4th. The A-Main had plenty of drama as many cars failed to finish the race. Waters, starting out of four managed to avoid trouble. Moving into 3rd quickly, Waters spent the majority of the race battling with Jamie Veal for 2nd. With 8 laps left, Veal crashed, leaving Waters to claim 2nd- where he finished the race. His equal career-best finish in the 410 car.
Despite having our worst performance there in the previous year, the team felt good heading to Mt Gambier after the previous night's performance. Alas, the bad luck had followed the team. Failing to record a good lap in time trials Waters finished 4th in his group, putting him out of six in the heat.
The bad luck got worse as Waters lost two positions to finish in 8th, relegating him to start out of 10 in B-Main 1. The worst performance for the team since their last trip to Mt Gambier. Waters did manage to move up three spots, alas it was not enough for the A-Main.
It seemed that the team were stuck in a bad dream going into Avalon. Water's results were repeating those in Mt Gambier, only slightly worse. Unfortunately, the crew struggled to find pace in the car and Waters struggled to drive it.
Tonight the team will race at Premier Speedway to close out Speedweek.
"Had a great night being back at Simpson. Time trialled quickest, had a great run through the heat- started 6th and ran 2nd. Didn't have the best run in the shootout, which put us out of 4th. Obviously started 4th in the final. Got to 3rd and was racing Jamie Veal, but he got caught with some lapped traffic. Bit of bad luck to miss the battle but, managed to bring it home in 2nd and come home with a straight car.
"Didn't have the best of runs at Mt Gambier or Avalon. On both nights we were okay in time trials but struggled in our heats. We learned a lot and we'll bounce back at Warrnambool tonight."
Photos by Ebony McQuinn