Summerland Drags filling fast

With a maximum capacity of 150 cars and 30 motorcycles, spots in this year's Beef Week Summerland Drags are filling fast.
With a maximum capacity of 150 cars and 30 motorcycles, spots in this year's Beef Week Summerland Drags are filling fast. Carol Kilby

CASINO mother of one, Debbie Mortimer hasn’t decided yet whether she will enter her VE GTS Holden Commodore with a 500hp engine in the Beef Week Summerland Drags on Saturday but time may be against her.

With a maximum capacity of 150 cars and 30 motorcycles, the treasurer of Summerland Drags, Denis Brown, said spots were filling fast.

“We already have more than 100 cars registered for the drag racing,” he said.

“I expect we will have reached our limit by the time the event is on.”

Debbie, along with husband Anthony, has been involved with cars for more than 20 years.

“I used to watch the Bathurst races with dad,” she laughed.

“I’ve done heaps of promotional work with companies like Castrol and I also used to race the black Gemini.”

The black Gemini is in reference to her husband’s car that will definitely be at the races this Saturday.

“It’s got $30,000 worth of engine in it but I’m not out to break any land speeds,” he said. “I just think it’s awesome that something like this (the drag racing) has come up in our home town.”

The course is run over an eighth of a mile according to Australian National Drag Racing Association standards for amateur drag racers.

“It’s all very safe and supervised by ANDRA,” Richmond Valley Councillor Owen Crawford said.

Cr Crawford has his modified Altered registered for the upcoming race and is looking forward to the event.

“It takes six seconds to race down the course and the cars go two at a time.”

This year there will be motorcycles featured in the drags in the ‘Mr 2 Wheels Knockout’ sponsored by Go Motors of Lismore.

“Drag racing really is a very technical sport,” Mr Mortimer said.

“It’s probably 95% technical and 5% driving.

“You may be up at 2am getting the car going, or checking the air velocity and tyre pressure.

“You are always working out how to make the car go faster while running against the clock.”

Both the Mortimers and Cr Crawford agreed it was better for many car enthusiasts to get the ‘speed demon’ out of their system in a safe and enjoyable environment rather than on public roads.

“It will be an event for the whole family to come and watch,” Mr Brown said.

“We expect crowds of around 3000 people.

“I’m even thinking this old bean counter will borrow his son’s SS Commodore and give it a go.”

Beef Week President Stuart George said the Summerland Drags added another dimension to Beef Week.

“The event opens up Beef Week to a whole new audience,” he said.

“We are thrilled to have them on board again.”

The North Coast Wholesale Cars and Summerland Drags will be the first official event of Beef Week on Saturday, May 21, starting at 12pm at the Casino Aerodrome.

Aside from the ‘Mr 2 Wheels Knockout’ it will also feature four, six and eight cylinder street cars and an exhibition of turbo/supercharged sedans.

Gates open at 10am and the cost is $20 with children under 12 free.

Topics:  beef week drag racing summerland drags

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