QUEENSLAND Speedcar Racing Association president John Dean has praised Carina Speedway after the state titles were run this weekend in the first round of the Five Crown series.
After the last event was washed out in November the final event of the year saw featured the Speedcar titles in conjunction with the
compact speedcar titles, modlites and super sedans.
The main event of the night featured a major surprise with Michael Harders beating Australian and Queensland champions to take the crown in the speedcar.
With tyre problems proving to be an issue for drivers Harders took a conservative approach to racing and was able to work his way to the front and hold off Scott Wilson for the win.
Talking to the NewsMail after the win Harders was over the moon.
"It's the first time I've won a state title in over 20 years of racing so I'm pumped for our team," he said.
"The last few laps were difficult but I'm pleased to seal the win."
Harders believed his decision to conserve his tyres was the difference.
"As those in front of me struggled with their tyres, I knew I had to conserve mine," he said.
"The aim was to be smooth with the throttle and I just made it home. My tyres would not have lasted another two laps if we continued."
He also thanked his wife and kids for supporting him all the way.
"We are a motorsport family and they make a lot of sacrifices for me so it is a big thank you to them," he said.
The Queensland Speedcar Racing Association were pleased to see Harders win, but were a little disappointed with the entry list.
President John Dean said 30 was the original goal.
"Being so close to Christmas it really didn't help the numbers as many interstate competitors struggled to get up here," he said.
"We also had a couple of entries out because of engine dramas so it was a combination of reasons."
Dean though was full of praise for the Carina Speedway.
After seeing it close in 2006 and knowing what it could cost to re-open the track back then, he was pleased with what he saw at the event.
"I was wrapped and I take my hat off to Peter and the team at the speedway," he said.
"I hope he has nothing but success and the locals embrace it."
Promoter Peter Basmadjian said the event was well supported.
"It was one of our best attended nights and both our event and the Petrol Cowboys was supported well," he said.
"My highlight for the night was the compact speedcar titles with Matt Jurczak winning on the final corner after a tyre failure to Darren Vine. It was a thrilling race."