by Geoff Rounds
A stirring speech by one of the AFL’s greats is what Shaun Dobson is hoping can propel him to a much-needed victory at Avalon Raceway this Saturday night.
Dobson was addressed by former Melbourne and North Melbourne premiership player Stan Alves last weekend prior to finishing eighth in the 2014 Australian Sprintcar Championship at Latrobe Speedway in his native Tasmania.
Dobson said the inspiring speech “has stuck with him” and he hopes to adopt Alves’ life experiences to a victory in the seventh round of the Eureka Garages and Sheds Series this weekend.
“What Stan said has really got to me. It wasn’t just about racing, but it was about life itself,” Dobson said.
“Just to hear how tough he did it and he came through it and played at the top level after so much rejection before he got picked up to play footy. It proved to me you can’t let things in life get you down. I guess for me we’ve been up and down and really need a win to boost my points.”
With a total of 400 points on offer for a perfect night’s racing, Dobson will have a tough assignment, and with nearly 50 sprintcars entered he will be looking to close the gap of 229 points behind current series leader Dubbo’s Jeremy Cross.
This round will mark the halfway point of the series and Dobson has been in superb form of late with strong performances in the recent President’s Cup at Avalon and the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic at Warrnambool.
“It’s been one of my best season’s so far,” Dobson said.
“We as a team made a commitment to run the Eureka series so I’d like to keep going well and hopefully win it too.
“I came away disappointed from the title in Tasmania. I really wanted to win down in my home state but it wasn’t to be. It’s made me very determined this weekend.”
Dobson will face tough opposition from Brett Milburn who lies in third while Simpson’s John Vogels is edging closer to a win as is Nick Lacey who was also a finalist in Tasmania.
American Geoff Ensign who won the 360ci Victorian sprintcar championship in gutsy fashion at Avalon earlier this year comes into calculations as does former state champion Stephen Bell. Geelong’s Domain Ramsay has returned from a racing stint in the USA and will be joined by fellow neighbours Aaron and Kane Haugh.
Others with strong chances include Liam Williams, James Hennessy, Michael Cunningham, Kris Lacey and Will Carroll while rookies to watch include Luke Walker, Justin Sadler, Eden Sadler, Peter Doukas and Jacob Smith.       
The Formula 500s will again field a strong mix of 36 cars as they do battle in their opening round of the Jettco Series. Many of the regulars from the recent Speedweek Series will be racing including James Aranyosi, Ash and Dale Sinclair, Shane Van Duynhoven, Chris and Dion Bellman, Jye O’Keeffe, Matthew Symons and Tyler Owen.
Public gates open at 3.30pm and racing starts at 7pm.
Adults $25
Child 12-16 $15
Child Under 12 Free
Free Parking and Full Canteen facilities.
For more info contact Jeff Drew 0418 160 985 / Geoff Rounds 0413 024413.