Article by Speedway Sedans Western Australia
Gary “Dusty” Higgs has survived a torrid forty lap main event at the Make Smoking History Bunbury Speedway to claim his second consecutive victory in the SSA Super Sedan WA State Title.
Higgs defeated Busselton’s Kevin Bell who recorded his best career finish in the WA State Title after having raced the class for over thirty years with Kyle Larson officially third.
The hard luck story of the A Main was third generation pilot Lee Aylett who lead for twenty six laps before spinning to the infield with a flat right rear tyre with just three laps remaining.
Twenty SSA Super Sedans were in the Bunbury pit area for the second State Title for the class to be held in the West in just five months.
Perfect weather conditions for Speedway and a great crowd were on hand to see the SSA Super Sedan WA State Title contested at the venue for the first time in forty years.
Gary Higgs got his title defence off to the best possible start by holding off Lee Aylett in heat one to score maximum points with Damon Trouchet finishing third.
Broome’s Phil Barton claimed heat two after narrowly defeating fellow Broome resident Zac Minshull with Brent Vosbergen recovering from an earlier spin to finish third.
Heat Three was plagued by a number of stoppages as veteran Terry Green hit the wall heavily with Kemble Aylett also losing a wheel on lap six.
Two Time State Champion Warren Minshull’s State Title would be over after heat three as he sustained engine damage to his W7 Dominator as Gary Higgs survived the restarts to defeat Kyle Larson and Kevin Bell.
Damon Trouchet drove the wheels off the Great Southern Logistics W3 Sweet in heat four as he challenged both Phil Barton and Zac Minshull as he lost most of the panels on his car in the process.
Barton managed to drive around the outside of Zac Minshull on the final lap to win his second heat of the night with Trouchet third.
Just seven cars contested heat five with Trouchet again enthralled the crowd as he man handled his car to victory with a brilliant late race move on Kevin Bell.
Barton managed to make it three wins from three starts in the heat race competition holding off Higgs and the unique sounding machine of Tristan Green in the final qualifier of the State Title.
Smoke began to come from the W36 McCorry Brown Earthmoving Dominator of Phil Barton as the final heat concluded with the news coming through shortly after that the top point scorer would not start the A Main.
Fifteen Cars set off on the forty lap journey for the 2020/2021 SSA Super Sedan WA State Title with Higgs and Trouchet occupying the front row.
The duo raced side by side in the early laps with the pair even tangling at one point in turn three.
Lee Aylett moved through the field on the opening circulations to be third by lap five as Higgs spun exiting turn two handing the lead to Trouchet.
Luke O’Hanlon came to grief finding the concrete wall on lap six as Trouchet lead the field away at the restart.
Aylett soon moved his W4 to the highline and momentarily hit the race lead as Trouchet and Higgs tried to fight back.
The outstanding State Title of Damon Trouchet came to an end on lap eleven as he collected the concrete wall exiting turn two which brought about the second last stoppage of the race.
Zac Minshull headed infield during the stoppage with a flat tyre on the W47 entry from Broome leaving just twelve cars for the final twenty nine laps.
Higgs lead the field away with Aylett as expected going to the outside and taking the lead from the defending State Champion.
Before long Aylett was over five seconds in front of the rest of the field as Higgs and Kevin Bell had no answer for one of the youngest Super Sedan competitors in the country.
The longer the race went the further in front Aylett got as he began to lap traffic and was on track to win his maiden state title in SSA Super Sedans.
Aylett lapped the remaining cars in the race right up to fourth place with just three laps remaining.
Drama struck Aylett within sight of the finish with a flat right rear tyre stopping him from tasting victory as the Pro Earth Civil backed entry spun to the infield with the yellow lights coming on once more.
Just nine cars remained for the final three laps with Gary Higgs nursing his W1 RPM Race Products Sweet to victory from Kevin Bell and an elated Kyle Larson rounding out the podium.
Mount Barker’s Rob Knox finished fourth after starting well back in the field as Kemble Aylett came home in fifth place at the end of the forty laps.
Gary “Dusty’ Higgs was extremely content with his second State Title win in succession at the post race celebrations and thanked his crew headed by son Dustin for all their hard work this season which has seen much success.
The 2021/2022 SSA Super Sedan WA State Title will be held at the Make Smoking History Collie Speedway with a date to be confirmed in the weeks ahead.
Official Results of the 2020/2021 SSA Super Sedan WA State Title
Heat One, Ten Laps- 1. WA1 Gary Higgs, 2. W4 Lee Aylett, 3. W3 Damon Trouchet, 4. W5 Kevin Bell, 5. W7 Warren Minshull, 6. W6 Tristan Green, 7. W10 Kyle Larson, 8. W9 Kemble Aylett, 9. W55 Kevin Bell, 10. W96 Steve Larson. Total Time: 3.01.394. Winning Margin: 0.335. Fastest Lap: 17.752 W4 Lee Aylett
Heat Two, Ten Laps- 1. W36 Phil Barton, 2. W47 Zac Minshull, 3. WA4 Brent Vosbergen, 4. WA22 James Westerman, 5. W76 Terry Green, 6. W16 Damo Wallinger, 7. W27 Luke O’Hanlon, 8. W22 Steve Schofield, 9. W13 Andrew Kennedy (9). DNF: W68 Rob Knox (5). Total Time: No Time. Winning Margin: 1.632. Fastest Lap: 17.544 W36 Phil Barton.
Heat Three, Ten Laps- 1. WA1 Gary Higgs, 2. W10 Kyle Larson, 3. W5 Kevin Bell, 4. W55 Nathan Bell, 5. W27 Luke O’Hanlon. DNF: W22 Steve Schofield (9), W9 Kemble Aylett (7), W7 Warren Minshull (6), W76 Terry Green (3). DNS: W13 Andrew Kennedy. Total Time: No Time. Winning Margin: 1.547. Fastest Lap: 17.757 W7 Warren Minshull.
Heat Four, Ten Laps- 1. W36 Phil Barton, 2. W47 Warren Minshull, 3. W3 Damon Trouchet, 4. WA4 Brent Vosbergen, 5. W68 Rob Knox, 6. W6 Tristan Green, 7. WA22 James Westerman, 8. W96 Steve Larson. DNF: W4 Lee Aylett (4). DNS: W16 Damo Wallinger. Total Time: No Time. Winning Margin: 1.255. Fastest Lap: 17.742 W36 Phil Barton.
Heat Five, Ten Laps- 1. W3 Damon Trouchet, 2. W5 Kevin Bell, 3. W10 Kyle Larson, 4. WA22 James Westerman, 5. W9 Kemble Aylett, 6. W55 Nathan Bell, 7. W27 Luke O’Hanlon (7). DNS: W16 Damo Wallinger, W22 Steve Schofield, W47 Zac Minshull. Total Time: 0.206. Fastest Lap: 18.369 W3 Damon Trouchet.
Heat Six, Ten Laps- 1. W36 Phil Barton, 2. WA1 Gary Higgs, 3. W6 Tristan Green, 4. W96 Steve Larson, 5. W13 Andrew Kennedy (9). DNF: W76 Terry Green (2), W68 Rob Knox (2). DNS: W4 Lee Aylett, WA4 Brent Vosbergen, W7 Warren Minshull. Total Time: No Time. Winning Margin: 2.958. Fastest Lap: 18.031 W36 Phil Barton.
The Final Point Score in the 2020/2021 SSA Super Sedan WA State Title
1. W36 Phil Barton 108
2. W1 Gary Higgs 100
3. W3 Damon Trouchet 82
4. W5 Kevin Bell 68
5. W10 Kyle Larson 59
6. W47 Zac Minshull 56
7. W6 Tristan Green 43
8. WA22 James Westerman 42
9. WA4 Brent Vosbergen 40
10. W4 Lee Aylett 33
11. W55 Nathan Bell 32
12. W27 Luke O’Hanlon 29
13. W76 Terry Green 28
14. W9 Kemble Aylett 27
15. W96 Steve Larson 27
16. W68 Rob Knox 25
17. W7 Warren Minshull 19
18. W13 Andrew Kennedy 18
19. W22 Steve Schofield 16
20. W16 Damo Wallinger 10
A Main, 40 Laps- 1. WA1 Gary Higgs, 2. W5 Kevin Bell, 3. W10 Kyle Larson, 4. W68 Rob Knox, 5. W9 Kemble Aylett, 6. W6 Tristan Green (39), 7. WA22 James Westerman (39), 8. W96 Steve Larson (39), 9. W13 Andrew Kennedy (38). DNF: W4 Lee Aylett (37), W22 Steve Schofield (22), W3 Damon Trouchet (11), W55 Nathan Bell (6), W47 Zac Minshull (6), W27 Luke O’Hanlon (6). DNS: WA4 Brent Vosbergen, W7 Warren Minshull, W16 Damo Wallinger, W36 Phil Barton, W76 Terry Green. Total Time: No Time. Winning Margin: 0.768. Fastest Lap: 18.052 WA1 Gary Higgs.
Images by Peter Roebuck.