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McFadden launches Classic campaign with Premier opener

James McFadden is one of the headling acts in tonight’s season-opening sprintcar event at Premier Speedway.ALLANSFORD’S Premier Speedway is fast becoming Queenslander James McFadden’s home track.
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The dual Australian sprintcar champion sees himself as almost a local. While he works in Brisbane, his father Dave is based in Warrnambool, along with his car.

“I’m there (in Warrnambool) more often than not,” McFadden said yesterday as he prepared to fly from Brisbane to Melbourne.

“Between Brisbane, America and Warrnambool that is my life really.”

McFadden is one of the headline acts in tonight’s season-opening sprintcar event at Premier Speedway.

Like his rivals and race fans, he can’t wait to take to the clay circuit.

McFadden is targeting January’s Lucas Oil Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic — the country’s most prestigious speedway event — and he sees tonight as a significant stepping stone.

“I want to win the Classic — that’s my number one priority,” he said.

Tonight’s participation in the Sprintcar Racing Association of Victoria (SRA) series round will be the first of four lead-up events to the Classic for McFadden.

“Any time you go to race at Warrnambool, everyone jumps at it. It’s the best race track in the country,” he said. “Warrnambool has always been a good track for us. The more I can get on it, the better. The more laps you can do on a track, especially before the Classic, has to help.”

The 25-year-old has spent the opening weeks of the season trialling set-ups with an eye to the bigger races in January. That will continue but he would love another win at Premier Speedway.

He is one of 54 drivers in a bumper field tonight. Mount Gambier’s Steven Lines, a dual Classic champion, says McFadden, reigning Australian champ Dave Murcott and Warrnambool’s Jamie Veal are among the drivers to beat.

Lines, like McFadden, has used his opening races this season to experiment with his car.

This time last season Lines had won seven feature races from nine meetings and was the sport’s hot driver. Tonight he is chasing his second feature race victory of the new season while Veal is the form driver, having won five out of six features he has contested so far.

“We’ve been trying a lot of stuff, which hurts you a bit,” Lines said.

“We’ve got to do it. It’s a bit frustrating but it’s about getting more of an advantage (for the bigger races).

“We won a few more future races (early last season) but we haven’t done that many meetings. We came out last year all guns blazing. We have our runs and someone else will get on a run.

“You want to make sure you have all your ducks in a line when the big shows come to town.”

In sporting terms, the 30-year-old and his Halls Motorsport team don’t want to peak too soon. Lines said more than a dozen drivers had the ability to win tonight.

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This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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