Sports reports: Jack McCarthy, Brendan Zadow set the pace at Murray Bridge Speedway
Plus the latest from Murray Bridge's golf club, rifle club and lawn tennis association.
This post includes contributions from MMS Media, Murray Bridge Golf Club, Murray Bridge Rifle Club’s Daniel Irvine and Murray Bridge Lawn Tennis Association’s Graham Buttle.
Jack McCarthy has ended up in front of the wingless sprint A-main on the third night of the Murray Bridge Speedway season.
After being sent to the rear of the field for the start of his opening heat for a second start on Saturday night, McCarthy put it all behind him.
Other winners on the night included Brendan Zadow, who dominated round two of the state Formula 500 series, Nigel Reichstein in the street stocks and Nick Hall in the V6 sprints.
The second club show of the season included seven racing categories, with some great racing throughout the night in front of a respectable crowd.
The wingless sprints were the feature event, with 29 drivers in the field for six heats, a B-main and a 20-lap finale.
Going into the final the heat winners were Matthew Kennedy, Mitchell Broome, Tyson Martin, Rylan Furler, Rhys Heinrich and Ryan Alexander.
After the heats, Mount Gambier’s Broome sat on the pole for the final for the second time in as many events, with Alexander, Furler, Martin, Heinrich and McCarthy completing the first three rows.
In a caution-littered finale, McCarthy survived a great battle for the lead to edge out Alexander and opening-night winner Kirby Hillyer, who started from position eight.
Heinrich was impressive - he finished fourth - while Broome completed the top five.
Furler was unlucky to run sixth, while William Caruso, Darryl Sloan, Nicole Southby and Sharni Pitcher completed the finishers.
Michael Spoljaric, Ross Miller, Sharni Pitcher and Nicole Southby were the four drivers who transferred into the final via the B-main.
In the formula 500s, Zadow led all 15 laps of the final as he defeated Whyalla’s Angelo Karoussis, Corey Jones, Ben Cooper and Richard Schmidt.
Earlier, the heat winners were Karoussis and Zadow, with Zadow setting a new eight-lap track record of 1:35.436.
The V6 sprints made an impression during their season debut with nine cars fronting up for plenty of thrills and spills.
Rookie Jordan Grillet started his open speedway career on a low note as he rolled in heat one, but he was joined in the upside-down club by veteran Damian Eve in heat two.
Nick Hall ended the night undefeated with Eve, Renee Pfeiler, Kym Simon and Chris Quinton recording top-five results in the main event.
The street stocks were out in force again, but the same names were up front again with Reichstein winning the 20-lap finale.
The race was split into two segments of 10 laps in each direction.
Second place went to last-start winner Carey Weston ahead of Phil Watson, Craig Buchanan and Keith Moore, who passed Michael Brown late.
The heat winners were Reichstein, Watson and Drew Flatman, who recorded his first win as a senior driver after graduating from the junior sedans.
The remaining sedan categories, unfortunately, only attracted small fields, with Paul Blenkiron winning a great battle over Kym Jury in the 15-lap super sedan final.
Mitchell Rigney and Neville Nitschke completed the field.
In the modified sedans Bronte Perkins emerged as the winner over Tony Hardy and Robert Uren; while Henry Brumfield got the win in the junior sedans over Lachlan Brown, who charged back to the runner-up spot after being sent to the rear of the field for contact with Ky McEwin.
The next meeting at the Murray Bridge Speedway will be another all-sections event on November 6, before sprintcar actions returns for Ultimate Pink Night on November 13.
Thoman senior wins par competition
It wouldn’t be a men’s competition day at Murray Bridge Golf Club without a Thoman bobbing up somewhere, doing something pretty handy on course.
So it was again in Saturday’s par event, where Rodney reminded son Jared that he was still around the place and playing some solid golf by winning the day with a four-up.
Blessed with an easy-on-the-eye swing and a caressing of the ball rather than a bludgeoning of it, Rodney should have a few more days of note yet before the handicapper catches up with him this summer.
As is often the case on par days, one needed to virtually beat one’s handicap to get onto the winners list, as the further-forward-than-normal tee blocks gave players more opportunity than usual to be putting for wins.
Tony Carter, back for another one of his two-week-off-work stints, put it together with a nice three-up back nine, leaving him with that score and a clear win in A grade.
Craig Hogben, back down into a single-figure handicap again, wasn’t bothered by it and ended up with a nice one-up to be the runner-up.
Staring at big trouble, being in the trees for two shots on the last hole, Hogben was faced with a sandy lie and a maze of trees between him and the green.
No problem - he casually creamed a flat four-iron low around all of the trees and up toward the green, although perhaps hit a bit too well as the ball appeared bunker-bound.
Knowing that a playing partner’s ball was on the grass at the front of the green, he had factored in a cannon off of it to deviate his ball away from the bunker and up onto the green to safety.
You know you’re having a good day when that plan comes off.
Shaun Williams has struck a bit of a purple patch recently; he maintained the rage with a strong two-up and B grade victory.
Club vice president Michael Perrey is back playing comp golf once more now that football is finished, and he wasted no time in finding his feet by grabbing the runner’s-up spot here with a handy one-up.
In the C grade Andrew Massie, from Echunga Golf Club, had a round he won’t forget in a hurry.
Turning at the halfway mark in a bit of trouble, at four-down, he conjured up an astonishing back nine of seven-up, including consecutive wins on the last six holes.
Wow - that is amazing golf.
Has that ever been done before?
He finished his round at three-up and needed a countback which - surprise, surprise - he won to relegate Bill Fisher to the runner’s-up spot.
Ball winners were Jeff Smith and Lameroo Golf Club visitor Dave Christie, with excellent two-ups, followed by Dan “the Man” Hocking, Neil Paech, Captain Morgan and Echunga two-handicapper Nathan Separovich, who each tallied rounds of one-up.
Mitch Lienert, “Dog” Rothe and Tom Haig brought up the tail with square rounds, but good enough to claim a prize.
The exotic competitions were shared around a bit, with the up-and-down Tyson Wright, putting his card in for a change, successful with the yabby on the short par three fourth hole.
Hocking was back on song with a tidy back nine of four-up to win the pro comp, though he was no doubt disappointed to hear that Massie had failed to part with a dollar for entry - not.
It was no surprise to see club champ Jared Thoman clear out the eagle’s nest yet again when he eagled the par five eighth hole, and probably with relative ease, too.
It will be time for a good ol’ Stableford round this Saturday.
Conlon nears perfection at rifle club competition
It seemed a perfect day for shooting on Saturday.
Overcast conditions made for good sighting, and the breeze, albeit a little cool, was blowing steadily from the right – or, at least, that was what the flags appeared to indicate.
Yet when shooters began the 11th round of the Murray Bridge Rifle Club championship from 600 metres, they found things were not quite what they seemed.
Subtle variations that were not really seen in the flags were enough to push bullseyes out to fours, or worse.
Several shooters scrambled for spotting scopes to keep a close eye on the mirage.
Such assistance wasn’t required for Adrian Conlon, however, who dominated with a 59.05 and a near-perfect possible of 60.08 in his second round.
His 119.13 was the top off-rifle score in F-open, seven points clear of John Cranwell in second place.
Conlon’s high centre count also helped him finish on top in the handicap award, again seven points clear of second-placed Peter Byass in F-standard.
Byass’ efforts were not enough to claim the top prize in F-standard, however, as Dave Hindmarsh navigated the conditions to find himself with a second-round score of 59.02 and a total of 112.03.
In target rifle, Greg Traeger was too mean to miss, keeping all four sighters for a win in the snipers’ award, but was not able to translate that to the final results.
His 96.04 gave him third, behind his daughter Jasamine by five centres, and the top TR shooter for the day, Rob Paech, on 98.10.
Paech’s shoot included another impressive score and near-perfect possible of 50.07 in his second round.
He did admit to being fortunate enough to have gotten the “Greg Traeger” weather during the round, although that title might have to change if he keeps up his good form.
Jazz’s solid score and high centre count were enough to secure her the handicap win for the class.
Members were happy to welcome back Daniel Irvine, who kept up club morale by once more winning the Magpie Award after loosing a stray one in an unnoticed drop-off.
A new member to the club, returning to the sport after a considerable time away, Rikki Ryan, made another appearance and shot a much improved second round.
This week members will shoot the 12th round of the club championship from 800 metres.
Juniors, come and learn to play tennis
The Murray Bridge Lawn Tennis Association’s junior coaching sessions will begin this Saturday morning under the leadership of David Schulz.
Any budding tennis players aged five years and above will be most welcome.
Schulz’s coaching motto is “making the game of tennis fun”.
He will be available at the Sturt Reserve courts from 8am to provide any required information relating to coaching.
Swanport (five sets, 48 games) defeated Sportsman (three sets, 42 games)
Postel (six sets, 45 games) defeated Schools (two sets, 23 games)
Twin Bridges (seven sets, 57 games) defeated Swanport (two sets, 35 games); player of match: Barry Griffith
Mobilong (seven sets, 56 games) defeated River Aces (two sets, 42 games); player of the match: Lorraine Graetz
Swanport (nine sets, 66 games) defeated Schools (six sets, 61 games)
Avoca (nine sets, 68 games) defeated Murraylands (six sets, 54 games)
Sportsmen (11 sets, 75 games) defeated Coorong (four sets, 51 games)
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