By Trevor Jackson
IT has been a quiet and long off-season for Mount Gambier wingless sprint racer Mitchell Broome.
Broome pulled the covers over his car after the 2019-20 season was cut short due to the covid-19 pandemic and only pulled it out recently for the opening South Australian round at Murray Bridge on the weekend.
Apart from some maintenance and a fresh coat of paint the car has hardly seen the light of day, but that did not stop Broome from hitting the ground running.
He finished fourth in the feature race after a tough opening heat.
On the first lap of the night Broome said he found trouble and was pushed back down the field which put him on the back foot.
“The first heat didn’t go to plan,” he said.
“I was nearly put into the wall on the first lap, which wasn’t a good start.
“I ended up sixth but won the second heat which helped.”
From there Broome started the A Main feature out of sixth place, but track work prior to the race meant few opportunities to pass.
“They ripped the track up right before the final and that made it hard to pass,” he said.
“If they left the track alone we might have been able to move forward a bit more but you can’t change that and everyone has to race on the same stuff.
“I started out of sixth and got a couple of people at the start but it didn’t really change much after that at all.
“It was just hammer down, flat out, turn in on the bottom.
“It was fun and fast, but there was no passing.
“I can’t complain for the first weekend.”
Broome said he was itching to get back in the car after a long off-season.
He said he was pleased with how the weekend panned out.
“The online racing isn’t anywhere near as fun, so getting back in the car was real good,” Broome said.
“The car went back in the trailer straight so that is always a good start.”
During his time out of the sport Broome gave a little TLC to his car in readiness for whatever form of racing might eventuate.
He said with time to spare the car was well prepared for the opening show at Murray Bridge.
“We changed a fair bit in the off-season because we had the time,
“ Broome said.
“We bought some new parts that were starting to get a bit old and probably on the verge of breaking down and we got it all painted up again to make it look nice for the start of the season.
“Other than that it just sat in the shed for the last three months.”
Broome usually races the Victorian Super Series but with that not running this year, the amount of racing for the wingless category is still up in the air.
That includes the Australian and South Australian titles, which were pencilled in for Murray Bridge.
Broome said if the border restrictions are not lifted the Australian title will not go ahead and there is still some doubt about the South Australian championships.
He has three more shows before Christmas at this stage – two in Murray Bridge and one here in Mount Gambier.
Other than that there has been little organised, with border restrictions still weighing heavy on the sport.
That leaves one simple approach for Broome.
“I plan to get as much racing in as I can because we probably won’t be doing much of it,” he said.
“Because there are no series or anything and no money on it, it is just fun.
“Hopefully if the borders open right up we might be able to do a bit more.”
Broome said he would not look to race any other categories at this stage, unless an offer was forthcoming.
“If I get an offer I wouldn’t knock it back,” he said.
“Racing anything is fun.
“It gets to the point where you are sick of sitting home – I have started playing golf, so that is how boring my weekends are getting.”