TAKE ME ON: V8 Dirt Modified driver Gary Tomkins from the United States will be racing against some of the best local talent at the Lismore Speedway tonight.
TAKE ME ON: V8 Dirt Modified driver Gary Tomkins from the United States will be racing against some of the best local talent at the Lismore Speedway tonight. CATHY ADAMS

Flagging one tough race

AMERICAN V8 Dirt Modified ace Gary Tomkins is quietly confident of success when he competes at Lismore Speedway tonight.

However, he is the first to admit his task will not be easy. Tomkins has great respect for the strong local and interstate line-up, headed by Lismore’s former national champion Mark Robinson.

“These guys are tough to beat around the tight Lismore circuit, so I am not getting too carried away with my chances of winning,” Tomkins said yesterday.

“I have tremendous respect for these guys and they are good racers.”

Tomkins says the layout of the Lismore circuit is a little smaller than many of the tracks he runs in
America, but running short-tracks is what he built his career around, so he will be able to adapt to the Lismore bull ring.

As an indication of how seriously Tomkins is treating his one-off appearance at Lismore Speedway this weekend, he will drive the same car he used in his 2007 American campaign.

The car is now owned by Toowoomba business Ray Klarich who has stripped and completely rebuilt the machine in preparation for Tomkins’ cameo two-fixture Australian east coast campaign.

In addition to his appearance at the Lismore venue, Tomkins also will compete at Toowoomba’s Charlton Raceway.

Klarich, a racer himself, knows what Tomkins wants out of his car and he has gone to painstaking lengths to give him an ultra-competitive machine.

“I’ve sat out a few races so the car is in great shape for Gary when he gets here. I’m looking forward to it, the other drivers are looking forward to it and the fans who come and see Gary race in Lismore and
Toowoomba won’t be disappointed,” Klarich explained.

Tomkins has over 20 years racing experience on the professional American circuit and is a highly experience driver.

After enduring 17 years of short-track competition he registered his first major dirt car (V8 Dirt Modified) US Championship in 2004 while he also has enjoyed significant success on the Central New York state circuits.

Standing 12th on the all-time Series win list, Tomkins has recorded six of his 17 Series victories at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park, with Hagerstown (Md) Speedway and New York’s Canandaigua Speedway also prominent in his results.

Meanwhile Speedcars, Modified Productions, Street Stocks, Four Cylinder Sedans and Junior Sedans also will be featured on the big variety programme.


'ICON GONE': Ballina pub shuts its doors for good

premium_icon 'ICON GONE': Ballina pub shuts its doors for good

Owners say the decision was made with "a heavy heart”

Will house prices drop on the Northern Rivers?

premium_icon Will house prices drop on the Northern Rivers?

As property prices decline in cities, we look at the local market

LIST: Trading hours for businesses on Lismore Cup day

LIST: Trading hours for businesses on Lismore Cup day

What's open and what's closed for the half day public holiday

Local Partners