Morse makes a winning return to Modifieds
MULTIPLE Australian champion Tim Morse made a successful return to racing when he took out the V8 Dirt Modified Lord Mayor's Cup at Castrol Edge Lismore Speedway on Saturday night.
Morse led every lap of the main event and was back to his vintage best after eight years away from the V8 Dirt Modified national scene while driving Sprintcars.
The trophy race doubled as the NSW championship after the state title last season was washed out.
Despite a strong effort by the runner-up, Australian titleholder Kevin Britten, Morse was always in command.
Britten made a determined lunge on the final lap but Morse crossed the line 0.64 seconds ahead in an exciting finish.
Andrew Pezzutti was a distant third after a steady drive over the 30 laps of the feature.
Morse has combined with former driver turned car owner Andrew Shilleto of Maryborough, who is the Australian agent for the American TEO V8 Dirt Modified chassis brand out of New Jersey.
Morse's TEO car ran perfectly all night.
"It's great to get a win first-up and everything worked so well in our preparation for tonight,” an elated Morse said at the victory presentation.
"To win the Lord Mayor's Cup and the NSW title is very pleasing in my return to V8 Dirt Modified racing.”
The race ran without major incident despite several yellow light caution periods.
The heats provided the perfect form guide after Morse and Britten emerged the strong runners, though Scott Quirk and Steve Milthorpe also stood out.
Promoter David Lander got the season off to a good start with a large crowd.
The season was officially opened by Lismore deputy mayor Gianpiero Battista.
Other main event winners: Brock Armstrong (four-cylinder sedans), Tony Blanch (AMCA sedans), Jay Waters (street stocks), Nick Chilcott (production sedans), Terry Leerentveldt (mod lites) and Nick Youngberry (junior sedans).
The junior sedan main event provided an exciting last lap after Youngberry passed leader Matt Weir on the final corner.