Right on, Rico!
CALIFORNIAN driver Rico Abreu was a decisive winner in the final round of the World Midget Speedcar Championship at Castrol Edge Lismore Speedway on Saturday night.
Abreu was followed to the chequered flag in the 40-lap fourth round main event by West Australian Dayne Kingshott, with Oklahoma's Brady Bacon third.
Kingshott had an entertaining battle with Bacon for the minor placings. He trailed Bacon in the early laps before moving into second position in the second half of the race.
Abreu dominated after the washed-out third round from Thursday night was rescheduled as the first race on Saturday.
The Californian won that event from Bacon and the strong-running Kingshott.
Abreu clinched the championship thanks to his domination of the Lismore rounds and his win in the second round at Archerfield Speedway in Brisbane the previous weekend.
With 108 points overall he finished 12 points clear of world championship runner-up Bacon, while Queensland's consistent Brock Dean took third in the final standings on 78 points.
Abreu was delighted with the title win.
"This is awesome,” he said after receiving the trophy on Saturday night.
"I love racing these cars and it's great to come to Australia and race here.”
A disappointed Bacon admitted on the podium that "we just did not have the car at the end”.
"We were just fading and we still have some work to do,” he said.
Kingshott said his good run at the meeting was because "we put a good car together.”
Abreu set the scene for a big night when he was the fastest in time trials, clocking a lap of 13.425 seconds.
He then dominated the heats and the pole shuffle event which determined the feature race starting positions.
Abreu led the early laps of the fourth round main event before being overtaken by Bacon.
However, Abreu's Keith Kunz owned Toyota- powered team car worked the high line effectively and he gained ground on Bacon as the race unfolded.
Abreu made an outside pass in the bottom corner and regained the lead with 24 laps remaining.
The first 30 laps were run non-stop before the only yellow light caution period.
Abreu pulled away at the restart and over the remaining 10 laps he raced to the chequered flag clear of a fast-finishing Kingshott with Bacon 30 metres behind in third.
The four heats were shared between Abreu and Bacon, each with two heat wins.
Other main event winners were on Saturday night were Luke Gray (Street Stocks), Niki Youngberry (Junior Sedans), Brock Armstrong (National Four Cylinder Sedans), Matt Hardy (AMCA Sedans), Ryan Green (Production Sedans) and David Eggins (Wingless Sprintcars).