An elusive piece of speedway silverware continues to nag Hawke's Bay's two-time national Super Saloon champion Steve Flynn.
"I've got a couple of national titles but I have yet to win the Burger King-Pro Dirt Series and it's been going for 11 seasons now. The closest I've got is a second," Flynn explained in the countdown to tomorrow night's Meeanee-hosted third round in this summer's series.
"Winning the series is definitely a goal of mine. But it's harder than the nationals where you just have to perform for one night but to win the series you have to be consistent for nine nights," Flynn said.
A speedway racer for 24 seasons, Flynn, 45, is 10 points behind the leader, Mount Maunganui's two-time national champion and 2015-16 season champion, Chris Cowling after the first two rounds in this season's series.
"I've had a pretty good run. I won the first round at Bay Park which is a pretty hard track to race on and finished third in Auckland last weekend. Chris [Cowling] did well to earn some extra passing points in Auckland ... but there are another seven rounds to go," Flynn said.
One of 25 drivers in this season's series and one of five from the Bay, Flynn, said anyone of the 25 had the potential to win a round.
"People say because we're on our home track this weekend we've got a better chance. But everyone has got the same chance so we have to try to get some points. In my case I have to try to be more consistent as in the past I've often started meetings well but fallen away towards the end of the night."
In addition to attempting his first series win this season, Flynn will chase a third national title in Huntly on January 11 and 12.
"Huntly has a new surface and hopefully it is good. It has been rather slick for the last couple of year," Flynn explained.
The question had to be put to the Price Engineering Ltd engineer. If he won the series and a third national title this summer would he retire?
"I've been thinking about it for a few seasons now. I would have to weigh up whether it would be a good time to retire or would it be good to try to equal the record of four national titles," Flynn replied.
The 2012 and '15 national champion, who has used the same V8 Chev engine for 18 years, will be joined by his brother and series organiser Grant Flynn, Chade Rodda, Darren Melling and Mac Kwok as the Bay hopes tomorrow night.
Grant Flynn won the series last summer and was impressed with the standard of racing last weekend.
"We did 30 laps with no yellow flags. Hopefully it is as good this weekend."
He is fourth in the series, 62 points behind his brother. Cowling's brother, Steve Cowling, is 20 points ahead of Grant Flynn in third place.
Chris Cowling won the series in the 2015-16 season. Three-time winner of the series and three-time national champion Mark Osborne of Rotorua and the promising Sam Waddell of Mount Maunganui, are other fancied starters in tomorrow night's field.
Osborne is no stranger to success at Meeanee. He won his third national title in the Bay in 2016.
Osborne won the series during the 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2016-17 seasons. After tomorrow night's meeting the series will continue with rounds in Wellington on November 24, Stratford on December 8, Meeanee again on January 19, Gisborne on January 25, Bay Park on January 26 and Palmerston North on February 3.
Time trials will be staged tomorrow night to determine grid positions for the first of three heats.
A 30-lap feature will end the Super Saloon class' contribution to the meeting.
Other classes running are saloons, streetstocks, sidecars and TQs.
Meanwhile, the return of Jason Long is a feature of the Hawke's Bay Hawkeyes superstock team selected to take on the Wellington Wildcats at Te Marua tomorrow night.
Hawke's Bay Magpies rugby prop Long raced for Gisborne last summer.
Other members of the Hawkeyes team for tomorrow night are Adam Groome, Zach Lawrence, Quintin Butcher and Maddie Wise.