With Bay of Plenty titles in four classes up for grabs at the Rotorua Stockcar Club Memorial Night, highly competitive racing was always expected at Paradise Valley Speedway on Saturday.

The drivers did not disappoint as they battled it out in the Bay of Plenty Stockcar, Superstock, Six Shooter and Production Saloon Championships.

Locals dominated in the Superstock and Stockcar championships, with Rotorua drivers filling the podium in both.

In the Superstocks, Lance Elworth finished first, sixth and second in his three races to finish first overall. Dan Holland was second (5th, 4th, 3rd) and Pat Westbury was third (2nd, 7th, 8th).


In the Stockcars, Keith Spanhake finished third, first and fourth in his three races to take the title. Michael Rumney was second (5th, 3rd, 5th) and Courtney Young was third (2nd, 2nd, 10th).

Tauranga's Cole Wood won the Six Shooter Championship and Huntly driver Wayne Warrender took the Production Saloon Championship.

Paradise Valley Speedway race commentator Paul Hickey said Memorial Night was an opportunity to come together and remember former members.

"We've had lots of members and drivers who have passed and a lot of people wanted to donate trophies in their name and things like that, but because there are so many it's difficult to highlight any one particular person.

Rotorua drivers Dan Holland (left), Lance Elsworth and Pat Westbury filled the podium in the Ebbetts Taupō Bay of Plenty Superstock Championships. Photo / Sportsweb Photography
Rotorua drivers Dan Holland (left), Lance Elsworth and Pat Westbury filled the podium in the Ebbetts Taupō Bay of Plenty Superstock Championships. Photo / Sportsweb Photography

"It was a night where we had a moment's silence, just for everyone there to stop, reflect and remember those who have had an influence on their speedway lives and are no longer with us. Everybody is different, some have only been around speedway for five years and will think of more recent people, while others have been around a long time will remember others.

"It was special and obviously we tied in what happened in Christchurch as well."

Hickey said the racing throughout all the classes was "very competitive".

"Stockcars and Superstocks both had close to 40 entries - over half a dozen tracks from around the country were represented, trying to take the title. Racing always goes up a notch when there's a title on the line.


"Predominantly, locals dominated the starting line-ups. In the Stockcars and Superstocks, because you're allowed to hit intentionally, a couple of out of towners who were up there on points were dealt to in the final heats.

"It was the first ever Bay of Plenty Championships for the Six Shooters too, it's a fairly new class."

The 2018/19 speedway season is beginning to wind up, but Paradise Valley Speedway still has a couple of events to circle on the calendar.

"We've got the Demolition Derby on Saturday, April 6 - that's always a crowd favourite.

"Then there's the Rotorua Easter Championship, on Easter Saturday and Sunday nights, for about 30 years has traditionally been the big finale, not just locally but for drivers all over the country as well. It's always a highlight."

Bay of Plenty Championships Results
1st 77R Lance Elsworth, 2nd 555R Dan Holland, 3rd 65R Pat Westbury.

1st 68R Keith Spanhake, 2nd 72R Michael Rumney, 3rd 96R Courtney Young.

Production Saloon
1st 2NZ Wayne Warrender, 2nd 5R Trent Robertson, 3rd 63H Peter Cradock.

Six Shooter
1st 51M Cole Wood, 2nd 8R Martin Jamieson, 3rd 23R Erryn Cross.