This event, running in forms since 2012, has seen twenty one feature races held across that time. Interestingly (for American fans) and sadly (for Australian supporters!) of those twenty one feature events, Americans have claimed every single victory while an Australian has never found their way to the front of the field.
More to the fact, only four drivers have actually ever claimed the victory, two of which claimed their firsts last year. ‘The Kentucky Colonel’ Steve Francis leads the field with fifteen of those wins while fellow American Tyler Erb has three, Jeremy Payne has two and Jason Fitzgerald has one.
With only Erb in this year’s field, will he be the one to add more wins to his tally or will we see a new winners name added to that list, and even more so, will the American domination continue or will an Australian finally break through to grab that elusive win?
Adding to this, we have had four preliminary features, once again with all four going the way of Francis, such was his dominance in the Michael Holmes owned Barry Wright Racecars #91.
Looking at podium finishes and there are fifteen drivers that have garnered a top three finish across those twenty one races, with Francis obviously leading with fifteen. American Devin Moran and Australian Craig Vosbergen are next best with six appearances a piece. Erb, Jeep Van Wormer, Payne and Brad Blake have each had four podium appearances while brothers Jamie and Warren Oldfield have also scored three podium finishes each, as has Paul Stubber.
Kye Blight and Jason Fitzgerald have two apiece, while George Lee, Doug Drown, Ben Ludlow, Matt Goodlad, Ross Nicastri, Steve Casebolt and Ryan Fenech have one each.
If we delve even further, we can see that across the Invasion Tour history there have been a total of one hundred and twenty six heat races held, with wins shared by thirty one different drivers.
Again, Francis leads the stats with no less than thirty heat race wins, followed by Craig Vosbergen on twelve, Devin Moran on ten, Paul Stubber on eight, Jamie Oldfield and Kye Blight on seven, Jay Cardy on six, Joe Godsey on five and Steve Shaver four heats, Doug Drown, Jason Fitzgerald, Brad Blake and Jeep Van Wormer on three heats and Ryan Fenech, Tyler Erb, Jason Oldfield, Lee Watt and Steve Casebolt on two. Another fifteen drivers have claimed one win.
So, now with the 2019 version just about on us, the question remains, will the winners list stay at four or will there be a fifth person to add their name to the winners list? Will the American domination continue or will an Australian finally breakthrough for that first win?
The Di Candilo Steel City USA vs WA Invasion Tour kicks off with the two night Late Model Nationals at the Perth Motorplex on Wednesday the 9th of January and Saturday the 12th of January, followed by round three at the Make Smoking History Collie Speedway the Friday after (18th of January), with the final round at the Make Smoking History Bunbury Speedway the following night, Saturday the 19th of January.
The Sims Metal Management Late Model Pro Dirt Series and Di Candilo Steel City Invasion Tour, proudly bought to you by Global XLI, Boyes Mechanical, Cardy Racing Components, Dirt Track Nutters, Pancho’s Mexican Restaurants, APM Roofing, CTM Recruitment, RACIN, Collie Machine Shop, Grays Online, Mac Track, Rockingham Towing, Baldivis Pharmacy, Mezzstor, Palice Property Group, Michael Holmes Racing, West Coast Big Bike Hire, Our Car Autos, Homes by Roth, Dirt on Dirt, QB Metal Recyclers and Bulk Metal Recycling.
Release by DTN Media.
Photos Courtesy Peter Roebuck.