Mud series ready to get dirty after long wait

Thursday 15 October, 2020
Photos: Top End Mud Association
For the 22nd consecutive year this weekend, the Top End Mud Association will get its highly popular mud series underway after what has been a longer than usual off season.
 
Each year, the seven round season begins in October and wraps up in April, but with the club having been unable to run April’s season finale as a result of COVID-19, it has left participants with an even bigger desire to get the season going.
 
Throughout the event, the full field of 30 drivers spread across four classes will get four rounds of racing before the top performing drivers progress to the final where they will battle against each other for top honours.
 
It’s an event which has long been considered as one of the most popular within the state, with celebrities often making special guest appearances and getting amongst the thick of the action – the most notable being English cricketing superstar Andrew Flintoff, while homegrown talents such as Bryce Fullwood have also taken part.
 

In normal circumstances, more than 1000 fans attend each event with the exciting nature of the cars driving in mud often being the major drawcard to families, however as a result of the series being considered as a major event by the NT Government, it has meant that there will be no spectators for the season opener.

Despite the lack of crowd for this weekend’s round, Club President Peter Donovan was still looking forward to the return of the series and was excited to finally get it underway.
 
“We’re excited but a bit stressed at the same time because it’s been a big job to organise this event,” Donovan said.
 
“It will be very different this weekend, there is no doubt about that, though everyone is looking forward to going racing again, especially since we were unable to run our NT titles
 
“We are one of the only sports in the NT, aside from Supercars, who consistently get more than 1000 spectators, so we are deemed as a major event which ups the ante In terms of compliance that we need to get through, but hopefully we can get it right and the fans will be back next month.
 
"I think the biggest thing we will miss is the image of all the kids running up and down the fence getting splattered with mud and chasing lollies.
 
“It’s also a bit of shame because we don’t have some of our regulars here as they are in South Australia, but we still have a lot of the big names, including crowd favourite Ted Roddick, Simon Modra who has been racing for 15 years and founding member Eddie Tattingham, who we welcome back after a long absence.
 
“We’re just really looking forward to getting this up and running and I will be quite relieved when we finally get to the day.”
 
Fans can keep up to date with the action through the club’s Facebook page where they will be uploading races and results throughout the day.
 

The Top End Mud Association’s Mud Series opener takes place at Downes Park on 17 October.

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