The Motorsport Australia NSW Hill Climb Championship heads to the Mountain View Motorsport Complex for the fifth round of the 2021 season this weekend with 41 competitors locked in.
This is the first time the championship heads to Grafton since 2019 and the event will proudly host the state’s best hill climbers race on the track’s brand new surface for the first time.
The Grafton Sporting Car Club has been working overtime in the past few weeks to get the complex ready for its biggest round of the year, after recent storms in NSW caused significant damage.
However with a number of successful working bees, the track is now good to go and event secretary Kerry Anne Merry was eager to get started.
“Everything is looking good. The working bees have been successful and I am proud of all of the volunteers who helped fix the road to get everything looking spick and span – it’s been a real team effort,” Merry said.
“Last year we managed to get our full club season in, but missed out on the state round, so it’s wonderful to have everyone back here. It's great for the town and great for the club.
“We’re also really excited to show off our brand new surface and we’re excited to see what the best drivers in the state can do on it.”
While the surface itself is one of the more appealing factors behind this event, there is no doubt that the major drawcard is the battle between two of the country’s biggest names in Dean Amos and Dean Tighe.
The two drivers headline the impressive field of entrants and sit right next to each other on top of the standings after four rounds.
Although Amos enjoyed a fruitful start to the season with a three-round winning streak, Tighe currently occupies top spot after a dramatic victory last month in Kempsey that saw Amos hit a tree and finish 14th.
Despite Amos having a slight mental edge over Tighe at the moment, the Queenslander remains hopeful of overturning things ahead of the Motorsport Australia Hill Climb Championship later this year as he continues to show progress in his new car.
“I am feeling good for this weekend. My car is far lighter than Dean’s and on a smaller track like Grafton, I certainly feel like it is better suited,” Tighe said.
“I have been within grasp of Dean countless of times and I feel that outside of a slight error I made on my fastest lap in Queensland, I could have gone sub 46. The new car is getting quicker and I feel it.
“I really enjoy the rivalry that we have. It adds just that little bit of extra spice to each round. Yes he has the edge over me now, but it’s close and there have been multiple times over the past few years that he has had to win on his final run.
“It’s important that I beat him this weekend. Not only because I lead the State Championship, but because I want to have the mental edge over him for the national championship.
“Outside of that, I really enjoy running the NSW Championship. They go to some fantastic tracks at great little towns. I think it’s fantastic that we can support these clubs and towns.”
A total of 59 competitors will be competing on the weekend with the remaining 18 part of a multi club event with each driver to get between four and five runs.
Spectators can enter Saturday’s practice session free of charge, while tickets for Sunday’s action start from $15 per adult.
The fifth round of the Motorsport Australia Hill Climb Championship takes place at Mountain View Motorsport Complex in Grafton on 12–13 June.