Donny Schatz (5x WoO Champion) & Sammy Swindell (289 Feature wins), the best
in the business of professional Sprintcar racing in USA join Jonathan Allard
to compete against the Kiwi's at Western Springs International Series over 2
Night one starting mid-pack in both heats Daniel quickly worked his way
through the field, finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively. This exceptional
effort saw Eggleton in 2nd position for the 'pole shuffle' a one on one two
lap battle for the top ten cars, where 10th could effectively work their way
up to position one for the 30 lap main event.
Current 2NZ Dean Brindle (qualifying 3rd) would challenge Daniel for his 2nd
placing, but Daniel held off to win, next facing off against Jonathan
[Allard] for pole. Eggleton got an excellent start comfortably putting the
Vernon & Vazey / ENZED Sprintcar across the line 1st. This meant Daniel is
also able to choose whether to start on the inside or outside of the front
"The pole shuffles were a lot of fun, it's great to be starting off the
front row against such a high calibre of drivers but Jonathan is still one
to look out for come feature time. We'll give it our best."
Feature time and Daniel got out to an early lead before being passed by
Allard, midway through the race Allard spun gifting the lead back to
Eggleton before Sammy [Swindell] got under Daniel as he slipped wide. It
would then become a race between Swindell and Eggleton, until 5 laps to go
lapped traffic ended an outstanding run with contact made shredding the
right rear tyre of the Vernon & Vazey / ENZED, 3NZ Sprintcar.
"Words don't really describe how gutted I am, we were essentially clear of
the lapped car but somehow they didn't see us and made contact. It's
unfortunate for our sponsors and team who did a great job all night,
definitely a character building experience and we'll be out there to try
again next week [Round 2]" - Daniel.
Night two of the International Sprintcars was a similar story; Daniel did
well in his first heat but failed to move forward as much as hoped in his
second qualifying 7th for the pole shuffle. And then the fans were treated
to a specular show of one on one battles with Daniel advancing to 4th
position before being beaten ex NZ Champion, Rodney Wood.
"Last week [Round 1] was disheartening for me, we went well in the heats
considering a difficult to pass track at the time. It's so important to
start near the front of the features, more so with the Americans here if
we're to get on the podium so I was definitely on a mission!" - Daniel.
From grid 4 in the feature, this time 35 laps on a very dry and hard track.
Daniel made his move into 3rd, next in line was Jonathan Allard with Donny
Schatz in the lead. The top 3 were evenly matched, Daniel running up very
high just inches from the wall where the track had more grip while Schatz
and Allard were on the bottom, slower but less distance. Daniel was starting
to pull in Allard with the high line working well until suddenly the right
rear tyre punched nearly sending the car into the wall before retiring to
"I thought last week was bad enough, but to find we had run over a piece of
nerf bar embedded in the track from a previous crash, I couldn't believe it.
We've actually been lucky not to roll with right rear failures so that's a
bonus" - Daniel.
The Vernon & Vazey / ENZED team has shown exceptional improvement over the
years, despite Daniel's lack of seat time compared with USA professionals
including many of the local Kiwi's he is performing extremely well currently
leading the Western Springs Championship Series.