THE X Factor Cars Riverside Speedway team were expecting a small crowd at the annual prizegiving at the Invercargill Workingmen’s Club recently, but were pleasantly surprised with the number of drivers, supporters and sponsors who turned up to celebrate a shortened season.
The season was disrupted by Covid-19, meaning several championships were not contested.
The committee decided to scale back the prizegiving in favour of a gold coin donation entry and a simple affair, rather than the usual live band with all the trimmings-type of night club members had become accustomed to.
The club committee thought only a few people would attend but as the evening was getting due to start people kept flowing through the door, leading to a mad scramble to set up more tables for what was the best crowd seen at a prizegiving for many seasons.
Big winners on the night were Darcy Hewitt, who was the winner of the season points for modified sprints.
Hewitt also won the Club Ambassador Award, along with the Sponsor Of The Year which he accepted alongside his wife Kim.
Duane Cracknell claimed the grade awards for good attitude and most improved in six shooters, as well as second overall for season points.
Cracknell also won the high flyer award for a spectacular roll-over early in the season.
Newcomer Kahu Moxham was another standout at the awards night.
In his first season Moxham impressed and looks to be a talent in coming years.
Moxham’s attitude off-track was rewarded by claiming the Sportsmanship Trophy for the grade and the overall award for the most improved driver.
Kathy Crockett got a standing ovation when presented The Member Of The Year Award.
Crockett had been instrumental in many projects around the club and was the driving force behind the new tower/bar/kitchen project.
She was the face of the club with sponsors and the award was well deserved.
Riverside club president Tiffany Dryden was presented a life membership for her services to the Southland Stockcar Drivers Association.
Dryden had been part of the club for almost 20 years and had many roles – lap scorer, grade representative, committee, club secretary and president.
Other winners of special awards on the night were Vernon Helms — Sportsmanship
Trophy Modified Sprints; Finn Cleveland and Jacob McIntyre who shared the hard
charger for six shooters; Stephen Broad — best presented production saloon; Steven
Nicholas — Sportsmanship Trophy for production saloons; Darren Stanton — all round
achievement in youth saloons; Graham Williamson — Corbyn Shuttleworth Speedway Photography Award for Best Presented Car; Tiger Stevens — volunteer of the year;
Phoeynx Stevens — Hard Luck Award; Vaughan Marshall — Clerk Of The Course Award; Harrison Brown — most consistent driver; Callum Crockett — inaugural Caretaker Of The Year Award.