Alice Springs news
Alice Springs news; NewspaperNT
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Community newspspers; Australia, Central; Alice Springs (N.T.); Newspapers
v. 17 issue 23
Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.
friend took Steves place as a passenger for the first couple of months due to Steves work commitments but by the end of the 87 speedway season, Steve and Brian were working well together. They had a fairly tight partnership on the bike and at the end of 1989 they won the title of Centralian Champions by achieving the highest points score for the season. In 1992, the Jennings/Walsh combination decided to call it a day. By now they had raced together for a total of six years, won a few trophies, been through four different outfits and several motors, and travelled to various speedway tracks. Brian had decided to retire from racing and leave town. Steve on the other hand, was enjoying the dirt and the dust and the fumes too much to walk away. He soon replaced the outfit with an LJ Torana and with a lot of help and support from Bruce Longe as his mentor, went super sedan racing. Although the Torana was the only six cyclinder amongst the big V-8s, he still managed to give them a run for their money. So much so, that a season after he first began, he became the Centralian Champion in this field as well. This car became fairly popular with the kids, due to having Daffy Duck painted on its quarter panels, rear and bonnet as a bit of a fun thing. Because of this Steve was given the nickname of Daffy which he still carries today. Throughout these years, Steve and I both did a lot of other behind-the-scenes work at Arunga Park. We both served on the committee for a number of consecutive years he for nine, and I for 11 along with many other duties. As well as racing, Steve spent several seasons driving the water truck or the grader, doing the track preparation with Jim Lydeker. In the meantime, I was helping out with the Speedway Riders canteen and working in the tower as the Lap Scorer. At times, it was extremely frustrating and difficult for him to finish the track prep in time to get home, get showered and get back to the track in time to race. Somewhere in the middle of all this, I recall being just as bewildered as his own mother had been, when we did a count of vehicles in the yard. The grand total consisted of 13 which included two trailers, a super sedan, a sidecar frame, two motorbikes, two work vehicles, our two childrens cars and our everyday car plus a spare motor or two. It had become time for a stocktake to move most of it on, which was surprisingly carried out with relative ease! In 1997 our life took another direction and we decided to go into business for ourselves. We agreed that speedway would have to go on the back-burner for a while due to work commitments but unfortunately once Steve gave up, he never got back out there. We sold the super sedan and life went on, although we still had a Kawasaki GPZ1100 and took great pleasure in fanging it out to Glen Helen or up to Aileron every now and then! In late 2001 we sold the GPZ and by the start of 2002 we were looking for another bike to get out and about on during our free time. I will never forget the day Steve came home and informed me that hed just bought a new bike for us I was ecstatic until he uttered the words Harley-Davidson!! I couldnt believe my ears and he couldnt believe his either when I had a few (unprintable) words to say! One of my brothers is also a biker and I have memories of his mates and their Harleys in the 70s as being extremely unreliable. Nevertheless, Steve won me over and our love affair with Harleys developed over a very short period of time. His new pride and joy was a 1981 H-D Sturgis, which are relatively rare to come by (so I was told). We joined the local Harley Owners Group and took part in many enjoyable events. By 2004, Steve was getting restless again and wanted an update. Our daughter was getting married in April of that year, so he decided that hed wait until a couple of months after the wedding. Not so! About four days after the big event, Steve saw an ad in the paper, we took a look, and he rode it home a few days after that. We did a lot of talking over the next few weeks about whether to give the Sturgis up, and finally decided to sell it to its current owner Jon Mason, who has kept it in town. This was done rather reluctantly, because after all, Steve had now realized his life-long dream a nice car and two Harleys in the driveway! He had become, and still is, the proud owner of a 2000 Nightrain. Along with many rides weve been involved with, this bike also took us down to Nuriootpa in 2007 for a National
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