SMOKE AND CARNAGE ENSUED WHEN THE ULTIMATE BURNOUT CHALLENGE HEADED WEST FOR THE FIRST TIME
AFL Grand Final day may not have been the best time to put on a burnout comp in Western Australia, especially when one of the local teams – the West Coast Eagles – was playing. Fortunately, a lot of people don’t really give a shit about the footy, so they made the trek up to Bindoon Extreme Park to see some of the best guys in the tyre-killing business put on a show.
Bindoon is a little over an hour north of Perth. The last time I was up there was in 1987 for the second Bindoon Rock Festival – I’ve still got the T-shirt to prove it. The place has been tidied up a bit since then, and there sure as hell wasn’t a giant burnout pad and grandstand on the premises all those years back.
The pad is huge, measuring up at 50x50m, and what that lends itself to is some pretty high-speed tip-ins. There’s not much of a chute to get a run-up, so people carry the speed pretty far into the pad, which doesn’t always end well, as in the case of Darcy Ewing in his HJ wagon, KURRUPT. He tipped in and the car did a full 360 before nosing into the wall, crunching the front right guard. He just backed it out and carried on with his skid.
The other thing with such a huge pad is that it can be hard for some of the less powerful N/A cars to fill it with smoke, although the big hitters with their blown methanol combos had no problems in that regard.
Jason Bean did a fantastic job commentating the event. It’s a tough job talking all day and keeping the crowd informed and interested, but he did come out with this classic after Harald Michel’s skid, which saw one of his rods completely exit the engine: “Sounds like it may have dropped a cylinder along the way.”
UBC definitely had a different vibe to the other burnout comps I’d been to recently. Maybe it was something to do with the picturesque surroundings, or the fact they had Johnny Cash playing over the PA. The event brought out many of the west’s top competitors and it was great to see them up against some very strong opposition from the eastern states. When the smoke and red dust settled it was an all-WA podium, with Justen Brown taking the win, closely followed by Fred Watson and Anthony Page.
Hopefully next year they’ll bring the show to Bindoon again – but maybe after the footy season is over to really get the joint jumping. s