Legends take on the rest

By Tyler Maher

Racing fans will cram into Undera Park speedway like sardines in a tin next week for one of the biggest events the track has seen.

A pair of local legends in Andrew Cleave and Dave Power are the headline act and reason for the jam-packed night of action, with the event a testimonial to the contribution the pair has made to local — and national — sidecar racing.

The lure of racing alongside and against the duo has been too much to ignore for a number of other veterans, while the current and next generations will also be showcased in a meeting which is set to take place across seven hours.

‘‘We’ll have 16 of the best riders in the country right now and 16 who started when Cleave started, a lot of them haven’t raced for 30 years,’’ track curator Alan Jones said.

‘‘All of these riders are giving up their time to come out and show appreciation for (Cleave and Power’s) work over the years.

‘‘Their names have been a massive drawcard.

‘‘We’ll also have one of the best junior meetings as well, with the standard probably even higher than the Australian championships.’’

With so much to fit into one event, fans are encouraged to get down to the track early next Saturday in order to secure prime position to catch all of the action.

‘‘We’ve got nearly 60 races to get through, so it’s about two-and-a-half meetings in one,’’ Jones said.

‘‘We’ll start it at 3.30pm and go through to about 10pm, so even if people can just catch a few hours they’ll see plenty of racing.’’

Cleave and Power were recognised in last year’s inaugural intake of the Greater Shepparton Sports Hall of Fame among the 27 initial inductees.

The duo were the first to claim two Australian Grand Slam titles, while they also snared eight state titles and 14 placings in Australian titles.