Drivers may have taken to Autobarn Carina International Speedway track by themselves but that didn’t stop the whole family being involved in the opening night.
For Bundaberg’s Bradley Petersen the emotions were running high as he prepared to race again at Carina for the first time in 17 years.
Racing for Bradley is a family affair, as he checks over his XF Falcon surrounded by his wife and children, but they are not the only family on his mind.
Bradley’s late father Pedro Petersen was a star in his own right, as he had great success at Carina in his Holden Torana decades ago.
And Pedro inspires Bradley to give it his best shot as he rips around Carina reaching speeds of 80-90 along the straight in his sedan.
The 39-year-old may have given racing a rest 17 years ago, but he recalls the thrills that were entrenched in him as he sped around the dirt track at Carina as a teenager.
“This is my first weekend back after 17 years – so she’s all new now,” Bradley said.
“Dad use to race back in the day and he won most events out here. We lost him about 24 years ago, and he is always on my mind.
“I am a little bit nervous to get back on the track, but also very excited, I wanted to keep it old school and just get back in the seat.”
Bradley’s love for cars was returned with support from local sponsors including Rum City Exhaust Centre, Petersen Painting, Scotty’s RC, Ian Ward Photography, Coastal Blinds and Bundy Paint Centre.
Big car buff families at Carina opening night
Taking their grandsons Cooper and Jai, along with son Jack and daughter Casey, out to the speedway opening night Maree and Mark Walker were excited to be front and centre of all the action.
The family moved from Alice Spring four years ago and Maree said they would often go along to the historic Carina speedway as their family were “big car buffs”.
“We haven’t been out much since COVID-19, so I think this is really great and it’s the perfect family event that doesn’t cost too much,” Maree said.
“We love anything to do with cars really, and we look forward to the opening night tonight.”
Kingaroy mum Chantelle Small and her sons Bailey and Harlen, enjoyed checking out the selection of monster trucks, but they went along to the opening night to watch the boy’s grandfather race.
“My dad, David Barbeler, races the street stocks,” Chantelle said.
“So, we’ve come along to watch poppy race. It’s been lovely here in Bundaberg and we often come here and always enjoy it.”
- Earlier report: Carina International Speedway on track for season opener