Rocker racing on for young and old at Autospectacular

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Sunday April 10 at Willowbank Raceway will now not only host the all-new Queensland Autospectacular, but also pint-sized novelty action courtesy of the Australian Rocker Cover Nationals which will form part of the event.

Rocker Cover Racing, which involves competing with racers made from Rocker Covers (also known as Tappet or Valve covers) has become very popular in the USA and England and is now taking an increasingly popular role in Australia, attracting enthusiasts from all age brackets.

Jake (right) and his little brother Lincoln (left) are looking forward to heading to the Queensland Autospectacular at Willowbank Raceway on April 10
Jake Clarke of Woodend is one youngster looking forward to the event, which encourages competitors to create either a ‘speed’, ‘tribute’ or ‘wild thing’ racer from a standard rocker cover.

The eight year old has already built his racer and modelled it on the Mack truck that his grandfather drove in the eighties. Not all racers are this elaborate and Jake is thinking strategically, with a back up machine based on an early Holden tappet cover ready in reserve should the Mack fail to perform.

“I like to win,” said Jake.

“Hopefully I can beat everyone including the adults at the Nationals! It should be fun!”

A purpose built four lane all aluminium track constructed by Alex Nissan from Nissan’s Welding at Yamanto is nearing completion with final adjustments to the elaborate starting mechanism all but ready for the next stage of development.

Electronics giant Honeywell Limited has provided the smarts for the track and within microsecond accuracy will be able to select the winners on the day.

Trophies will be awarded for a range of winners including fastest ladies’, children’s and mens’ machines, best tribute racer and best Wild Thing racer. More information on Rocker Cover Racing and how you can get involved in the competition is available at

The Shannons Queensland Autospectacular has attracted considerable support from the community and the event will return that support with donations to local charities including the Mayor Flood Relief Appeal. Special fund raising club activities to be held on the day will also benefit the community.

“It’s never too late to join in the race!” according to organiser John Forster who has been a rocker cover racer for a number of years having been hooked while President of the Ipswich Veteran and Vintage Vehicle Club back in 2005.

“We anticipate a good turn out of racers on the day and they will provide a real contrast to the motorised cars and bikes that will be on show on the day.”

With a huge swap meet also being held at Willowbank on the day, fans may just be able to pick up a tappet cover cheaply and get ready to commence their new racing career with a difference.

A wide variety of racers can be crafted from the Rocker (Tappet) covers
The Shannons Queensland Autospectacular will come to Willowbank Raceway in April of 2011 courtesy of a partnership between the Buick Car Club of Australia (Qld.) and Willowbank Raceway, and will feature a display of over 1,000 show and display cars, utes and bikes, club displays, trade sites, a car sales corral, kids amusements, timed test n tune quarter-mile drags, a wheel changing competiton, picnic area and free public parking, plus a VIP car park. General admission tickets are just $10 with children 14 and under gaining free entry.

The Buick Car Club initiated and was responsible for the highly successful Cleveland Autospectacular for the previous ten years. The all-new Queensland Autospectacular event will take place at Willowbank Raceway on the 10th of April, 2011.

With the closure of the Cleveland Autospectacular through urban and other pressures the Buick Club saw this as the perfect opportunity to team with the Willowbank management team to create an all new show for 2011.

Along with the new name and venue will come a number of other new features, including the chance for show car entrants, traders and sponsors to test their cars on the Ipswich drag strip during the event in a Test ‘n’ Tune scenario.

The first SHANNONS Queensland Autospectacular will take place at Willowbank Raceway on the 10th April 2011, two weeks after the Australian Top Fuel Championships – featuring racing from the ANDRA Pro Series brackets of Top Fuel, Top Bike and Pro Stock Bike – take to the track over March 25 and 26.

Willowbank Raceway is Queensland’s premier drag racing facility and hosts four major drag racing events each year – the two-round New Year Series in January, the Australian Top Fuel Championships in March and the Castrol EDGE Winternationals in June. The Queen’s Birthday event is the largest drag racing event outside of the US and is the season finale for the ANDRA Pro Series calendar.

For more information on the Queensland Autospectacular please visit or


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