Monday, 6th January, 2014
By Ethan James
Ricky Howse and Adam Commons have returned to sidecar racing in the most spectacular style, winning the Riordan’s Paint and Panel 2014 Sidecar Shootout final last Friday in Mildura.
The pair were sidelined for almost two years following a horror crash in 2012 which resulted in Howse being badly injured.
Remarkably, he still has his femur pinned and has decided to ride again despite the potential disastrous consequences if he were to crash again.
The duo rode the Olympic Park track with every bit of nous that saw them finish as high as second in the Australian Sidecar Championships held at the Newcastle Showgrounds in 2011.
Heading into the final, Howse and Commons were second on the score chart, having only dropped a point in the heat to four-time Victorian Champions Warren Monson and Matt Morgan.
The field was on edge in the final, with a re-start called after the riders bunched heavily going into turn one.
After a blistering start, many punters thought that Howse would be disadvantaged by the recall.
However, his second start was even better than the first as he blasted from the tapes with clear air behind him.
Monson had lifted at the start which allowed Cave to slot into second place, just ahead of German.
Cave maintained his tight lines and good speed for half of the journey, but Monson was always nipping at his heels.
This action had allowed Howse and Commons to streak to a good lead and once Monson got past Cave, he was too far behind to have a major impact on the leading Howse and Commons.
They then crossed the finish line with ease to take the Dudley Bradshaw Memorial Trophy.
Broken Hill riders made up a quarter of the field, with four of the sixteen coming from the Silver City including Howse and Commons, Ricky Howse’s brother Darren and partner Matt Ward along with the duo of Ricky Stephens and Darcy Risstromm.
Daniel Stephens also competed with his son Linc as a passenger.
The next meeting at Olympic Park will be the International Solo Challenge Cup, which will be held on Saturday, January 18.