Shilleto has winning Formula
“HOW YOU going champ?” is a greeting Dale Shilleto has heard said plenty of times.
If you ask him now the answer will be “fantastic”.
The 22-year-old is on top of the world because he’s a state speedway champion for the first time in his on-track career.
A member of the Maryborough Sporting Car Club, Shilleto made sure the long trip to Melbourne was worth it after he raced home to win the 2010 Victorian Formula 500 Championship at Avalon Raceway.
Shilleto, who has been racing in the class for five years, won it in style as well.
The former Aldridge State High School student qualified for the final after three impressive performances in his qualifying heats.
He won one, finished second in another and third in the other.
Those performances ensured he started the 25-lap final from pole position and he carried on from where he had left off in the heats.
Shilleto got out to an early lead and stayed there until he got the chequered flag.
More than 40 drivers from throughout the country contested the championships.
A diesel mechanic by day, it comes as no surprise that Shilleto said he had never felt better.
“It just feels unreal,” he said.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet that I’ve won a state title and I think it will take some time before it finally does – I don’t mind how long it takes because it’s a great feeling.”
Now he has won his first title, Shilleto said he has no plans to ease off the gas in his pursuit of winning more.
“No way – I hope this one is the first of many,” he said.
Shilleto will race in Lismore this weekend before maybe turning his attention to a meeting in Adelaide a week later.
He’s thinking about racing in the South Australian titles.
Fraser Coast speedway fans will next get a chance to see Shilleto in action when he hits the track to contest the Fraser Coast Championships at Maryborough Speedway on February 6.
Maryborough Sporting Car Club general manager Ryan Harris said Shilleto’s performance was a huge result, not only for the driver himself but also for the club.
“Dale’s raced into our history books,” Harris said.
“He’s the first club member to win a state title outside of Queensland.
“His win has proved that our drivers can match it with the best in the business away from home and really puts us on the map.”