Hunter rider Jason Doyle claimed the Australian Solo Speedway title in emphatic fashion winning his five heats and the A-final at Kurri Kurri Speedway on Saturday night.
Novacastrian Doyle secured the championship with his second heat win of the night and joins Todd Wiltshire, who won the title in 1999 and 2001, as only the second Hunter rider to hold the national crown.
Doyle was joined on the podium by fellow Novacastrian Sam Masters (second) and Pelaw Main's Rohan Tungate (third) in a Hunter trifecta in the final round.
He said the win, in front of family and friends at his home track, helped erase the heartache of last year's final lap loss in the Australian title to world champion Chris Holder.
"It's an honour to join Todd Wiltshire and all the other legends on the trophy list," Doyle said.
"Being born and bred in Newcastle it means a lot to be able to come to Kurri Kurri and win the title at home.
"I had a restless sleep last night. A lot of different scenarios were going through my head after losing on the last lap at Gillman (South Australia)."
The Australian title has capped off a big year for Doyle, who topped a successful UK and European season by qualifying for the 2015 World Grand Prix series and a shot at the world champion's title.
“I trained really hard in Europe. It’s a long season, but I think being injury free after nine months helped me when I cam back to Australia,” Doyle said.
“The last two years I’ve had injuries with a broken neck then shoulder operations.
“It’s nice to have one above Chris [Holder, former world and Australian champion] and hopefully that will spur me on for the world cup.”
Masters' second placing allowed hip to leapfrog Victorians Justin Sedgmen and Max Fricke to finish runner-up in the four-leg Australian championship series.
Sedgmen and Fricke finished third and fourth respectively, with Tungate finishing fifth.
"It's awesome knowing how hard Doyly has worked to see him have this success," Masters said.
"I'm stoked to get second after disappointing results in the the first two meetings.
"To finish like that is fantastic. Hopefully it gets me grabbing a wildcard for the grand prix."
Tungate was pleased for his fellow Hunter mates, but admitted he felt the disappointment of a disastrous second round in the championships at Mildura when he was excluded from two races and fell too far behind in the points table to be able to mount a serious challenge for a top three finish in the title.
Tomorrow in the Mercury: Tungate’s and Masters’ European plans.