Outlaw Team Spitwater made their public debut in the Australian V8 Superboats over the weekend, in front of more than 10,000 screaming fans as part of the Keith Diesel & Dirt Derby in regional South Australia.
The mastermind of local farmer Glen Simpson, the event was developed to provide some growth for the struggling Keith agricultural show and from slow beginnings, the event grew to attract more than 7000 people in 2016, the 2017 event – thanks in part to the Spitwater V8 Superboats – attracting a staggering 10,000 plus people!
For Justin Roylance and his team, the event became their first real opportunity to debut their all-new Outlaw Team Spitwater package, which had been developed by two young V8 Superboat talents from JRE Race Engines, and from opening practice the new team showed just how competitive they’d be.
“We had a few challenges first up,” Roylance laughed. “The most notable was finding that a liner we’d put in the nozzle of our jet unit actually created a big problem for us, which forced us into a literal flat spin in Friday afternoon’s first practice.
“We resolved that very quickly, and from there – apart from a few navigational issues on my behalf – we had a flawless run.
“Our aim for the weekend was to put the boat back on the trailer every run, and we achieved that. I think that once I get more comfortable and confident in the boat – I believe we’re capable of regular podiums, it feels that good.”
Despite qualifying sixth fastest, Roylance missed the cut for the second final after an electrical gremlin put paid to their chances of making the podium.
“It was a good run too, but just as we got going, the dashboard lit up with an alarm which took my focus off navigation, and despite Peter Hodge’s best efforts to point me down the right path, that momentary loss of focus to work out what the alarm was about finished us off. It was frustrating, but we’d always expected there would be some teething issues with the new package, and you can test all you like, but the best test is on the water racing, so we’ll take away what we learnt and come back at Griffith in three weeks looking for a podium.”
Like Keith, Griffith is arguably the toughest V8 Superboat challenge of the year. A popular annual Easter event that regularly attracts crowds of more than 5000 fans, the day/night event has seen a number of Superboat casualties over the years, with many a hull forced into retirement after an off on the unforgiving red clay circuit.
For Roylance though, it’s just another challenge, and a challenge the whole Outlaw Team Spitwater operation is willing to take.
“We had a great time at Keith and are moire than ready for Griffith. I can’t thank Bree [Roylance], Peter [Hodge], Brad [James] and Daniel James enough, but the whole crew were behind us 100% so thanks to all of them for their tireless efforts to keep us running and in the fight – I hope we can reward them with some silverware in Griffith.”
Outlaw Team Spitwater are proudly supported by Spitwater, Penrite, Roylance’s Automotive and Industrial Centre, SP Tools, Signs You See, Forbes Smash Repairs and JRE.