South Australian based, but Queensland born, Brock Hallett struggles to give a convincing answer when questioned about which Australian state he calls home, but ask him why he is still win-less in the Carline Speedcar Pro Series and his response rolls right off the tongue.
"We've been good enough to win on about three nights between last season and this one, but I just didn't make the right decisions at the right time," he says, which is a humble call from a racer whose on-track decisions have scored him two Formula 500 Australian Titles and a preliminary feature win at the Clay Cup Nationals in Washington State in the USA earlier this year.
Hallett has consistently showed hints of brilliance both last season and the current championship, highlighted by a runner up spot last Saturday at Speedway City, that he claimed before an abrupt shower on a restart produced a tangle between him and Neville Lance, ending with Hallett's car catapulting high into the turn two fence.
"We definitely had a fast enough car to take a win and if there wasn't any rain, I'm convinced we really had something for Todd. But Trevor phoned me today to say the car is all fixed so we're good to go for Friday and Saturday, because if there was ever a chance for us to capitalise on a home track advantage, it's this weekend with the South Australian double-header at Bordertown and Murray Bridge."
And it's a home track advantage that has produced some significant wins for Hallett, who consulted his trophy collection mid-conversation to confirm the dates.
"I won my first Australian Formula 500 title at Bordertown when I was seventeen and I won the King of the Bridge in 2011 at Murray Bridge, so it's definitely familiar territory. I'd probably class Murray Bridge as my home track since I race there so often, so that may just give us the edge we need," he said.
So, with this weekend's forecast established, surely Brock has had time to consider a politically correct answer to the question of his favourite state?
"I'm a South-Australian-Queenslander," he replies, knowing full well that he's dodged the question once again.
So perhaps we should consult his car owner, Trevor Knuckey, to get some background on the emerging star who flickers between his dual nicknames of "Hollywood" and "Highline" Hallett.
"Well, it's like this," Knuckey begins, as he makes himself comfortable to assist in retelling what he refers to as "Speedway meets Home and Away."
"Regardless of what Hollywood tells you, he was born and raised in Queensland, raced for his folks and a few other owners, but headed to South Australia in search of romance. Now he found it for a while, but after a year or so, it didn't work out, so the reason I call him a South Aussie is because he CHOSE to stay here. He didn't have to, but he likes the racing here more, and the ladies too, obviously!"
Brock pauses to consider his team owner's response, and then approves with a simple, "Yeah that's pretty accurate. Let's go with that."
And it makes sense. The 23 year old has called Adelaide home for five years now, and after landing a dream job with Cates Motorsport working in sales and repairs just north of Adelaide in Roseworthy, he's not looking to relocate anytime soon.
"Yeah, this is the dream job," he says, “because this means I'm hands-on with the industry every day, which is great for my racing, but I get to test the products on the weekend too, which is great for the business."
Hallett goes into this weekend’s double in a strong fourth spot in the championship, as the circus heads to Bordertown's Tolmer Speedway for the first time on Friday night, and returns to Murray Bridge on Saturday.
Check out www.speedcarproseries.com.au for details.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE HERE thanks to SPS