A passion for the Morawa Speedway
For Shirley Katona, car racing is both a passion and a family affair. As president of the Morawa Speedway Club, she’s put her heart and soul into the club – even saving it from closing some years ago.
Morawa, a small farming town 370 kilometres from Perth, has one of the state’s best speedway track surfaces. Spectators and competitors from all over Western Australia pour into the town at weekends to experience car racing at its best.
It’s an accredited Grade One track which is permitted to run all classes of cars.
Morawa Speedway a place for the community
Locals describe Shirley and her husband, Peter, as the backbone of the speedway in the district. They race along with their 20-year-old son, Peter, who started as a 10-year-old junior. Shirley races a Ford Cortina production sedan. Her husband and son both race a Ford Falcon production sedan – all often competing in the same division.
Shirley says that she loves the atmosphere and adrenaline that comes from racing. But also its social interaction side.
“You meet so many friendly people who associate with the speedway. It’s good for the locals to get the outside community in.”
Morawa Speedway Club recently won a $1,000 prize for completing its Good Sports Level 2 accreditation. Now, it is currently adopting smoking, safe transport and alcohol management policies. These will support the club’s family-friendly environment.
The prize money will be put towards a safety initiative at the club.
The club has a small dedicated group of volunteers who focus on fostering an inclusive, safe and healthy environment for its participants, members and spectators.
Good Sports program an excellent guide
Shirley said that the Good Sports program is an excellent guide for ensuring that sporting clubs have everything in place, and nothing has been missed out.
“Speedway clubs are the perfect place to foster healthy attitudes and behaviours towards alcohol. And we have a lot of junior speedway participants coming through who are our future. Good Sports gets the word out there that we are doing the right thing.”
Shirley gave a big tick to Melissa Evans from the Good Sports team for helping the club out.
“Melissa acted quickly and provided all the information that we needed. We really appreciated her help.”
With speedway events cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Morawa community looks forward to the day when it is safe for racing to return.