The fire will be in the belly for David Priolo when he contests the WA Sprintcar Championship at Perth Motorplex this Saturday night as part of the Salute the General event.
Despite being one of the form drivers in recent years, Priolo has only claimed the championship once – back in the 2009-10 season – and given he is now in the twilight of his career, another WA title win is on the radar.
To most drivers this Saturday night’s event is much more than just a championship race, it’s a chance to pay tribute to ‘The General’ John Day.
Most famously recognised for the bright orange John Day push utes that start many speedway vehicles before they begin racing, Day gave much to the sport until he passed away in June this year.
Day’s orange utes will take pride of place in the first Salute the General tribute show to be held since his passing.
Priolo, who painted his car in John Day colours as a tribute a few years ago, wants the race win badly.
“John Day is an icon of our sport,” he said.
“What he has done over the 50 plus years and dedicating himself to the sport is unbelievable. To be able to pay tribute to him is something that I would really like to do by winning his event.
“He was a friend of mine and it was very sad when we lost him. I definitely miss chatting to him at the track. I am sure if I got across the line I know he would be looking down on me and it would be a great victory celebration.”
To help commemorate John Day’s life, spectators and competitors are being encouraged to embrace the colour orange by wearing orange to the event or adding special designs to their vehicles.