General

A father’s plea for safety at the track

The father of a man who died during a crash at Barbagallo Raceway in 2009 has renewed his calls for the State Government to pay for a saftety upgrade in the wake of Daniel Chadbund’s death at the same circuit on the weekend.

Scott Elliott’s 24-year-old son Cameron died in 2009 when his motocyle slammed into a solid tyre barrier.

Mr Elliott started a petition about 18 months ago on Change.org in which he asked the State Government to remove the barrier.

Scott Elliott with a photo of his son, Cameron. Photo: Sheridan New.

Scott Elliott with a photo of his son, Cameron. Photo: Sheridan New.

Chadbund, 28, also crashed his motorcyle into a tyre barrier on Saturday.

Mr Elliott said he had always known his son’s death would not be the last.

“It’s a very simple problem to fix,” he said

“The circuit is unsafe for motorcycles. After my son was killed, I thought, ‘this has got to stop’.”

Ducati Owners Club WA president Peter Newbey said upgrades should be made to the whole track.

“The safety barriers and systems are old fashioned and out-of-date,” he said.

“These track users can be doing anywhere between 120 and 180km/h. When someone falls off a bike they don’t stop, they slide with momentum.

“If the barrier was something cushiony or inflatable they may walk away with a broken arm or leg, but they’d get to walk away.”

Western Independent sought comment from Barbagallo Raceway, but was advised to contact Motorcycling Western Australia chief executive Rick Gill.

Mr Gill could not be contacted for comment.

When we asked questions of raceway general manager John Clark in May last year, he said the circuit had already received several upgrades.

“There has been considerable track safety upgrades over the last several years, with increases in length of run-off sand traps at the highest speed corners,” he said.

He also said new track edging had been organised in consultation with motorcycle user groups.

“This new edge surface allows participants who run off the circuit to maintain control and slow down in a safe manner,” he said.

As with any sport, there is an element of risk. With this in mind, continual improvement, whether it be safety or general facility improvements, is what we strive for, to allow all users a safer, more enjoyable venue to participate on.”

Chadbund, 28, crashed while riding in the State Road Racing Championships. He was taken to Royal Perth Hospital but could not be revived.

Chadbund’s wife Hayley has declined to speak to the media, but said her husband was taken too soon.

“Daniel was truly loved by all that crossed his path and epitomised the meaning of a loving husband, son, brother, uncle and true mate,” she said.

The WA Sporting Car Club released a statement after Mr Chadbund’s death, which said: “WASCC are saddened to learn of the passing of one of their competitors at the recent MCRC state round. Our thoughts and prayers go to his family, loved ones, other competitors and officials.”