One of the longest-running, continuous sporting events in the history of World Sport.
The BURNIE GIFT
Coup for carnivals as Clark returns
December 15, 2014
Danny Clark in action at the Latrobe Carnival in 2003.
WHAT started as a trip back to Tasmania to present some trophies has now turned into a major coup for organisers of the Fulton Hogan Christmas Carnival series.
Danny Clark, a winner of all four major wheelraces in the state and five-time world champion, will return to the scene of some of his most famous victories by competing at Launceston, Latrobe and Burnie.
He was originally coming to Tasmania to present trophies at the 30th anniversary of the Launceston Carnival, and asked if a spot in the field would be available.
Clark, 63, is forever enshrined in carnival folklore after the 1977 Burnie Wheel, when he came from the clouds to take the second of his three titles at West Park.
Now living on the Gold Coast, Clark still races regularly and only last week competed in a 16-kilometre madison with Ben Price, son of former competitor Craig Price.
However, any thoughts of some sort of miracle win at the carnivals was quickly dismissed by Tasmania's greatest ever track cyclist, who said he is out here on a "racing holiday" and feels he has been harshly treated by the handicapper.
"I'm off 130 metres in a 2000m race and 190m in a 3000m race which is pretty harsh for a 63-year-old, but that's the way it is," Clark said yesterday.
"I think the riders around me and just behind me will be a bit too quick for me.
"I'm racing the best I have in 10 years on the road, but the speed they go on the track now is a lot different to what it was. I was off 75m 10 years ago."
Clark said the victory in Burnie and the carnivals in general still hold some of the fondest memories of his outstanding career.
"The carnivals have been my life," he said.
"The Tasmanian people have been great to me along with the clubs and it's nice to come back and soak up the atmosphere."