Speedway documentary Thunder and Dust makes Sapphire Coast screen debut

Bega Valley film makers Andrew Moore and Fiona Scott are pleased to announce that their documentary, Thunder and Dust – a year with Sapphire Speedway, will be shown at the Picture Show Man Cinema in Merimbula on June 18 at 7.30pm.

This screening will cap off a five-year project of researching, interviewing and filming to produce a 90-minute story of a dedicated community group that strives to keep their 45-year club afloat while dealing with natural disasters, regulations, insurances and lack of money. 

“When I first got involved with Sapphire Speedway as race secretary, I never dreamed that I would end up making a documentary about the club,” said Mr Moore, director of Thunder and Dust. 

“But the more I learned about the history, the setbacks and the superhuman efforts the members put in each and every meeting, the more I felt the story needed to be told.”

The more I learned about the history...the more I felt the story needed to be told.

Director Andrew Moore

Producer Fiona Scott said there were once over 700 speedways in Australia.  Today there are fewer than 90. 

Land rezoning, finances and the increasing burden of compliance have seen many tracks close since their heyday in the 1970s.

For Ms Scott it was important that people knew about their local speedways, how they started and why it is important to keep the smaller rural-based grass roots tracks in operation.

Mr Moore and Ms Scott interviewed past presidents, NSW and Australian champions, drivers who build cars and spectators, and sources newspaper articles, old photos and videos to round out their story.

Thunder and Dust features an original soundtrack featuring music by Mr Moore and Canberra and local musicians such as Pete Wild and Melanie Horsnell.

“Thunder and Dust is a story about community, about volunteers and about people who put their passions into action.” Mr Moore said.

“It’s not just about cars driving round and round a track.  It is about the people who make it happen and the trials they face to keep their club going.”

The documentary screens for the Australian National University Film Society this Friday.Then on June 18, the Merimbula screening will be held as a fundraiser for Sapphire Speedway and tickets are available at the Picture Show Man.