| Waikaraka - 24/03/07
Watching the midgets race on Friday night was great and for the very first time in over 20 years I can honestly say I enjoyed their races. Why oh why can they not be made to run starter motors is my only gripe. Surely this would not add a great deal of weight to the cars and it would definitely make them more attractive to the average fan who get restless and bored very quickly. Anyway their times where pretty impressive and the top guys where on par with the laptimes of the mods. None of these guys seemed to be prepared to settle for 2nd and all drove hard outů great to watch and in my opinion a welcome addition to the race program.
13 mods fronted on Saturday as a support class to the 2nd night of the Teams Nationals at Waikaraka Park. In attendance for the first time since the Dirt Cup were 1,2 and 3nz. These 3 alone would keep most mod fans happy but when you add in 6a, 56a and the much improved 22r and 99a, then you can be assured of some hard fast racing. This proved to be the case.
Due to the calibre of the cars in attendance it was decided that the normal handicapping griddraws would be unfair so the first two races were a marbledraw and reverse format. The feature race would be structured slightly different to one used before in that the top 6 points scorers after the first two races would start from the rear but in a semi inverted fashion. Top points would leave from grid 8, 2nd points from grid 10, 3rd points from grid 12, 4th points from grid 7, 5th points grid 9 and 6th points from grid 11. This would give the 3 highest points scorers the advantage of outside starts but still mean that all had to work their way past the slower cars in front.
Heat 1 - Grid 3.
With 7a and 25a in front, grid 3 wasn't going to be much of a problem for Foxy. Although the track was still a bit slippery Foxy was able to quickly move into the front and really made no race of it. Scotty, starting behind Foxy on grid 5, moved just as quickly into 2nd but never threatened Foxy. When they were clear of traffic Foxy's times were over ? a second quicker than Scotty's per lap. (this ELS stuff is a great tool in reviewing how you are going!). Coming home 3rd in this race was 56a Paul Blakeley who started from grid 6. The biggest mover in the race was 22r Glen Lloyd who made his way past 1nz Allan Haigh and came home 4th from grid 10. Allan came home 5th from grid 7.
Total order was 3nz (grid 3), 2nz (5), 56a (6), 22r (10), 1nz (7), 29a (4), 6a (9), 99a (8), 7a (1), 86a (13), 18a (11), 25a (2) and 97h (12).
Fastest lap was Foxy on lap 7 (15.4608)
Heat 2 - Grid 12.
The field was down to 12 with the withdrawal for the night of 86a due to mechanical problems.
Glen Lloyd made the most of his start off the front (was actually from the 2nd row but with 86a being a no show and 97h opting to start from the rear he inherited the front) and streaked away for the race win. 99a Nathan Robertson did a good job following him thru and kept it together to come home 2nd. Most interest was further back in the pack with 1nz being harassed by 2nz, who was in turn being hounded by 3nz. Allan looked to be down on pace a bit in this race and was definitely holding both Scotty and Foxy up. Try as they did tho, there was no way past as both Allan and Scotty made sure they used most of the track in their battle.
Finishing order: 22r (grid 3), 99a (5), 6a (6), 1nz (8), 2nz (10), 3nz (12), 56a (7), 29a (9), 18 (4), 7a (13), 25a (11) and 97h (1).
Fastest lap was 22r Glen Lloyd on lap 2 (15.625)
Feature - Grid 10.
Highest pointscorer after the 1st 2 races was Glen Lloyd with 23 points. He was rewarded with a grid 8 start. Foxy and Scotty were tied on 21 points so had a coin toss to decide their starting positions. Foxy won the toss and chose grid 10 leaving Scotty with grid 12. 4th highest points and 2 points further back was 1nz Allan Haigh. He was to leave from grid 7. 6a and 56a where tied on 5th highest points and also had to toss a coin for grids 9 and 11. Brian won the toss and started from grid 9.
At the start Foxy ducked straight out to the wall going thru cemetery bend and coming off the turn he was 3 wide (can't recall seeing this before thru this turn, actually didn't think it was possible). Luckily he made only slight contact with the wall and he headed into turn 3 for the first time still 3 wide and on the outside of 7a and 1nz. The move paid off and heading down to the start/finish line for the 1st time he was in the front. Not a bad effort for the first lap. To be honest we have seen this move on more than one occasion from Foxy so it came as no surprise to us watching from the pits, it did however have a few others scratching their heads as to how he had managed to get away with it. 1nz Allan Haigh was quickly into 2nd and giving chase but Foxy was slowly able to pull away until the first of many yellow lights. The restart order had Foxy in front of Allan and Scotty (who had made good progress from his grid 12 start). At the green Foxy was again able to pull away to a comfortable 4-5 car length lead and this happened time and time again at every resulting restart. The only bit of drama was to come when Allan spun out exiting cemetery bend, gifting Scotty 2nd place. I did not see what happened so am unsure as to the cause of his spun (not sure if it was self inflicted or aided). Foxy ended up coming home nearly ? a lap in front of the rest.
Finishing order: 3nz (grid 10), 2nz (12), 22r (8), 99a (6), 6a (9), 56a (11), 7a (4), 97h (1), 1nz (7), 18a (3), 25a (2) and 29a (5)
Fastest lap was Foxy on lap 3 (15.1931)
All in all a great night for us but best of all no damage to report (apart from another dent in the front of the chassis after a love tap on 2nz in heat 2!). It is great to run with Allan and Scotty in the field as it gives us a better indication of where we sit and, at the moment, we feel pretty comfortable. The next big test for us will be running against 29c Glen Leech down at his home track of Woodford Glen at Easter weekend. Looking at the recent results from down that way there is no doubt he is the man to beat in the South Island and our recent form at the Glen has not been anything to write home about. We hope for a much-improved effort in a fortnight's time.
This weekend we will be taking a break to double, and triple check everything before heading South. This weekend was originally set down as a standdown for the mods at the John Webster memorial meeting at the park, but with this now changing, and mods being added to the weekend's meeting, it is disappointing we can't attend. It is more important we spend the time getting the car ready for the remaining 3 meetings of the season.
See ya at the Glen!