Everyone likes to win something and karters are no different, hence the 100+ fields for rounds of this year’s CRC Speedshow Top Half Series which concluded at KartSport Mt Wellington’s Windward Properties Raceway in Auckland on Sunday,
What started as a simple interclub competition aimed at encouraging karters to expand their horizons beyond their local track has blossomed into a ‘must-do’ series for karters from Taupo in the south to Whangarei in the north, with some travelling from even further afield because of the quality of the competition….and the prize pool.
This year, series coordinator Roger Smith says that the total exceeded $23,000 and next year he reckons it will be over $30,000.
Some of that is in prize money, and cash prizes, the rest in product from the likes of CRC, MG Tyres, Arai helmets, Headcase Designs and Lightning Race Gear.
There are also – of course – trophies and spot prizes.
Rain at the KartSport Mt Wellington club’s Windward Properties Raceway hardly dampened enthusiasm at the final round either, with exciting racing across all classes.
It was particularly close in the 125cc Rotax Max light class with eventual series title holder Rhys Tinney from Hamilton winning the round with one heat win, three seconds and a third.
Host club member Keith Wilkinson also won a heat on his way to securing second place in the class and fourth overall, but was no match for Tinney in the consistency stakes. Corey Green from the Bay of Plenty ended up second for the series, after finishing the day at Mt Wellington fourth behind Hamilton club member Andy Schofield.
In the other Senior classes, local ace Caleb Hartley sealed series victory in 125cc Roatx Max Heavy with another round win, this time over Darren Walker from the Bay of Plenty and KartSport Rotorua clubmates Ashton Baird and Rohan Knowles.
Hartley won three of the five heats and claimed a second and a third in the others.
ClubSport 120 round and series winner Stephen Muggeridge won two of his five heats to lead home Eastern Bay of Plenty clubmate Cliff Walsh and Dean Oliver from Whangarei on the day and Oliver and his KartSport Whangarei clubmates Steve Carter and Richard Macey overall.
In Formula Junior series winner Alex Newlove finished second to fellow Bay of Plenty ace Adam Bell in the round placings while third in the round standings was enough for top female driver Rianna O’Meara-Hunt from Wellington to retain second in the series pecking order.
Series class winner Fynn Osborne from Hamilton also ended up second for the round in his class, Vortex Mini ROK, albeit by a margin of just the one point behind KartSport Auckland member Ryan Crombie.
Crombie and Osborne were very much a double act, meanwhile, in the Vortex Mini ROK class, Crombie winning three of the heat races, Osborne the other two.
Osborne family honour was upheld in Cadet ROK, however, as Fynn’s younger brother Clay won the round and claimed overall series honours with three wins a second and a third over Mt Wellington club member Liam Sceats (who was one of two other heat winners) and Ryan Hancock from Hamilton.
The Mt Wellington round also hosted a class for the now superceded Cadet Raket karts who by Ayrton Williams from Declyn Goffin and Hayden Bakkerus.
In the hotly contested clubs’ ranking KartSport Whangarei came out on top. Sam Waddell was named the most improved senior, Adam Bell the most improved junior. Both are from the Bay of Plenty.
More information on this year’s CRC Speedshow Top Half series can be found on KartSport New Zealand’s website www.kartsport.org.nz/events/2015-top-half-series and Facebook page www.facebook.com/TopHalfSeries
125cc Rotax Max Light
1. Rhys Tinney (Ham) 245 points; 2. Keith Wilkinson (MtW) 234; 3. Andy Schofield (Ham) 233; 4. Corey Green (BoP) 230; 5. Taylor Harte 229; 6. Sam Waddell 227
1. Rhys Tinney (Ham) 1107 points; 2. Corey Green (BoP) 1082; 3. Samuel Carpenter (MtW) 1061; 4. Keith Wilkinson (MtW) 1046; 5. Danjela Haigh (MtW) 1038; 6. Sam Waddell (BoP) 1029
125cc Rotax Max Heavy
1. Caleb Hartley (Ak) 247 points; 2. Darren Walker (BoP) 242; 3. Ashton Baird (Rot) 242; 4. Rohan Knowles (Rot) 238;
1. Caleb Hartley (Ak) 1131 points; 2. Darren Walker (BoP) 1118; 3. Ashton Baird (Rot) 1083; 4. Rohan Knowles (Rot) 1077; 5. Mike Grimshaw (Ham) 545; 6. Darren Aislabie (Rot) 486
1. Stephen Muggeridge (EBoP) 241 points; 2. Cliff Walsh (EBoP) 238; 3. Dean Oliver (Wr) 237; 4. Richard Macey (Wr) 236; 5. Steve Carter (Wr) 235; 6. Brendon White (Wr) 227
1. Steve Muggeridge (EBoP) 1129 points; 2. Dean Oliver 1115; 3. Steve Carter (Wr) 1102; 4. Richard Macey (Wr) 1095; 5. Brendon White (Wr) 1075; 6. Cliff Walsh (EBoP) 1073
1. Adam Bell (BoP) 237 points; 2. Alex Newlove 233; 3. Rianna O’Meara-Hunt (Wgtn) 232; 4. 27 Ashton Grant (MtW) 232; 5. Dylan Smith (Ak) 231; 6. 60 Taylor Hurst (Ak) 224
1. Alex Newlove (BoP) 1100 points; 2. Rianna O’Meara-Hunt (Wgtn) 1080; 3. Dylan Halberg (MtW) 1068; 4. Ashton Grant (MtW) 1056; 5. Cameron Hoskins (Tok) 1055; 6. Dylan Smith (Ak) 1053.
Vortex Mini ROK
1. Ryan Crombie (Ak) 244; 2. Fynn Osborne (Ham) 243; 3. Blake Austin (BoP0 236; 4. Louis Redshaw (Man) 234; 5. Josh Richmond (MtW) 226; 6. Brock Gilchrist (MtW) 226.
1. Fynn Osborne (Ham) 1122; 2. Louis Redshaw (Man) 1086; 3. Ryan Crombie (Ak) 1083; 4. Blake Austin (BoP) 1072; 5. Brock Gilchrist (MtW) 1056; 6. Michael Frazer (MtW) 1037.
1. Clay Osborne (Ham) 247 points; 2. Liam Sceats (MtW) 241; 3. Ryan Hancock (Ham) 234; 4. Ryan Bell (BoP) 228; 5. Kaden Probst (Wr) 226; 6. Mason Potter (MtW) 223.
1. Clay Osborne (Ham) 1127 points; 2. Liam Sceats (MtW) 1112; 3. Ryan Hancock (Ham) 1072; 4. Kaden Probst (Wr) 1069; 5. Mason Potter (MtW) 1055; 6. Luke Thompson (MtW) 1050.