Tight Finish To TIMC Enduro

Full results from the meeting on mylaps.com HERE

AKA press release

It is quite common for the winning margin in a kart race to be less than a second and yesterday’s TIMC Charity Karting Enduro in Melbourne was no exception.

However, the big difference about yesterday’s race, won by Melbourne’s Lee Mitchener and Tasmanian Zane Wyatt, was that it was contested over a 4 1/2 hour period. At the end of it all, a mere 0.070 seconds separated Wyatt and the second place finisher (Mitch Cuzens) was all that separated them after an amazing 280 laps around the one-kilometre circuit.

kart enduro melbourne
Above: Zane Wyatt crossing the line for victory ahead of Mitch Cuzens
pic: photowagon.com.au/Carruthers

Entering the event the Mitchener/Wyatt pairing were considered strong contenders aboard their Leopard-powered Arrow kart against the likes of the more favoured teams including Kel Treseder/David Sera (Rotax/Arrow), Matthew Wall/Shane Price (Rotax/Arrow) and veterans Remo Luciani and Shayne Piper.

Young guns Adam Lindstrom and Travis Kodric (Rotax/Arrow) upstaged their more fancied rivals in qualifying to start the journey from pole position. Second fastest, and clear pace setter in the Masters division, was Luciani who was powered by the new IAME X-30 engine on his Monaco kart.

After 1983 Bathurst 1000 winner John Harvey gave the drivers the 'start your engines' order, Luciani took the lead on the first lap but it wasn’t long before youngster Josh DeMaio powered his way to the front of the pack to lead the way ahead of David Sera and Zeke Edwards (who was paired with Cuzens).

Above: John Harvey orders the drivers to "Start your engines"
pic: photowagon.com.au/Carruthers

At half race distance the four ‘big names’ had already packed up and were forced to watch from the sidelines. For the second year in a row Sera and Treseder had their campaign end due to a mechanical failure (lap 106) and when Wall broke a chain on lap 129, which resulted in it being lodged in the radiator of his Rotax engine, he and Price were out.

Just as it looked likely that the ‘old boys’ of Luciani and Piper would be in a position to fight for the outright win, Piper and Adam Lindstrom had an argument over a piece of road while battling for third place resulting in both karts spearing off. After some lengthy repairs in the pit area both teams were able to return to the circuit, albeit several laps down on the leaders.

Above: Shayne Piper started the race in the #20 Remo Racing X30 machine, the duo still able to win the Masters division despite losing time in an accident
pic: photowagon.com.au/Carruthers

With an hour remaining the Smith brothers (Joel and Grant) had worked their way into second spot and the Adam Macrow/Steve Scoble entry was also looking strong.

When Daniel Richert stopped with an hour remaining due to an engine issue the safety was deployed for the ninth, and final time. It was under this safety car period when Macrow’s day ended early due to an electrical issue.

After being separated by five lapped karts on the restart Wyatt was on the charge and passed Cuzens under brakes with 25 minutes remaining for the race lead.

Over the remaining period the pair ran in close proximity to each other as Cuzens looked for a way past but to no avail, with Wyatt taking the win by less than a kart-length. Adam Willison and James Sera were the quiet achievers of the day to finish in third spot aboard their IAME X-30 powered Azzurro.

Above: Adam Willison pilots the Azzurro he shared with James Sera to third place.
pic: photowagon.com.au/Carruthers

“Today was just a amazing day, undoubtedly one of the most challenging races that I’ve competed in,” said Wyatt.

“In the end I was doing everything possible to hang on, I wasn’t going to give in easily as we’d battled too hard for four hours to throw it away in the last part of the race.

“To complete 30 laps around here in a race is a pretty physical deal but when you do around 140 laps in a day it really tests you. In saying that though, I’m really looking forward to next year’s event already.

“I’d like to thank Lee and all of his crew for giving me the opportunity to come over to the ‘big smoke’ and race.”

Luciani and Piper claimed the win in the Masters division by finishing eighth outright.

The defending winners of the Masters section, Steve Smythe/Mark Wicks, finished second (11th outright) aboard their Rotax-powered Arrow kart. It was the third consecutive year that the pairing have finished inside the top two in the Masters category.

The Nicolaou family cleaned up in the support events with Leigh Nicolaou taking out the 30-lap Clubman feature and Jordan Nicolaou claiming the win after a last lap pass on Brad Jenner in the one-hour Junior National Enduro.

Plans are already underway for next year’s event, to be held on Saturday December 11, 2010.


Race Results - Top Ten
1. #91 Lee Mitchener/Zane Wyatt - 280 laps
2. #58 Zeke Edwards/Mitchell Cuzens
3. #94 James Sera/Adam Willison
4. #56 Dean Foster/Brock Green - 279
5. #10 Paul Rodgers/Josh de Maio - 278
6. #37 Dylan Collet/Kayne Hughes - 276
7. #99 Grant Smith/Joel Smith
8. #20 Remo Luciani/Shane Piper *masters
9. #33 Rick Pringle/Ryan Sanderson
10. #14 Leigh Nicalou/Fergus Symes - 275


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