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Whyalla Open Kart Meeting - June

from Dave Camwell

Whyalla Open Kart Meeting has been run and won - Report from the 2nd of June

What a fantastic way to start the meeting with the 4 Cadets drivers from the age of 7-10 years of age hitting the track first up. Aaron Oliver and Stirling Angus from Adelaide had never raced at the Whyalla circuit before and both drivers have gained valuable tack experience for the upcoming Whyalla City Titles in which these drivers will be attending and will be racing in a field of 10+ drivers.

whyalla go karts june
Above: Cadets class, Amy Redjepi (17) ahead of Aaron Oliver (70), Stirling Angus (55) and Cooper Jones (31)

Amy Redjepi once again travelled up with her father Jeff and Brother Ben. Amy is showing improvement in her driving ability at each race meeting she attends, she only races at the Whyalla track. Local driver Cooper Jones had to work hard on his race craft all afternoon settling for second place in most of the heats and would have claimed second for the day, but unfortunately he lost his nose cone in the final and was black flagged putting him in third position on points, Aaron second and Stirling first.

All 16 Senior drivers with three different classes were next out on the track and what an absolute spectacle, with plenty of action through the first turn, many drivers had this idea that you could win from the first corner at the start of the green light from the back of the field, how wrong were they when 5 of the drivers crashed their way through the field and unfortunately 3 of the drivers were out for the rest of the race, with one kart sustaining a rear axle beyond repair. 

Above: Neil Schmidt leads the Senior pack

The second heat was delayed with the Stewards holding a quick drivers briefing and discussed how all drivers should act at the start of a race as it is in everyone’s best interest to make the first turn in one piece.

The Restricted 125/Clubman Light drivers started at the front of the pack with the Restricted 125/Clubman Heavy next with Sportsman SA following, all ‘P’ plate drivers started at the rear.

New driver Angelo Karoussis running in Clubman Light had a fantastic first meeting, running from the back of the 16 kart field to finish right up the front in all but 1 race and taking out his class for the win, Neil Schmidt would have probably won, but missing the last two races blew his chances and had to settle for second, Aiden Sossa had a consistent day taking out 3rd place.

Above: Seniors racing in reverse track direction, Brian Sampson (36), Darrol Jones (30), Alan Watt (25) and Adam Baker (2)

Next in the field was the Restricted 125/Clubman Heavy. Dave Camwell missed out on a clean sweep with the carnage in the first race caused him to go off the track and momentarily got stuck on the corner kerbing which provided some entertainment for the spectators as he was smoking up the rear tyres and bouncing up and down in his seat to get off the kerb. He made a good recovery to finish second behind Paul Beaty and then finished first in the other 4 races. Paul Beaty claimed second and Adelaide driver Steve Oliver third on points.

Sportsman SA started at the rear of the pack. Local driver Darrol Jones also missed out on a clean sweep with Darrol involve in the first heat carnage, but he managed to win the next 4 races and take out the class win. Brian Sampson had a fantastic run taking out second and Karl Lawson from Adelaide who comes up to Whyalla at every meeting took out 3rd place, he was extremely ecstatic taking home a trophy.

Above: Paul Beaty (13) and Steve Oliver (44) coming onto the front straight

The kids in the Junior National class put on a great display with 6 drivers in the field. Ben Redjepi took out first place on points, it didn’t go all his way though, with Ben being disqualified in the third heat for not carying a compulsory transponder, Ben forgot to grab it from his sister's kart as they share the same transponder. Max Carter from Adelaide tried to match Ben's speed, but he just didn’t have enough in the tank to keep up with Ben. Max also had a brain fade and it was even before he left Adelaide, he managed to forget his race suit, luckily he was able to borrow one from the Kids Cops and Kart program outfit and managed to scrape in a couple of quick practice sessions. Georgina Wilson, Cameron Wilson and Isabella Cumerlato battled all afternoon with Cameron taking out the final step on the podium with a third place.

Above: Seniors enter the back straight corner, Brian Watt smack bang in the middle

Last on the grid was the Senior Handicap race, this is a race that has been brought back to the Whyalla Club after being erased from the program for the last 10 or so years, with the use of the 125 electric start karts and Clubman Karts with clutches it has made this type of racing extremely exciting as the quicker drivers are handicapped around the track and with a standing start make for some interesting racing. The handicapping can be worked out that some karts start as far back as 260 plus metres  and by the end of the 12 laps all karts are within overtaking distance and many drivers cross the line together .

Consistent times is the key, as any mistakes blow your chances of winning, all drivers push real hard to get to the front of the pack before the checker flag drops. Dave Camwell took out the class win, Adelaide driver Steve Oliver claimed second and thought the format was fantastic, Dan Tasenan came in third place. Unfortunately the 5th handicap race was cancelled due to poor light as the sun was disappearing quickly.

After all the racing was over and the trophy presentation completed, the bonfire was lit and the beers were flowing. What a fantastic day of racing, everyone had an absolute ball, many thanks go out to all the Club Members who contributed to the pre-work before the event and to all that made the event run smoothly during the day, a special thanks to Rod and Sue Clee who came up from Adelaide to do stewarding for the Club as a couple of Whyalla people were absent for the meeting.

Above: Amy Redjepi ahead of Aaaron Oliver and Stirling Angus

The Whyalla Club would like to invite all drivers to the annual Whyalla City Titles on the June 30th, July 1st, the Club has secured around $3500.00 in trophies and prizes, organized a jumpy castle for the kids Saturday afternoon and evening, there will differently be a bonfire as well. Three races Saturday of 12 laps anti-clockwise and a pre-final of 15 laps and a final of 20 laps on Sunday in the clockwise direction, all points count and plenty of laps for your money.

If anyone wishes to camp out on Saturday night, it is not a problem, the only thing to remember is there is no mains power as the generator will be turned off  and we do not have showers yet.

For any enquiries please contact:
Dave Camwell
0448 880 762
Whyalla Go Kart Club Publicity Officer 



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