CRG Australia’s newest recruit Tyler Greenbury has already shown he made the right choice in switching over to the iconic Italian marque by racing to victory in the Pro Gearbox KZ2 class at round three of the CIK Stars of Karting Series held at Ipswich in Queensland last weekend.
This latest victory now sees the defending Pro Gearbox KZ2 Champion sitting third in the championship points battle a mere five points behind his fellow CRG team-mate Jason Pringle in second who in turn is only five points away from the lead.
Greenbury began by topping the timesheets, stopping the clock fastest in qualifying but had to settle for the outside front row after the top-five shootout before a solid run through the heats set the effervescent 19 year-old up for a strong showing in the two 25-lap finals.
Final one started perfectly with the Greenbury slotting his CRG into the lead on lap three however after fifteen laps at the front of the field he had to relinquish the top spot to John Grother, going on to cross the finish line in second place to give himself another front row start for final two.
It wasn’t such a solid start in final two with the number one kart dropping back to fourth early before a quick recovery saw Greenbury charge his way back into the lead on lap 12 and from there was never headed going on to greet the chequers almost one and a half seconds ahead of his closest rival.
“I couldn’t be happier with the debut of the CRG kart,” said Greenbury.
“I knew we had to fight hard given the pace that Johnny Grother showed to win the opening final. I knew that I needed to get the lead as soon as possible and then protect it and control the race,” said Greenbury.
The victory was the perfect confidence booster for the young Queenslander who flew out to Italy the following day to compete in this weekend’s WSK Euro Series Round at La Conca.
“It’s pretty cool to be making my debut for a new chassis one week, and then the next week racing on the other side of the world with the factory team,” said Greenbury.
“I’m really excited about the week that lies ahead, but also a little bit nervous at the same time.
“To be racing against the likes of Davide Fore, Marco Ardigo and the many of the world’s best drivers is going to be an amazing experience. I’m looking forward to getting over there and learning from what they do over there so I can better myself.
“By getting the opportunity to race in Italy, courtesy of the prize money from last year’s (Pro Gearbox KZ2) championship and the support of CRG Australia, I’m confident that I’ll come back a better driver.”
The 1250 metre La Conca circuit is regarded as one of the best kart tracks in the world and plays host to many high profile events such as CIK-FIA World and European Championships, of course the WSK series and also hosted the 2008 Rotax MAX World Challenge Final.
“Over the past few weeks I’ve been looking at a heap of videos on You Tube from previous events at La Conca learning not only the track but also studying the gear changes, braking, and different lines,” said Greenbury.
CRG Australia Team Principal Chris Dell is equally excited about the opportunity for his new recruit to race against some of the worlds best and believes it will be great for the advancement of his career.
“I think the opportunity for him to head over to Italy and join forces with an elite team with all the best gear and factory mechanics will be a fantastic opportunity for him. It will be a great chance not only for him to show them what he can do but on the other hand to also learn a lot a the same time,” said Dell.
Back on Australian soil and fellow CRG Pro Gearbox KZ2 driver Jason Pringle is also locked into the dogfight for the championship with his consistency proving to be the key in the points chase.
At round three of the series in Ipswich Pringle was once again never too far away from the pointy end of the field and crossed the line behind his team-mate in third position in final one before having to consolidate in final two bringing it home sixth.
For the Victorian who entered the round third in the championship 27 points off the lead, this solid points haul has positioned him perfectly heading into the final two rounds as he sits second – just five points adrift of the lead. Even more promising for Pringle is that the penultimate round will be held at Eastern Creek where he has shown good form in the past while the series final is in his home state at Port Melbourne.
Like Pringle, his CRG Junior team-mate Jake Coleman is also firmly locked into the championship points battle also sitting second in his class, Pro Junior KF3.
After qualifying on the outside of the front row Coleman also set himself up for a strong run in the two finals however unluckily found himself drop back to seventh late in final one after battling inside the top four. Final two ended stronger with a podium finish in third place.
CRG driver Jedd Stojakovic also left round three of the CIK Stars of Karting series in the lead of the Australian Leopard Challenge in the Light division after also finishing on the podium in third.