|20 October 2016|
KARTSPORT ISLAND TITLES UP FOR GRABS THIS WEEKEND
It's KartSport New Zealand North and South Island Sprint Kart Championships title time again with events in Hastings and Christchurch over Labour Weekend.
The Tremains KartSport New Zealand North Island Sprint title meeting is being run by the KartSport Hawke's Bay club at its Chemz Raceway at Roys Hill near Hastings and the South Island Sprint meeting in being hosted by KartSport Canterbury at Christchurch's Carrs Rd Raceway.
Above: North Island contender Jackson Rooney (pic - Fast Company//Graham Hughes)
Both meetings have attracted strong entries with over 80 across six classes for the North Island meeting and over 50 across six classes for the South Island one.
Each meeting will be run over three days from Friday to Sunday with practice and qualifying for all classes on Friday and racing on Saturday and Sunday at the North Island meeting and practice on Friday and both qualifying and racing for each class being contested on Saturday and Sunday at the South Island one.
Key interest at the North Island event will be in the classes with the biggest entries, Vortex Mini ROK with 24, and Junior Rotax with 23.
The recent Blossom meeting at the Hawke's Bay track has provided a good form guide for the thriving Junior classes. Jackson Rooney from Palmerston North was the big winner in Vortex Mini ROK with local driver Riley Spargo second and Auckland ace Louis Redshaw, while in Junior Rotax one of the country's best emerging female karting talents, Rianna O'Meara-Hunt, from Wellington won Junior Rotax from Aucklanders Callum Hedge and Joshua Parkinson.
Above: North Island contender Rianna O'Meara-Hunt (pic - Fast Company//Graham Hughes)
With their local club and track hosting the North Island title meeting it is also a chance for young second-generation drivers Ronan Murphy and Zac Stichbury to take a shot at a title.
Ronan is the son of four-time Bathurst 1000 winner Greg Murphy and Zac the son of former New Zealand TranZam and V8 Touring Car champion, the late Ashley Stichbury. Ronan and Zac are both entered in the Junior Rotax class and Zac is also one of a number of drivers contesting more than one class at the event, in his case Junior Yamaha as well as Junior Rotax.
Vortex Mini ROK and Junior Rotax are also the two classes with the most entries at the South Island championships meeting.
The Canterbury club's recent Garden City Championship meeting at Carrs Rd also provides a handy form guide for the South Island title meeting.
Defending South Island title holder Louis Sharp was again the top finisher in the Cadet ROK class, in this case from Dunedin drivers James Black and Jaxon Harvey, while Jacob Douglas claimed the Garden City title in Vortex Mini ROK from fellow Christchurch driver Zac Christensen and Bo Hill from Nelson.
Above: South Island contender Jacob Douglas (pic - Fast Company/Steve King)
Christchurch's Adam Godwin, meanwhile, topped the Junior Rotax points standings at the meeting from from defending South Island class title holder Joshua Bethune from Dunedin.
The South Island meeting also sees a rare triple, with three members of the same family, brothers Caleb and Luke Cross, and their father Hamish, competing. Luke is entered in Junior Rotax, Caleb in 125cc Rotax Max Light, and Hamish 125cc Rotax Max Heavy.
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Above: South Island contender Joshua Bethune (pic - Fast Company/Steve King)