|by Stuart Lee||24 November 2016|
Well, the weather Gods were kind and the North Western Kart Club put on a fantastic State Championship with all finals run under glorious sunshine.
The club must be congratulated for the presentation of the facility, which is the oldest in the country. Well done team.
On to the report...
This class looked to be anybody’s to win after Friday's action. Local hot shoe Keenan Slater took out qualifying with a commanding 3 tenth gap over brother Johnah. However the first heat saw Alastair Lee, who had qualified 6th, take the win, but from then on it was a Jackson Callow stampede.
The Launceston youngster, who had just moved up to seniors, stepped it up a level taking wins in heat 2 and 3 before dominating the final to take home his first blue plate. Second in the final went to wily veteran Peter O’Neill from NSW with Keenan Slater third.
Above: Jackson Callow, KA4 Sportsman winner (pic - Andrew Lamont)
Tasmanian Tate Frost showed the traveling mainland drivers that there was to be no easy Blue Plate on offer for KA4 Junior Light. Frost dominated the meeting with fastest qualifier and 2 heat wins before winning the final ahead of a pair of NSW drivers in Zac Crichton and Benito Montalbano.
This class looked on paper to be one of the closest, and hardest to pick a winner with Brody Appleby, Nathan Zuj, Troy Alger, Jade Waddington and Hobart’s Brad Hobden all having legitimate claims on victory, however Appleby simply treated his rivals with contempt and drove away into the Highclere sunset.
Appleby was the fastest qualifier before taking wins in each heat over the weekend and a six and half second win in the final. Alger was second with a superb drive by Mitchell Lovell from the Southern Tasmanian Kart Club coming home in third.
Tate Frost had a second class that he dominated with victory in the premier junior class of KA3, a second place in heat 2 prevented a clean sweep of the racing. In the final he took the win ahead of Launceston’s Mitchell Kerrison and Victorian Jordyn Sinni.
Above: The KA3 Junior final commenced with some sideways action - Domenic Romeo (12), Tate Frost (62), Jordyn Sinni (5) and Lochie Dalton (45) (pic - Andrew Lamont)
Toby Callow was the standout performer with a clean sweep. The Launceston Kart Club member took qualifying honours and all heat wins before dominating the 26 lap final. Second went to Victorian Cadel Ambrose with another LKC member in Ollie Richardson coming third.
Like Toby Callow in Cadet 9, Brayden Flood took a clean sweep in the TAG Restricted Light class and was never really threatened over the weekend. Flood had too much pace for his rivals and in the end took an eight second win in the final ahead of Hobart’s Nichlolas Walpole and Launceston’s Andrew Lee who scythed his way through the field after starting the final off grid 8.
Above: Tight squeeze at the start of the TaG Restricted Light Final, Brayden Flood leads with James Fyfe up the inside of Nichlolas Walpole (pic - Andrew Lamont)
Nicholas Becker from NSW looked to be the man to beat heading into the final after taking wins in all heat races, however the final didn’t pan out as expected as Dean O’Brien, who set the pace in qualifying, found the setup to win his first state title ahead of Launceston’s Zane Wyatt with Becker relegated to third.
Rhys Smith took line honours in the final of Cadet 12 after a race long battle with Victorian Will Harper, however he was later disqualified for a technical infringement which elevated Harper to the top step of the podium. Second place went to another Victorian in Nicholas Sacco with yet another Victorian in Jesse Lacey third.
Above: Start of the Cadet 12 final Nicholas Sacco #80 and Rhys Smith #57 (pic - Andrew Lamont)
Shane Stonehouse almost took a clean sweep of the TAG Restricted Heavy class only dropping the win in heat 2. Second and third was up for grabs however with many drivers heading into the final with high expectations. It was local North Western Kart Club member Jason Close who got the setup right and took home second with Matthew De Stefano from Victoria third.
Benito Montalbano was in outstanding form in the Heavy class. After claiming a couple of heat wins the NSW driver dominated the heavy final with a commanding 18 second victory over the 26 laps. Tate Frost was relegated to battling out the two remaining podium spots with fellow Launceston Kart Club member Lochie Dalton and Zac Crichton, Frost ended up claiming second narrowly ahead of Dalton in third.
Above: Benito Montalbano, KA4 Junior Heavy winner (pic - Andrew Lamont)
For one of the premier classes on show a lot of the drivers struggled to get the best out of their karts, except for Zane Wyatt and Troy Stone. Wyatt took out qualifying by 3 tenths over Stone and was able to hold out the CRG pilot for the heat races with a number of drivers battling back in the pack for third.
In the final Stone prevailed to take the win and his first blue plate after 15 years of racing. Second went to fellow Launceston Kart Club member Alastair Lee who broke away from the pack with Steven Wrigley third.
The unlucky story was however Wyatt who had lead the first 20 laps of the final only to break a throttle cable, Wyatt battled on with one hand on the steering wheel and one on the carbie but was unable to hold off Stone and finished back in sixth spot.
Above: Start of the KA4 Sportsman Final, #67 Johnah Slater leads Alastair Lee and Jackson Callow (pic - Andrew Lamont)
Over 25% of the entry was from interstate, 30 drivers crossing Bass Strait to contest the 11 classes. Top three were:
KA4 Junior Light:
1 Tate Frost (TAS)
2 Zac Crichton (NSW)
3 Bento Montalbano (NSW)
TaG 125 Light:
1 Brdy Appleby (TAS)
2 Troy Alger (VIC)
3 Mitchell Lovell (TAS)
1 Toby Callow (TAS)
2 Cadel Ambrose (VIC)
3 Ollie Richardson (TAS)
KA3 Senior Heavy:
1 Dean O'Brien (NSW)
2 Zane Wyatt (TAS)
3 Nicholas Becker (NSW)
1 Tate Frost (TAS)
2 Mitchell Kerrison (TAS)
3 Jordyn Sinni (VIC)
TaG 125 Restricted Light:
1 Brayden Flood (VIC)
2 Nicholas Walpole (TAS)
3 Andrew Lee (TAS)
1 Will Harper (VIC)
2 Nicholas Sacco (VIC)
3 Jesse Lacey (VIC)
TaG 125 Heavy:
1 Troy Stone (TAS)
2 Alastair Lee (TAS)
3 Steven Wrigley (TAS)
KA4 Junior Heavy:
1 Benito Montalbano (NSW)
2 Tate Frost (TAS)
3 Lachlan Dalton (TAS)
TaG 125 Restricted Heavy:
1 Shane Stonehouse (TAS)
2 Jason Close (TAS)
3 Matthew De Stefano (VIC)
KA4 Senior Tas Sportsman:
1 Jackson Callow (TAS)
2 Peter O'Neill (NSW)
3 Kennan Slater (TAS)