By Allan Powell
Finally at Huntly PlaceMakers Speedway the weather was kind and great. The club has had a bit of a hammering with heavy rain resulting in 2 rainouts in the last month. During this break the track has had a new surface laid down. Around 4 inches of new orange coloured clay with most drivers not knowing seen the new surface would make it very interesting racing on the night. This surface proved to be fast, smooth and real racey throughout the night five new lap records were set.
Brad Lane in the 119H Modified was first to lower the modified lap record in heat one. Lane`s new time of 13.8165 previously bet the old record of 13.847 held by Brad`s dad Scott Lane in the same car 11 years ago, but Scott said the car now has been upgrade a lot since that time. If this wasn’t enough in heat 2 Brad smashed heat one`s record and now the modified record stands at 13.7604. Also on the night a new Production Saloon lap record to 10H Larry Bingham of 17.8 seconds.
Next lap record to go was the Minisprint record held by Daniel Thomas for a few years. Heat one of the Compu Hub Waikato Minisprints champs 57H Ben Vaughan become the first driver in a Minisprint to go under 14 seconds for a lap and set the new lap time at 13.98 second and also taking the win. Heat 2 for Minisprints and this time Ben Vaughan and 77H Regan Marceau collided on lap one putting Vaughan to the rear on the restart. Out front this time was 37K Jade Barnett and in this heat Barnett set another new Minisprint lap record time of 13.88 and also taking the win from Marceau then 23H Jonathan Martin. Final heat and feature Vaughan took the early lead and this time pushing the car really hard couldn’t get his lap record back, but took the win from Barnett and the Marceau. The 2017 Compu Hub Waikato Minisprints was won by Barnett, 2nd Marceau and 3rd Vaughan. Who knows later racing in the season could see the lap record go again.
Second championship event on the night was the Livestock Feeds Systems Waikato Saloon champs. Run over 3 heats on points. Heat one 14 cars on the grid with 66H Craig Marsh was on pole and them shortly after the race started 66R Peter Church clipped the rear of 86H Stefan Roigard and rolled. On lap 8 166H Geoff Webb went hard up the inside of 8M Jared Fletcher causing a tangle with Fletcher sent to the rear of the field. As the race went on Marsh took the win from 18K Chris Taylor then Webb. Heat two and on lap one the top 3 points cars from heat one all tangled on turn 2. Webb rolled his car and all three cars went to the infield and a loss of big points. On lap six 77K Rossco Cresswell went around the outside of 33H Ryan Burley and 8H Chris Johnson. Cresswell held the lead to the end from Johnson and Burley. Heat three and the feature and now was your chance to cement a place in the top 3. Taylor had the early lead. The Saloons behind Taylor of Peat, Burley and Creswell were all going for the positions and points. Taylor took the win, but managed 4th on points overall after the DNF of heat two. Overall winner on 32 points was Josie Peat and new Livestock Feed Systems Waikato Saloon champion. 2nd was Rossco Creswell and in 3rd place Ryan Burley.
Streetcar Endurance racing was a support class on the night. A once a year event at Huntly for these cars with a 15 lap and 40 lap race on the night. Race one was won by 34 Glen Pepper and the big finale was won by 129 Jared Mitchell, 2nd Grant Endro and 3rd Nick Elliot.
Next meeting at Huntly PlaceMakers Speedway is this Saturday the Hamilton Windscreens meeting plus the Hamilton Collision Repairs Waikato Ministocks. Racing starts at 6pm.