By Allan Powell
On the weekend of Friday 6th and Saturday 7th April at PlaceMakers Huntly and Te Rapa Speedway was the Huntly Door Systems North Island Stockcar championship. Added to the Saturday night show for the finals of the Stockcars was the Future of Speedway Ministock challenge.
On Friday night the 68 Stock cars were split into 3 groups and over the night the groups would have 3 heats of points which would see the top 6 cars per group go through to the finals. The balance of the cars were split into 2 groups for 2 repercharge race and the winner of each repercharge into the final championship.
After all the qualifying heats 5 Huntly cars made it into the final championship group. Those drivers were 7H Dave Moore, 52H Sam Van Amsterdam, 56H Cameron Taylor, 84H Nathan Taylor and 87H Nevin Shrubb. Each driver in his own right had every chance of winning this championship. A good mix of cars from various tracks and again each driver would give it his or her best shot to win. Winner of each repercharge were 95A Gary Lonergan with Lonergan lapping the entire field in the 12 lap race. Lonergan passed cars on the outside on the opening laps to the lead and never looked back for the win. The second repercharge was a great tussle between 422H Blair Ashton, 66A Hayden Hart and 93S Joshua Trott. Ashton lead then passed by Hart which he held to the last lap and by this time 28R Alexandra Jones had caught Hart. On the last corner Jones went under Hart and to the crowds cheering took the win and into the final.
Now it was championship finals time over 3 heats of points for a new champion.
Championship Final with 26 cars were going to fight it out till the end. Heat one was won by 99S William Hughes after Hughes started on pole position and when you strat their you need to win so you can bank all those points. This win was Hughes first win in a Stock car and what a place to get a first up win in a major championship event. 2nd was 95A Gary Lonergan, 3rd 147M Matt Nielsen. Heat two the heat and push of cars was on the rise which saw on the first lap and turn two 96B rolled over and also 147M Nielsen on the infield plus 77P Scott Penn on the infield through the same incident.2 lpas later 7A Josh Simpson hit the wall and out. Heat 2 was won by 7H Dave Moore, 2nd 735A Keegan Orr, 3rd 33S Tyler Walker. Leading on points after 2 heats was William Hughes and now a target but started from the rear grid on the final heat. 9R Sheldon Arapere took the lead in the final heat and held the lead for 12 laps. Moore, Lonergan and Hughes were all making their way forward. Arapere was taken to the wall and this gave Moore his chance to take the lead which he did to the finish. Lonergan and Orr played the waiting game. At the end Orr and Hughes were tied for 3rd place which meant a run off for third place which Orr won after 4 laps. So after playing the waiting game and getting points your new Huntly Door Systems 2018 North Island Stock car champion is Gary Lonergan and in 2nd Dave Moore and 3rd Keegan Orr, 4th William Hughes.
Part 2 on the Saturday nights card was the Future of Speedway Ministocks. 94 cars had come from all over various North Island tracks The Ministock were split into 4 groups depending on your age group.The racing was brilliant, fast and so skill full as many times they race up to 4 wide on the corners.At the end of the night the Inter Club challenge was won by 5M Luke Mc Clymont from Tauranga, 2nd 7P Louis Redshaw from Palmerston North and 3rd 15H Ryan Marshall from Hamilton. More results for Ministocks will come later.
This coming weekend will be the 10th running of Speedfest which started in 2008. This weekend will see all the top classes racing including Superstocks, Stockcars, Super Saloons, Saloons, Modifieds and back this time Sprintcars. Plus added to the end of the night and season will be a huge infield Fireworks display. Check the website for drivers entered. Gates will open at 3pm and racing starts at 6pm.