We had a crisp, bright start to the day here in Christchurch—ready for a final day of racing here at Euromarque Motorsport Park.
The day started with the final Formula Ford race which brought a fair amount of excitement. Out in front Blake Knowles and Sebastian Manson were battling it out for P1 with Knowles quick off the line keeping Manson hot on his tail.
A racing incident halfway through the race saw Manson lose out on the chance for P1. With a tightened field and a safety car finish—our top three, Blake Knowles, Caleb Byers and Dylan Petch finished the weekend in close succession across the line.
In CTFROC, all eyes were on championship leader Bilinski as he set out for yet another pole position in qualifying ahead of the final two races of round five.
Roman Bilinski kept his comfortable lead taking out pole position, with Liam Sceats close behind—ready to challenge in the feature race.
Race two meant a reversed grid, which made for a good challenge for the Polish driver to work towards a podium position—jumping four places in the first seven laps, but not quite making it to the top. The standout in this race though was South Korean driver Michael Shin who kept up a solid gap from the rest of the grid—taking his first win of the series.
Sceats was hot off the line in the Lady Wigram trophy race, giving Bilinski a good challenge for the win.The young Kiwi stepped up to the challenge keeping in front of the Polish driver, who’s been dominating the series, for all 30 laps—taking P1 and the Lady Wigram trophy.
Bilinski however still managed to claim the fastest lap in lap eight when aiming to take the top spot from his championship challenger.
The Trans-Tasman rivalry rose to new heights following race two of the TA2s, with Aussies taking the lead with 111 team points—Kiwis sitting behind at 99.
A bit of mid race excitement with Andrew Turner going for a spin on turn 11—making for a bit of reverse driving action in the first race. Fortunately he got back on the field and managed to cross the line. An unfortunate start for Ben Stewart who retired in the pits with a broken axle.
Yesterday’s winner Nathan Herne took out the top spot again, joined by fellow Aussies Graham Cheney and Brad Gartner.
Bad luck for with Ben Stewart and the Kiwis the final race of round two, with no spare axles—Stewart was out of the race.
It was a yellow and gold podium for race three—an identical to today’s earlier race, with Nathan Herne claiming his third consecutive win this round. We finish up round one of two with the Aussies on top with a 45 point lead, ready for a challenge from the Kiwis next weekend in Cromwell.
Race two of the Toyota 86 Championship saw Tom Bewley take the lead in the series—his third race win. Race one runner up William Exton kept up the pressure on Tom, but despite putting in the fastest lap—couldn’t quite catch him in the end.
Track limits action a few laps in resulted in a bit of carnage—some loose bumpers and pieces of bodywork a little worse for wear.
Lap one of race three saw John Penny off in the hairpin, resulting in a safety car and his round over early.
The restart kicked things up a notch with plenty of challenges across the field—and another safety car called the first lap after too many cars running wide in turn two. Too much debris on the track caused a red flag with eight laps left.
When we kicked off again with a rolling restart, Jackson Rooney made himself known with a 15 place climb up the grid in amongst the drama—but was a few places shy of making the podium. The race of chaos eventually came to an end with a podium of familiar faces, with William Exton taking out the top spot this time, followed by Jaden Ransley and Tom Bewley.
The threat of rain loomed over race two for the Summerset GTs, but with a stroke of luck conditions remained dry but brought snappy winds.
There was some great action again between Armstrong and Southam at the front during the first quarter of the race—however Armstrong soon dropped down the grid, making room for Brooks and Southam to get through.
This morning’s race was the comeback for Paul Pedersen who took out first place after a retirement in yesterday’s feature race.
Race three saw Southam just miss the podium this time, with Sam Fillmorein his Porsche 992 clinching P3. We had another appearance from Pederson on the podium, but it was Luke Manson who took the top spot this time.
The 31 strong field of Mazdas made for entertainment throughout race two, with challenges both in the top three, mid-field and at the back of the pack. There was no match for Warren Crowther who kept his position the entire race.
Race three for the Mazda Racing series had quite the similar story as race two, with the same driver, Christopher White, running in first the entire race—also producing the fastest lap.