Tony Kart Australia welcomed over 2 young drivers from New Zealand for this years City of Melbourne Titles.
Ryan Wood and Louis Sharp were the winners of their respective classes in the Gold Star series in New Zealand, which earned them a drive over here for this event.
With our new rule that prevents kids from practice on the Friday, it was going to be a tough weekend. After only 2 practice sessions on Saturday morning (both in the wet), qualifying was in the dry and Louis was up first in Cadet 9. In his first session on dry tyres Louis qaulified on pole position by a huge 2 tenths!. Having only done 20 laps at the track before hand this was an excellent result, showing the excellent parity of the new Vortex Mini ROK engines and why the Rocky 900 is the chassis to have in this class.
Louis was unfortunately involved in an incident in heat 1 which caused a DNF, however he bounced back with 4th place in heat 2. Due to his DNF Louis had to start the pre-final from the rear of the grid and stormed through to claim 3rd position at the end. Starting out of grid 3 for the final Louis got an excellent start and moved into the lead on lap 3 only to be spun around by another driver trying to force a pass that wasn't there. This pushed Louis back to 3rd where he pulled back in the 1st and 2nd placed drivers but unfortunately couldn't get past them, crossing the finish line in 3rd position. To show the superior speed that Louis had in his Rocky 900, he set the fastest laptime of the race and was 3.5 tenths faster than the winner of the race.
In Cadet 12, Ryan Wood was in the same boat as Louis, having never done a dry lap until qualifying, he drove his Rookie 950 chassis to 6th position in qualifying. Racing was going to be tough as there was only 1 tenth seprating the top 8 drivers in qualifying! Ryan finished in 5th in his first heat and got a great start in heat 2 to cross the finish line in 1st position. This pus Ryan on pole position for the pre-final where a small change to the kart didn't pay off and he finished in 3rd position. After a long 16 laps final Ryan, finished in 3rd position. Showing laptimes the same as the leader was a fantastic performance with such little track time.
Also congratulations to Jay Hanson who finished a close 2nd in the final of Cadet 12 and also to Tex Starr - McKoy who qualified in 5th position and never finished outside the top 5 all weekend. Tex finished in 5th position in the final.
Tony Kart Australia would like to congratulate Ryan and Louis on their fantastic results over the weekend along with all the other Tony Kart drivers.
Ryan and Louis both showed they can race at the front and hope they can return to Australia again to try and claim the victory!
(Photo - Mark Wicks, kartsportnews.com)
(Photo - Paul Feely)