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Palmerston North - Saturday 26 November 2005
Caravan Derby
Words and pictures Mike Pollard

 

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Palmerston North - Saturday 26 November 2005
Caravan Derby


Words and pictures Mike Pollard


The weather Gods dont normally deal you a good hand, but today I was dealt a straight flush!
As most meetings in the lower North Island were rained out early, it was a case of follow the sunshine (or at least flee from the rainclouds) and meant that all roads lead to Palmy for 170 or so competitors eager to get their speedway fix for the weekend.
Hello and welcome to Palmerston North for an absolute corker of a meeting, with packed grids in most classes, it was action central.

Superstocks

Heat

The first race of the day for the Superstocks seemed to set the tone for the whole evening .... a simply stunning race!
Green flag and #4p Joel Pitcher is immediately sent to the grass as #66p Tony Whittaker is 1st to show from pole, with #97p Graeme Ward quickly moving into 2nd ahead of #72p Simon Joblin who was doing well holding on to 3rd ahead of #65b John Hynd. Ward makes a move for the lead only to get it wrong and slip down to 3rd. Whittaker leads from Joblin, Ward, Hynd, Pitcher, with #8p Scott Miers and #58 Peter Bengston also coming onto the scene. #112p Shaun Pearson gets a welcome from #10p Peter Rees as they tangle and take to the centre green. Big hits all round the stadium as Whittaker stays out front with Pitcher and Hynd challenging for 2nd ahead of fast closing Bengston.
All of a sudden the leader Whittaker slows handing Hynd the lead who is only just hanging on from Pitcher and Bengston, with all x 3 now running just inches apart. All of a sudden the red flags are out to rescue a stranded car. Green flag and Bengston despatches both the leader and a lap down Rees with a single hit to take the lead, but in doing so now has Miers on his tail. Bengston crosses the line just ahead of Miers leaving Humphries to edge out Ward for 3rd.

1.#58p Peter Bengston 2.#8p Scott Miers 3.#98p Craig Humphries 4.#97p Graeme Ward 5.#65b John Hynd 6.#66p Tony Whittaker

Feature
#66p Tony Whittaker is first away yet again, but is sent sideways by #33p Craig Rolsten who takes the lead followed by #4p Joel Pitcher. One more lap and Pitcher moves ahead and starts to pull clear as #10p Peter Rees moves into 2nd ahead of Rolsten. Meanwhile Whittaker finds himself behind #8 Scott Miers and launches a humungus attack as part of their ongoing weekly feud! Miers and his tank seem unstoppable though as he simply shrugs of the attack and allthough a lap down manages to overtake 3rd place Rolsten before Rolsten gets slammed into the wall by upwardly mobile #9p Brett Hyslop. The unfortunate Rolsten bounces off the wall and straight into the path of Whittaker, who wastes no time in seeking retribution for the start, adding to Rolsten's grief by turning him over!
Meanwhile at the pointy end Pitcher must have caught a crab as Rees, Humphries and Hyslop are the first to finish.

1.#10p Peter Rees 2.#98p 3.#9p Brett Hyslop 4.#4p Joel Pitcher 5.#112p Shaun Pearson 6.#5p Colin Gibbs

Grand Slam (all in)
Unusually for an all-in, the superstocks are starting with the stockcars rather than take up a half lap handicap, and we have a ROLLING START.
On the drop its #84b Mike Mac who initially gets the better of #64b Beatle Tarrant, but you can see why #9p Brett Hyslop leads the Rolling Start points chart as after the first lap he leads from Tarrant after starting at the back! Tarrant finds the going tough trying to compete against the superstocks as #97p Graeme Ward and #112p Shaun Pearson give chase to Hyslop. #65b John Hynd gets stranded on turn 2 for a number of laps as #52v Francis Potaka is introduced to the wall. Pearson's chance of a top 3 finish evaporates as he tastes the flavour of the #55b Tony True bumper, with both #10p Rees and #66p Whittaker joining in. It was busy at the other end of the stadium as well, as #49p Steven Bleackley was being hammered into the wall by #82p Shane McEwan. White flag as Miers has the last word in his battle with Whittaker and Rees launches an attack on Tony True. Chequered flies for Hyslop and Ward but no-one is willing to overtake the tangling feuding cars of Rees and True, and it is left to #19r Lance Aldridge to lead home the rest of the field an absolute age behind the first two.

1.#9p 2.#97p 3.#19r Lance Aldridge 4.#89p Robert Anderson 5.#98p 6#82p Shane McEwan

Caravan Derby

As it happens I spent most of the week with Bevan Johnston at the H.Q. of the Dirty Rottens Inc, helping to spam up a banger (sorry, derby car) or three! Never having done this before it was very illuminating.
Most of my time was spent on the #03 rover 90, which by the end of the week was purring and running really sweet.
Imagine my horror as the green flag dropped, only to see the whole field stream past Bevan as the rover inched it's way in super slo-mo off the start line!
This was actually a race, although I dont think anybody bothered to tell the drivers!
The highlight came early as dirty rotten Clint Lyford drove "inside" the caravan of #68 Matt Southgate and became a passenger for the rest of the event as the "roadtrain" careered around the oval.
Bevan finally managed to get the Rover to move a little faster....it was now like a tortoise instead of a snail ...only for #94w Peter Banner to smash into the back of the combo ......back to being a snail. This I think was enough for Bevan who picked up as much pace as possible before hitting the self-destruct button, turning right and putting the thing in the wall!
At the end there appeared to be only the #4 car of dirty rotten Shane Brener and the #10 Gary Prentice who had any kind of trailer attached, and with the track well and truly blocked on turn 4, it was left to the starter to run on the track and award the chequered to my mate Shane who was competing in only his second ever event. Well done mate, get the beers in!

Cars racing
Stockcars 35
Snr Ministocks 33
Jnr Ministocks 32
Superstocks 21
Caravans 12
Sidecars 10
Solos 9
Super Saloons 9
Sprintcar 1 (demo)



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