Waikaraka Park Second Practice
Before heading down to Huntly for the season opener I had
time for a quick visit to the home of stockcar and saloon racing in Auckland
Park has been through some lean times in recent years and despite always
having a pretty good sort of competitor base lac lustre efforts with regards
managing the place and not running an efficient program on race nights
has seen the crowds stay away in droves .
Not all has been bad though with many good things happening
last season . The sound system upgrading towards the end of the season
allowing Jamie McCarthy to shine as a top notch commentator was most
welcome . The weather finally started behaving itself and it all culminated
when a few enthusiastic people resurrected the canned Modified Super Dirt
and provided me and many others with a meeting the equal of any other in
the country last season .
This season there has been a change of guard yet again
with a promise of much more improvement . Gone I'm told is the infighting
that was stymieing progress before . All hands have been on deck to clean
the venue up and make it a much more pleasant place to frequent on Saturday
The work to the venue was pretty obvious to me when I
visited . Lots of fresh paint . The stands in cemetary bend have been resited
and a clear view of the track is possible from both stands now .
NZ Crane Hire are the naming rights sponsor at waikaraka this season and
their signage can't be missed .
There was a much more obvious change at Waikaraka that
I noticed very quickly . Everyone was happy and everyone was mucking
in and getting things done . The
little water truck was the only exception , first refusing to go and
then later in the day rolling on it's back
in the ultimate act of defiance . Even the pictures I
took of the thing never turned out .
The most important part of any speedway is the fields
of race cars and on this practice day there were plenty of those . Obviously
there will be more cars yet to appear but the sampling I saw gives me confidence
the on track action will be there again this season . The news that Paully
Rawiri will have a new steed is just icing on the cake .
On Labour Day monday there will be the final practice
leading up to opening night on the following Saturday night . If you are
one of the disallusioned who had ceased attending Waikaraka Park
then I suggest you get yourself over there for a look see on Monday
sometime around 1 pm . If you are not swayed towards returning for opening
night then there is no hope for you . Order the coffin .
|Note the paint on the grandstand seats
||Check the walking track around the cemetary bend
stands that now have pretection against the sometimes
chilling breeze , not to mention pilfering fingers .
|Aaron Headington practiced before heading to Huntly
||Agrade or Std?.
|33a Chris Drube
||Auckland's gain = Wellington's loss
|Not all cars were looking pretty
||All bite no bark? , wait and see . 61a Marc Flemming