Agrade Tri-Series Round One
Agrade Stockcar Teams racing is a rare sight this early in
a new season and to have 3 bouts on the card was too much of an enticement
to resist .
First impression when it was realised that some of the
established teams racing star drivers weren't fronting was one of some
little disappointment . As it turned out those stars weren't needed because
new one's were born to shine instead .
If there was any downside it was that at 10 laps the races
were a tad short , 12 laps would have been more the go .
Teams Race One -
On the face of it the Wanderers were by far the stronger
team while the Rotorua outfit looked more like Rookie Rebels rather than
||8h Dave Roigard , 5h Shaun Wade , 33h Callum McCleod
, 85h Jared Wade ,
||22r Kevin Brooks ,33r Robbie Mabey , 93r Gary Hunter
, 99r Callan Hose
the accomplished unit we are used to seeing on these
occasions . 12h Chris Bear was reserve for the Wanderers .
Rebels had pole and 33r Robbie Mabey started from there
, on the outside sat 33h and when the flag dropped he stayed sat with
foot hard on the stop pedal holding up the outside lane
By the time 33r Mabey got to turn one 85h Jared Wade
was already on 33r's case . A punt from 93r Gary Hunter sent the 85h around
the outside of 33r who took the opportunity to attack
allowing 93r to take the lead with 8h Dave Roigard chasing hard in second
Hunter still held the lead a lap or two later
but by now Jarred Wade had got past Roigard for second .
When Hunter neared the waiting 33h Callum McCleod 99r
Callan Hose kept 33h busy while Hunter passed by between the dueling
duo and the wall .
22r Kevin Brooks was another doing a starling job of
reading the race and once 93r Gary Hunter went by he hooked Jared Wade
the track and onto the infield causing delay to 85h and
relieving him of the air that was contained in the left front tyre of the
99r was next on attack giving 33h Callum McCleod a taste
of cement on the back straight leaving 33h stalled sideways on the track
33h got going again .
Disaster for Gary Hunter when he got caught up in a little
war that was happening on the main straight between 99r and 85h and to
be honest I'm not sure who went by for the lead at this
stage but it was either 33r Robbie Mabey or 8h Dave Roigard .
Either way 99r and 33r decided to try and sort 8h out
resulting in 8h sliding sideways on to the grass with some assistance from
33r Robbie Mabey continued on until blocked by 85h Jarred
Wade which allowed the recovered 8h of Dave Roigard to take up the
front running .
I had been waiting for 93r to appear in amongst the action
I was filming but my next sighting of him was crawling round the track
some sort of steering problem. The Rebels who had looked
the goods for a good part of the race were now in bother .
On the second to last lap Roigard led but was being chased
hard by 99r Callan Hose who had closed to within a car length .
It was obvious that 99r was on a killing mission and
8h was his target .
It was quite a sight to see an agrade stockcar lifting
it's left front wheel as it bounced through the turns , yep Hose was giving
and more .
Unfortunately for 99r Jared Wade was waiting in turn
1 of the last lap and took 99r for wee excursion up the turn two wall letting
run home free for the Wanderers win . A good teams race
though with not a loser in sight .
With the Wanderers appearing in team colours it was only
later on I realised I hadn't spotted 5h Shaun Wade amongst the action
and on checking it appears he never made more than half
a lap of the race . I'm not sure of the reason . Perhaps he was got or
he just broke down .
There was certainly much more to the race than what I
have described here .
Teams Race Two
||19m Kerry Remnant , 23m Tony Melyers , 51m Rodney Wood
, 65m Mark Thompson
||22r Kevin Brooks , 33r Robbie Mabey , 99r Callan
The Rebels were on the back foot in this match because
they only arrived with 4 cars and because Gary Hunter was a non starter
was a case of three cars versus four .
Baypark had 41m Dougan Hart standing by as reserve which
means not only was he part of the winning agrade team but did double
duty and won the Waikato Std Stock Champs on the same
Baypark had pole for this one and 19m Kerry Remnant was
obviously going to be the Busters runner . Robbie Mabey sat outside of
him with the rest in normal staggered grid fashion behind
. 51m Rodney Wood was on the inside of row three .
22r Kevin Brooks delayed Wood for a moment at the green
by standing on his brakes . Remnant with more power than ever available
was gone in a flash and we wondered whether the race
had been decided right then and there . Remnant survived a good blocking
attack from 22r Kevin Brooks early on and was barely
99r Callan Hose was the best placed of the Rebels but
really it was all he could do to keep Remnant in sight . Brooks second
on Remnant in turn two was a beauty . It spun Remnant
backwards into the turn two exit wall , the 19m flailing in the air then
crashing back to the track facing the right direction
assisted by 22r's follow through . 19h came to rest and what appeared
to be a
major fuel fire erupted in the engine bay
which caused the officials to activate the red light and justifiably too
. No sooner had the
red come on and the 19m engine burst back into
life and the fire vanished . Sensible officiating allowed Remnant to continue
event although he now had a decidedly less than perfect
race car .
By now Rodney Wood had a flat left front , Remnant was
off the pace and when joined by 23m Tony Melyers there was a Buster
trio wreaking havoc on the Rebels . There was a Buster
still at speed though and 65m Mark Thompson was the winner at the end
of ten laps .
Teams Race Three
||19m Kerry Remnant , 23m Tony Melyers , 51m Rodney Wood
, 65m Mark Thompson
||8h Dave Roigard , 12h Chris Bear , 33h Callum McCleod
, 85h Jared Wade
Another bruiser of a race was anticipated and had
been delivered when this race was done with .
12h Chris Bear was replacement for 5h Shaun Wade and
as far as I know this was Bear's first teams race ever and he darn near
won it .
Rodney Wood was on pole for the Busters and it was a
surprise that the car many regard as the fastest in the land never moved
when the green was shown . I'm thinking ' foot stuck
on brake pedal ' must be a grid one malady that strikes without warning
33h Callum McCleod and 19m Kerry Remnant were the first
two to get going with Remnant expecting to blast around the outside
McCleod only to be disappointed when 33h turned right
and gave him a taste of concrete wall . Remnant survived to spin off onto
the grass before rejoining the race .
A tussle between 65m Mark Thompson and 8h Dave Roigard
had both cars checking out the grass for a brief time .
85h Jared Wade was the first car traveling at speed down
the back straight and he was being chased by 51 Rodney Wood .
In third and not far behind Wood was 12h Chris Bear .
Next time down the back straight Wood executed a reverse spin on Wade .
Wade lost time getting turned around again while Wood
skidded through the infield at which time12h Chris Bear took up first
place running .
Wood was on his rear bumper entering turn three though
and also 23m Tony Melyers was in blocking mode there too . Ahead of
Melyers was another block in the form of 33h Callum McCleod
Somehow Bear found the brave bits needed to keep moving
and avoided the 23m and sped off down the main straight . It's pretty
hard to beat 51m Rodney Wood at anytime let alone a teams
race and the sight of 51m closing real fast send shivers through my spine
. This meeting was running to a ' no straight lining ' rule though and
in accordance with that Rodney Wood backed off after giving
12h a serious punt in the rear .
Bear survived his touch with the wall and continued on
although Wood was now through and into the lead .
No sooner had that happened and a battling 65m Mark Thompson
and 33h Callum McCleod arrived in the same turn culminating in
33h riding up on to the bonnet of 65m . They got themselves
sorted out eventually .
A lap later and Rodney Wood turns up at the same action
attracting end of the track only to be collared by 8m Dave Roigard with
85h close at hand to provide the follow through . The
Huntly cars beat a hasty retreat leaving Wood facing the wrong way .
By the time Wood got himself sorted 12h Chris Bear was
back in front by the length of the back straight . Wood set out after him
again and made up some ground before falling victim to 85h Jared Wade who
showed Wood where the turn one wall was .
Once again the 'no straight lining rule ' was obeyed
but this time by Wade on Wood . More contact between 85h and 51m had both
cars spinning onto the back straight grass .
When 12h Chris bear arrived to put a lap up on 51m and
85h in turn three he hesitated momentarily which allowed 65m Mark Thompson
to catch and spin 12h . Bear was quickly back on the
pace though and still held the lead although with 19m Kerry Remnant just
car lengths behind by the time Bear arrived in turn one
which was where 51m Rodney Wood had decided to lay in waiting .
Mark Thompson was also waiting at the apex of the turn
and just ahead of Thompson was a somewhat crippled 85h Jared Wade .
Bear never hesitated this time and sped around the outside
of Wood and then Thompson . Thompson's increase in speed brought
him up on to the rear of the Wade 85h which negated his
effort to get Bear .
Heading down the back straight for the second to last
time Wood poured on the pace and collected Bear trapping him against the
wall in turn four . Remnant raced through to pick up the white flag and
then the win for the Busters .