NZ Saloon Champs
Read the review
and results on the Palmerston site , what I have written below is just
some of my observations and opinion of what happened
Full bodied stockcars raced for the NZ Saloon champs at
Palmerston North . The only trouble was they left off the heavy bumpers
and side rails which meant we finished up seeing heaps and heaps of damage
Despite comments since the event that much of the contact
was deliberate I don't believe any of the drivers set out to take any other
out of the running .
The urge to win was strong though and when the front
running cars are pretty quick then chances have to be taken when they present
themselves no matter how slim they may be .
The track played a big part in the proceedings , it was
far better than I expected , enticing drivers to make that do or die pass
that led to their down fall .
Controversy on the first night when well performing 11m
Kevin Moore was excluded from the event for racing an under weight car
. I hadn't attended srcutineering but had assumed all car would have been
weighed there . Not so it seems . SNZ hadn't bothered .
SNZ can weigh 100 or more stockcars before a championship
but 40 odd saloons falls nto the can't or won't do basket
Kevin Mooore had raced quite clean on the night but imagine
if he hadn't and had caused a bingle that had taken three or four other
top runners out of the event . Even now how do we know that some or the
cars that didn't go well but caused prangs were legal at the beginning
of the two nights .
Another school of thought . When a cars is presented at
scrutineering it is checked and if something is amiss then it is rejected
and the driver has a chance to rectify the error and still race . I also
wonder is SNZ's failure to weigh the cars could be classed as entrapment
To my mind SNZ officials lost control of the running of
the meetings I feel . Some of the rough driving should have earned penalties
much earlier in the going rather than waiting until major disasters had
Biggest laugh of the first night for me was watching an
official insist that a saloon reverse up the track because he hadn't stopped
quick enough on a yellow light . Yes Really! . Obviously he thought he
was dealing with stockcars and perhaps he can be forgiven for that misunderstanding
considering the happenings on the track .
Pleasing was the fact that at the end of the two nights
the top three place getters just happened to be three of the cleanest racers
of the weekend . They were all well performing and waited until most of
their main opposition had fallen out before getting the passing they needed
Congratulations to 1nz Dean Waddel , 2nz Todd Moffat
and 3nz Tony Cardwell .
2nz and 3nz were decided by a run off that was
cleanly run .
The printed program was well worth the $5.00 , plenty
of photos and plenty of reading .One of those keep forever ones . Full
marks to Tim Savell for the effort , it is appreciated .
Commentating was good with the two locals being assisted
by Barry Brown and Malcom Sines . The roving microphones were a bit erratic
at times and the only let down . I feel an error was made in interviewing
Skinny and Lance Jennings as previous experience proves that what they
say after just crashing out of a big meeting is not always appropriate
The Palmerston promotion did a good job with running the
show and Scot Miers thanking his track staff for their efforts was
a nice touch .
I have always enjoyed good fast and daring saloon racing
and I'm always happy when the best on the night do the winning .
Not so with everyone though I found out and dare I say
it those of the female gender are the most fiery when it comes to saloon
drivers . A couple of them were sitting near me on finals night and it
was quite an educational experience . They have their favorite drivers
and come hell or high water those drivers can do wrong .
Any driver that beats their favorite is a cheater of
the worst kind . Any bingle that happens to their driver is always the
cheaters fault and if any official penalises their driver then that official
should be dispatched forthwith .
The drivers they don't like are hated and despised and
should one of these drivers fall foul of officialdom then a mere exclusion
or relegation is nowhere near good enough . such drivers should be banned
for life and worse .
All this and more is snarled with venom dripping onto
the terraces stopping any such as this mere male from arguing the toss
wth them .
Scarey stuff but also quite entertaining and the passion
expressed was wonderful .
I enjoyed the NZ Saloon Champs but with just a touch of
regret that I didn't get to see all of the best racing at their best .