Tight fights for trophies
Friday, Mar 19 2021
Close racing was the order of the day at Stratford Speedway on Saturday night with winners of three of the four trophies available being decided by just one point.
Of the six classes, the stockcars raced with the biggest field with 28 cars. Blair Wadsworth picked up a good win in the first race ahead of speedster William Hughes with Hughes then going on to win race two. After a second and first place in the first two heats, Hughes looked to be in contention to win the King of the Mountain Champs. However, he was blocked in the third and final heat by Carol Podjursky, allowing her brother Brad to jump to the top of the leader board when he won heat three and then subsequently the King of the Mountain Champs. Mason Woods finished just one point behind Podjursky in second place while Tyler Walker was third.
Eight saloons contested the R&S Dreaver Contractors Taranaki Champs with the field made up of seven locals and Auckland racer Paul Wright. Craig Korff made a good start to his championship bid when he won heat one ahead of Jarrod MacBeth while Blake Hooper was third. Heat two was won by defending champion Mark Hinton ahead of Korff, MacBeth and Hooper making the points very tight going into heat three. MacBeth led for most of heat three from a grid two start while Korff made his way through the field, eventually making a much-needed pass on Richard Dreaver with a couple of laps to go to take position two in the race and gain the points he needed to win the champs. MacBeth was second and Hinton third.
Midgets were back on track for the first time since their New Zealand Grand Prix in mid-February and a field of eight fronted to contest the 2019/20 Heritage Shield, an event that wasn’t run last season due to Covid cutting it short. Greg Jones was in perfect form and recorded a first, second and third place over the three heats to secure first place by one point from Mark Willans while the ever-improving Dylan Waite was third.
Streetstocks raced for their Best Pairs trophy and after three rugged races that included Ron Washer being rolled over by visiting Wellington competitor Aaron Wilton, Experienced racers John Young and Paul Blinkhorne earned enough points to stand at the top of the podium. Ron McGrath and Adam Young were second and the pairing of Steve Reed and Aaron Wilton third.
Both adult and youth ministocks raced on the night with wins in the adult division going the way of Tom Bennett, Gary Adamson and Roger Dettling while the youth division drivers to carry the checkered flag were Rhys White, Caleb Coxhead and Jesse Whelan.
The next race meeting at Stratford Speedway is this coming Saturday (tomorrow) and features the Dairymaster Under 23 Stockcar Champs, John and Gary Adamson Superstock Memorials, Minisprint Oval Superstars Tour and the King of the Mountain Modified Champs. Racing gets underway at 6.30pm.
Caption: Craig Korff (#8) chases Mark Hinton during racing for the R&S Dreaver Contractors Taranaki Saloon Champs on Saturday night. Korff won the champs while Hinton was third.
Photo: Matt Julian