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50th Anniversary Celebration

This week here at Max Motors Family Speedway we celebrated the 50 th Anniversary of racing at Te Marua. Along with a function on Friday night we also hosted the rolling museum of the Classic Stockcars who treated the spectators to three races. The drivers showed that even though the class is not meant to be too serious they haven’t lost their competitive edge and neither have the cars. The chequered flags were carried by 23v Paul Jamieson, who won two of the races and 71w Andrew Williams.

The Friday Homes Superstocks also helped celebrate Wellington Speedway’s history with the inclusion in their field of 95p Clive Elliot, a driver some of us in our 50’s remember watching race when we were children and also former Wellington Wildcats 591p Wayne Hemi and 599p Ron Tye. In their first heat 15 cars faced the starter and it was one of the newer drivers to the Superstock ranks, 7w Shane Davis, who took the first chequered flag after leading from the off. 46w Ethan Levien continued to go from strength to strength coming from grid 11 to take 2 nd place while 22w Richard Gaskin made it a local trifecta. 591p Wayne Hemi registered a DNF and was unfortunately out for the evening as was 371p Dan Hole. If we were impressed with the performance of 46w Ethan Levien in Heat one,our views were confirmed by the next heat where he took a decisive win. 22w Richard Gaskin showed a good turn of speed on his first meeting of the season to take 2 nd with 471p Benji Sneddon coming home in 3 rd place ahead of another Superstock newbie 69p Todd O’Donnell. In their final heat 46w Ethan Levien again impressed but for different reasons this time, when he slowed up and decided to practice some stirring antics. Unfortunately for him 44p Brendan Sharland decided to take remedial action putting the 46w up the wall backwards and out of the race along with himself. 471p Benji Sneddon took the win after leading the field from the start, 599p Ron Tye had been running in second for most of the race keeping 3nz Jordan Dare at bay but a last minute clash between them allowed the close-running 52w Paul Fairbrother to sneak through to take the 2 nd place spot leaving 3 rd for 599p Ron Tye and 3nz Jordan Dare dropping to near the back of the pack. The Capital Pools and Spas Stockcars presented with a near maximum field this week with drivers from Palmerston North and Wanganui supplementing a good complement of locals. As to be expected with a field this size there was a bit of action in play, with the first person put up the wall being 12w James Martin courtesy of 95w Paul Sammons. 772p Kyle Lampp won the first heat with 67v Nathan Black, a member of the “Black-Arse Racing” Team in 2 nd place and 15w Hayden Thomas holding out 15p Luke Miers for 3 rd place. Heat two was barely started when first heat winner 772p Kyle Lampp was rolled out of the race and a split second later 35p Matt Phippen took a wild ride up and over landing on several cars before settling back on his wheels but out of the race. The race was won by 15p Luke Miers from 172p Daniel Burmeister and 96w Brad McGee. In the third heat former Superstock driver, Josh Kahui, now driving the 88w tank took it upon himself to stir things up along with 72w Josh O’Keefe. Unfortunately the carnage they had caused took its toll on them and once they retired to the infield the race settled down and went to 96w Brad McGee from 35p Matt Phippen and 89v Blair Lockett.

The Panhead Streetstocks were again entertaining. In their first heat 9p Rick Waihi took the early lead and was looking good to win but a spin halfway through the race took his tyre off the rim and sent him to the infield. 26w Hamish Hvid went on to take the race from 17w Byron Sutherland-Old and 9w Aaron Wilton. Their next heat saw spins a plenty with 19w Daniel Fergusson taking the chequered flag from 26w Hamish Hvid and 17w Byron Sutherland-Old. The final race for them was taken out by 26w Hamish Hvid ahead of 9p Rick Waihi and 17w Byron Sutherland –Old.

The Saloons included two visitors from Palmerston North 9p Jabin Clapperton and 57p Calvin Honore. In their first heat 9w Craig Burton looked super-quick in his new car and took a convincing win ahead of 11w Scott Jones and 242w Ashleigh Halcrow. In their next heat 9w Craig Burton made some early passes to take the win from 242w Ashleigh Halcrow and 57p Calvin Honore. The winner of the third heat received a huge round of applause on their well-deserved victory. 34w my Eckersley, new to the class, took the win in fine style, coming home about 5 seconds ahead of the next car which was 98w Tony Cardno. 57p Calvin Honore took 3 rd place.

The Modifieds saw 9w Blair McPhee just make the race meeting in time only to be unable to get his car going on the starting grid of the first race and consequently out for the evening. 11r Wayne Eveleigh took the first race from 57w Ben Cawthra and 5w Brian McPhee. Their next race saw 5w Brian McPhee lead the race until the white flag, where his car suddenly decided to quit leaving the 11r Wayne Eveleigh with the win ahead of 18w Damon Smith having his first meeting in a Modified. 57w Ben Cawthra had a bad race retiring early for the night. Their final race was taken by 5w Brian McPhee from 11r Wayne Eveleigh and 18w Damon Smith who improved every time he went out.

The evening was rounded out by a superb Fireworks display that was enjoyed by the massive crowd.

Photo: Nirvana Lea Bowater

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