1 January 2006, Rotorua (Driven by Greg Powell)
I was awake earlyish on the 1st, feeling reasonably good considering... and headed home to start pulling the motor out. On the way Greg rang and said he would pick the whole car up and take it back to the workshop at Mazda Spares in Sheffield Street, where Buck was ready and waiting.
Once we decided that it was going to be too big a mission to transfer the motor it was decided to run my car instead.
The set-up was checked and adjusted, to hopefully suit Greg better, and after Chris Tidd called in to sign off alterations, as required from green-sheeting on the 10th of December, we headed off to Paradise Valley Speedway in Rotorua. (Thanks' Chris.)
We arrived at Rotorua to a very full Pit's as they were also running the BOP Stockcar Champs.
The Rotorua Officials were very welcoming and professional and run a slick operation. A pleasure to race there.
The track looked very wet, but dried quickly and provided a moist, sticky surface all night. A credit to the track preparation team.
13 cars had arrived for the last round of 2 x 15 lap heats (marble draw & reverse grids), a top 8 shoot out over 8 laps and a 15 lap Feature.
We were up race three and the 13 drivers were given a few hot lap's to get used to the track surface & layout. Unfortunately Greg found the car a little too tail happy and wasn't able to avoid spinning a couple of times on turn 2.
The race proper started with Greg on grid 7. A very quick race and Greg finished where he started in 7th place.
We put the car back to my normal set-up and reduced the stagger to hopefully stop the spins. Greg felt the car had heaps of grunt, but he couldn't use it.
The second race of the Series arrived and Greg was again on grid 7. This time Greg spun up on the first lap in turn 2 and we finished towards the rear of the field in 12th spot. This time we tightened the car up and went up into the terraced banking to watch the top 8 shoot out.
Greg was on grid 3 for the feature and got a great start holding 3rd spot going into turn 1 and had moved up to 2nd by turn 3. He then went side by side for a lap with the leader until finally completing the pass. He then took off and lead from there until being spun up in turn 4 of the last lap. I have never been so excited and then so devastated in the space of 1 second. Greg protested the incident and the end result was a FEATURE WIN FOR GREG and the FIRST WIN FOR THE 9H CAMARO for the NLW Racing Team.
Greg Leading The Pack
A huge vote of thanks and a hearty well done to Steve Williams and Carol Primmer for running an awesome series and I hope I will be able to enter the next one as everyone has been immensely pleased with the series.
Also a big thank you to Greg for driving the wheels off the 9H Camaro and helping me to get the set-up better for the Saloon Champ's in Huntly on the 21st of January.
It also felt extremely good to be able to give something back to a sponsor who has been there since day one!
Thank you to all my sponsors and see you at Huntly on the 21st of January...