23 November 2002, Huntly
A GRADE TRI-SERIES, WAIKATO STREETSTOCK AND
WAIKATO MINISPRINT CHAMPS
Spent the morning with Barry at Frankton Mechanical resetting rockers, points and timing. Car now running on 8 cylinders and sounding awesome. Thanks a heap for your help Barry.
Got to the track at 5pm to be greeted by an awesome line up of machinery in the pits.
The weather was fine, the crowd was coming in big numbers, the NLW Racing Team was all ready for action with last meetings problems hopefully solved.
We were, once again, Race 1 on the program with 9 Ltd Saloons and 4 Super Saloons in attendance.
I drew grid 6 for the first race of the night and was really excited about the performance of the new car during the first couple of laps of wheel packing. When the lights went green, my car promptly saw red and broke down again, just the same as last meeting. To say I was pissed off would be an understatement!
To make matters worse the heavens opened towards the end of the race and threatened to destroy the nights racing. Thankfully the rain didn't get too heavy and didn't last long.
Got back to the pits and found Barry in the crowd who came down to investigate the problem. We found the points burnt again, indicating a problem with the condenser. It is obviously not powerful enough to run 2 sets of points. Barry removed one set of points and we hoped to be all go in race two. Fingers crossed!
Went up on to the dummy grid after the race program was altered because of the downpour only to be told to wait while the Hickey's 2 Seater A Grade Stock Car "Extreme Experience" went around the track with the Classic Hits breakfast show hosts each getting 4 laps on board with Lyle Rumney driving.
Shut off the engine and just waited. Finally got the go ahead and the bloody car wouldn't start.
Thankfully some very kind speedway men pushed the car and we got started and assumed our position on the dummy grid. I got as good a start as I could have hoped for and was first into turn one. I was a bit messy on turn 4 of the first lap and thought to myself I had better be careful there. The new car has more power than I have ever had before and will take some getting used to but, I am not complaining. I lead for the next 4 laps pulling out to a two car length lead from John Brodie 7H and Murray Guy 13M. Unfortunately Mark Dalby 71H had a meeting with the turn 1 wall bringing on the yellow lights allowing the field to bunch up. I got a good start on the green and lead for another couple of laps until I was a little loose coming out of turn 4 allowing John Brodie to run up the inside of me and pass on turn 1. Unfortunately the track had really slicked off by this stage and I made the same damn mistake in the same damn place the next lap allowing Murray Guy to pass as we went under the white flag. I managed to hang on for 3rd place, my best ever placing at Huntly.
I WAS STOKED!!!!!!! Fastest lap time 16.7881 seconds.
Third race and I drew grid 3. A fast start saw me tuck into 4th place and in turn 1 my way was blocked by Murray Guy 13M who was avoiding a car in front of him. I reacted very quickly to avoid hitting Murray but, unfortunately, I stuffed up and hit the clutch instead of the brake and, well I guess you can figure out what happened next. SORRY MURRAY! On the restart my bonnet flew up causing me to have to pull to the infield. Bugger. Poetic really, I suppose, given I had caused the stoppage. Oh well, shit happens.
Loaded the car on to the trailer and sat down in the crowd to watch the rest of the racing program.
All in all a bloody good night. The cars electrical problem has been isolated and just needs to be fixed now.
See ya all next week at Huntly...