The Griffiths Report September Club Day 2012

OGKRC’s starter Paul Griffiths has filed the following race report after Sunday’s September Club Day Races. Also, big thanks to Gerard Bolton Photography who attended this event and has supplied the photos that are part of this post. Gerard can be contacted via facebook or email. You can view his other photos from this event by clicking here.

A chilly September morning greeted the 119 karters who turned up for Oakleigh’s Club Day this month and light drizzle began to fall during the carbie sessions, but by Feature Class Qualifying time we were reaching for the sunnies. The weather looked like being the same sort of delightful combination that livened up yesterday’s AFL Grand Final – a mix of icy wind and swirling rain interspersed by periods of bright sunshine. Ahhh Melbourne!!

Rookies / Cadets

In Rookies Heat 1 it was Jake Harewood off Pole with Jordan Dudfield beside him, Jay Di Virgilio, Kain Kugimiya and Luka Anicic rounding out the top 5. Cadets saw Jai Sparey the number 1 man, then Braydon Callaghan and Christian Pancione. Dudfield a good start and to the lead and he and Harewood pulled a gap on the field. From the Cadets running off the back it was the blue plate of Sparey soon mixing it amongst the slower Rookies and Callaghan and Pancione at the back. Di Virgilio was onto the back of the front 2 Rookies after a few laps, as was Oscar Piastri who had started 11th and he was through to the lead with 5 to go, Anicic also joining the front bunch in 4th. In Cadets still Sparey out front and working his way through the Rookie field. By the end Piastri had checked out at the front, Anicic worked through to 2nd then Jack Bell who snuck under Dudfield on the last lap and Harewood the top 5.

Heat 2 began with Patrick Forrester off Pole, then Heat 1 winner Oscar Piastri – Callaghan and Sparey the front row of Cadets. Piastri no surprise to the lead from Steel and Torcasio – in Cadets Callaghan off first corner so only Sparey and Pancione left for them, with Sparey in the lead until he then went off at JSKC in Lap 2, so only Pancione left. Piastri all alone out the front of Rookies with Bell through to 2nd then Torcasio and Anicic by halfway. Anicic was pressuring Torcasio and got under him at Tony Kart turn with 4 laps remaining to go into 3rd, but Piastri was over 3 seconds clear out front and held on for a comfortable win, Pancione the sole remaining Cadet just avoiding being lapped by Piastri as he took the win.

Piastri then Bell and Anicic in Rookies, and Sparey, Callaghan and Pancione in Cadets – Sparey in for a testing race as he got caught in a tangle of Rookies at JSKC corner on lap 1 and went right to the back. By halfway Piastri had a comfortable lead in Rookies from Bell who was also well clear of Steel and Anicic dicing for 3rd and 4th. Meanwhile in Cadets Sparey had recovered and passed Callaghan in the Dipper for the lead with 3 to go. Piastri well clear in Rookies, same for Bell in 2nd and Anicic pulled away from Steel for 3rd. Courtesy of the DNF’s in Heat 2, P Plater Pancione took the win for the day in Cadets from Sparey and Callaghan – proof that to finish first you must first finish.

All points result for the day Rookies: 1. Piastri 2. Bell 3. Anicic

All points result for the day Cadets: 1. Pancione 2. Sparey 3. Callaghan

Sportsman Heavy

Ashley Thompson led Sportsman Heavy away but Andrew Yuill to the lead and Thompson into the trap at JSKC corner so a crook start to the day for him. Aron Lawrence was then into 2nd followed by Luke Andoloro through from 10th. By halfway Yuill had dropped back and Lawrence assumed the lead with Andoloro close behind. Lawrence held on in the end, Andoloro then Mark Hunt then Yuill and Rhys Hunt.

Greg Smart off Pole for Heat 2, then Rhys Hunt, Mark Hunt and Andoloro. Just as Rhys Hunt and Andoloro got to the lead at the start a few more spots of rain started falling, but these 2, then Smart and Mark Hunt pulled away from Vern Kranz, Thompson and Andrew Jackson while Yuill and Lawrence tangled further back in the field. By halfway the rain went away, the track dried, and out front still Rhys Hunt with Andoloro right on his tail and Smart doing well back in 3rd. Try as he might Andoloro could not get under Rhys Hunt – he had half a look at Tony Kart turn on the last lap but settled for 2nd in the end with Smart closing right in on them for 3rd.

The track was bathed in sunshine by the time Sportsman Heavy began Heat 3 – the sun particularly shining on Andoloro off pole, then Rhys Hunt, Mark Hunt and Yuill. Andoloro off to a good start and took Rhys Hunt with him, while Mark Hunt, Yuill, Smart and Kranz followed. The sole Rotax in the field, Andoloro seemed up to the task but Rhys Hunt wasn’t letting him get away. With 4 to go Andoloro had pulled small gap and suddenly Mark Hunt was right on Rhys and Yuill not far behind either, while Andoloro drove away. Last lap and Mark Hunt under Rhys Hunt at MKC Corner for 2nd with Andoloro a comfortable winner.

All points result for the day: 1. Andoloro 2. Rhys Hunt 3. Mark Hunt

Junior Clubman

Matthew Mclean, then Jordan Holowell and Damon Strongman the first 3 for Heat 1 of Junior Clubman. A good start by Holowell saw him lead McLean and Strongman then Jordan Poxon and Matthew Lane. By lap 4 McLean had regained the lead and Lane was through to 4th with Poxon off at the end of the straight. With 3 to go they had bunched up at the front and Strongman was looking to improve on his 3rd place, suddenly Holowell and Strongman both under McLean at Arrow with Strongman briefly in the lead before Holowell claimed it back – Mc Lean now in 3rd. At JSKC corner as they began the last lap Strongman dived under brakes – then Holowell back under him at Tony Kart turn, good close racing and while they stayed bunched together, they finished in this order.

Dylan Slits leads them away in Heat 2 then Lane and Justin Carless and at the green Lane around the outside from Slits, with Strongman through to 3rd, then 2nd on Lap 2 at Tony Kart turn – Carless closing in 4th. Strongman went through to the lead on Lap 4 but Lane was glued right on him and Slits only a few kart lengths back as well. Eventually they spread out to see Strongman, Lane, Slits and Carless the top 4 as they crossed the line.

Second Heat winner Strongman found himself on pole for Heat 3 and led Lane, Holowell and Slits around for the first few laps. Slits dropped back into the clutches of Poxon as the front 3 drew away, Strongman still leading by half a second. Gradually Strongman got clear and Holowell and Lane touched into JSKC corner giving him a bigger gap as they dropped back while sorting things out. Eventually Strongman a comfortable winner from Holowell, Lane and Slits.

All points result for the day: 1. Strongman 2. Holowell 3. Lane

Sportsman Light

Shane Alabaster off pole but Michael Carless the big mover at the start, straight into 2nd ahead of Josh King, Corey Paterson and Robert Barnes. Alabaster held the lead until lap 3 when Carless and then King went under him in the infield. These 2 worked away and built a good gap on the field but could King get close enough to have a shot at the lead? With the gap down to a couple of tenths he was looking threatening but Carless held on, Alabaster back in 3rd.

Bright sunshine by the time Heat 2 started for Sportsman Light, Carless off pole then King, Barnes, Paterson, Alabaster, with Carless and King getting a good break on the rest and that’s how they stayed for the next 10 laps – Carless just, over King, then Alabaster well back in 3rd.

Carless began Heat 3 off pole, King and Alabaster behind him – then Paterson making up a quartet of FA karts, with Barnes the sole Kosmic in 5th. Carless, King, Alabaster after one lap, Patterson retiring on lap 2, which elevated Barnes to 4th. King was closing on Carless by halfway and looked like he might make a move, but Carless was keeping a cool head and drove smoothly over the last few laps, providing King with no opportunity to get past and he duly held on for the win, Alabaster well back in 3rd.

All points result for the day: 1. Carless 2. King 3. Alabaster

Clubman Light

Caleb Citrine from P2 into the lead, then Wayne Bourke and pole man Mark Appleby 3rd, followed by Trevor Allen then John Reynolds and Ben Creed. Bourke to the lead as Citrine, Appleby, Allen and Reynolds engaged in a fierce battle behind him, Appleby and Citrine side by side through the Dipper on Lap 4. Eventually Appleby pulled clear and caught, then passed Bourke leaving Citrine in 3rd with Allen 4th until Citrine ran wide exiting Grid Corner and took something of a bath in the puddle at the edge of the track but continued, by now in 8th. All interest in the front 2, with Bourke regaining the lead on the second last lap and holding on to take a narrow win from Appleby with Allen back in 3rd.

Pole man Maxwell Benson swamped at the start as Nicholas Ingham, Nichols and Allen all got through. By lap 2 it was Nichols, then Ingham, Allen, Bourke and Creed as they settled down for the journey. Ingham and Nichols started passing each other and this brought Allen and Bourke right on to them, Bourke through to 3rd at JSKC as they started lap 5 and Ingham to the lead. Bourke could not get past Nichols despite a couple of attempts and this gave Ingham something of a break on the rest which he maintained until the chequered flag.

Bourke off to a flyer as they began Heat 3, then Nichols, Appleby and Allen. Reynolds reeled in this group to tack on in 5th, but Bourke was pulling clear out front and, like the Sydney Swans, marched onwards to victory, with Appleby going under Nichols for 2nd and Allen then Reynolds rounding out the top 5.

All points result for the day: 1. Bourke 2. Nichols 3. Appleby

Sportsman Restricted

A healthy field of 27 R125’s greeted the starter for Heat 1, German Coombes the pole man, then Ben Freemen, Craig Westwood and Wayne Morgan. German Coombes to the lead and a largely clean get away for most karts with Jason Harewood and Cameron Burton off at JSKC Lap 1 the only casualties. Alan Zammit to the lead after a lap, then German Coombes, Morgan, Freeman (that combination again), Bideleux and Kevin Coombes through from 14th. Zammit checked out at the front leaving Morgan well behind him, then Bideleux through to 3rd. No one was catching Zammit, but Morgan, Bideleux and Kevin Coombes put on a great battle for 2nd,3rd and 4th finishing in that order with less than 2/10ths separating the 3 of them.

Kevin Coombes off pole this time around, then Chris Piastri, Richard Matera, Robert Baldacchino and Stephen Bideleux as a sweeping rain shower arrived just before the gate was opened, then stopped as suddenly as it started, leaving the track damp but not exactly wet. Kevin Coombes to the lead, Matera, Bideleux then Piastri once they settled down. With 3 to go Bideleux got through to 2nd but well clear was Kevin Coombes, leading by nearly 4 seconds and held on for the win.

Zammit found himself off Pole for Heat 3, leading Kevin Coombes and Bideleux, Matera and Alan Davison. Kevin Coombes to the lead and they all made it through the first corner – even better they all completed the first lap – then it went sour for a few of them at JSKC Corner, but Kevin Coombes well away in front, then Bideleux and Zammit, Nathan Grover and Matera the top 5. With 2 to go Kevin Coombes had a 5 second lead, the order staying the same behind him, so he was on his way to a comfortable win.

All points result for the day: 1. Kevin Coombes 2. Zammit 3. Bideleux

Junior National Heavy

Jordan Poxon P1, then Matthew Lane, Jason Kay, Justin Carless and James Mastorakis making up the top 5 of Junior Heavy. Lane then Carless the best of them at the start, Dylan O’Keefe and Edward Brown slotting into 3rd and 4th. Lane spun at Tony Kart on lap 2 handing Carless the lead but O’Keefe was right on his crash bar as Lane rejoined in 11th. O’Keefe passed Carless for the lead on Lap 4 at JSKC. Brown also got under Carless, further back Mastorakis and then Poxon coming back from a poor start. O’Keefe took a comfortable win in the end from Carless, Brown, Poxon, Mastorakis and the recovering Lane.

Todd Sparey then O’Keefe, Carless and Kyle Hunt as they began Heat 2. Sparey losing his nosecone 2 laps in so Mastorakis through to 3rd as Poxon also got past Kyle Hunt, then Jake Paterson and Nicholas Floodstrom. With 4 to go it’s all O’Keefe from Carless and then closer together Mastorakis and Poxon in 3rd and 4th with Poxon going through to 3rd a lap later and that’s how they finished.

O’Keefe, Carless, Poxon, Mastorakis, Brown and Lane made up the first 3 rows of Heat 3 Junior National Heavy. Carless got ahead of O’Keefe at the green then Mastorakis and Poxon but Mastorakis dropped well back in an incident I did not see, while O’Keefe worked his way back to the lead from Carless, Poxon, Lane, Brown and Kyle Hunt, then the recovering Mastorakis. With 5 to go the front 3 were close together and had a slight gap on Lane in 4th. Soon they were as one – all 4 of them side by side at various stages, but still O’Keefe out front – then Carless under him at JSKC, Poxon through too, then Lane into 3rd – just as quick O’Keefe back to 2nd, Lane 3rd and Poxon 4th. Last lap O’Keefe under Carless into the Dipper, but Carless straight back at him at Grid Corner and took the chequered, Poxon 3rd, Lane 4th, Brown 5th – 1st to 5th covered by 7 tenths of a second!! What a finish

All points result for the day: 1. O’Keefe 2. Carless 3. Poxon

Clubman Heavy / Clubman Super Heavy

Kevin Nicholls off Pole in Clubman Heavy, Mark Hunt in Super Heavy, but Wayne Bourke through in Heavy to the lead on Lap 1 followed by David Dvorak and Lachlan Citrine – Super Heavy was Malcolm Hunt then Mark Hunt, Steve Polak and Lincoln O’Connor. Bourke motored steadily away from Dvorak who was being caught by Citrine, and Chris Thomas was also working his way onto the back of them, while Mal Hunt was doing well to be right up amongst the Heavy competitors and leading Super Heavy. With 3 to go Thomas into 3rd and half a lap later into 2nd getting under Dvorak in the Dipper. Citrine and Thomas Martin also made their way through but Bourke well clear in front and took a comfortable win from Thomas, Citrine, and Martin. Super Heavys led home by Mal Hunt, then Mark Hunt and Polak.

Thomas Martin and Chris Thomas the leaders in Heavy after a lap, Mal Hunt and Mark Hunt in Super Heavy. Wayne Bourke worked his way through to 3rd and began closing on the leaders, while Citrine was 4th then Bruce De Carvallo in 5th. When Thomas and Martin touched at JSKC with 5 to go, Bourke pounced for the lead, and then Martin and Thomas finished it off next corner with both of them into the dirt and out of the race. This allowed Citrine through to 2nd, Anthony Westaway 3rd. In Supers still Mal Hunt, Mark Hunt them Polak.

Heat 3, Bourke the leader in Heavy from Citrine and Thomas, and Mark Hunt the first Super Heavy leading Mal Hunt then O’Connor and Polak. From then on not much changed, other than all competitors getting further apart, and Bourke took a comfortable win in Heavy, Mark Hunt the same in Super Heavy

All points result for the day Clubman Heavy: 1. Bourke 2. Citrine 3. Westaway

All points result for the day Clubman Super Heavy: 1. Mal Hunt 2. Mark Hunt 3. Polak

Junior National Light

Fastest Qualifier in this month’s Feature Class, Junior National Light, was Damon Strongman then Luke Guillou, Nicholas Steel and Lucas Filikotzias. Strongman lead them away and Steel through to 2nd, but Guillou back under him before they completed a lap, then Filikotzias, Cody Donald, Nicholas Sims and James Westaway. The blue plate of Strongman looked like disappearing out front for a few laps, but then Guillou started to come on and the gap was back to under a second with 6 to go. By halfway light rain had started to fall and while it wasn’t quite the weather for wets just yet, karts were pirouetting around the track on slicks. Guillou closed rapidly on Strongman while Steel found himself all alone in 3rd as Filikotzias dropped well back. Guillou swept past Strongman at MKC corner with 2 to go, but Strongman back under him at the Dipper as both leaned out of their seats trying to get some grip from the slippery SL1’s. As the shower eased Strongman held on for a win, then Guillou and Steel hanging on for 3rd from Filikotzias.

Heat 2 and Strongman and Guillou got clear of Steel, then Filikotzias and Nicholas Sims. Guillou got under Strongman but Strongman was equal to the task and back to the lead soon after, but not by a lot. By halfway they were swapping spots a few times a lap but Strongman still the leader once they sorted things out. As they started the last lap Guillou under Strongman at Arrow corner, but Strongman back past him into the Dipper and held on by half a tenth at the end, Steel in 3rd.

The Final for the Feature Class this month had Strongman off pole – having won both heats – then Guillou, Steel, and Filikotzias. Guillou was not going to let Strongman drive away and followed him closely through the first few laps, but it looked like the winner would come from these two as Steel, Sims, Filikotzias and Westaway were already dropping back, although Steel was not out of it if they began dicing. Guillou got to the lead on Lap 4 but Strongman back under him at Tony Kart then Guillou under him again at Grid Corner – just what Steel wanted, but they were still well up the road. Lap 6 and Strongman through at Arrow corner; Guillou tried the same a lap later but didn’t pull it off. All the while Steel was still back in 3rd and Filikotzias close behind in 4th. Guillou made it stick at Arrow a lap later, but Strongman straight back under him at JSKC. Three to go and Guillou back to the lead at Arrow and Strongman couldn’t get it back quite so quickly. Last lap began with Filikotzias passing Steel at JSKC for 3rd. Meanwhile Guillou and Strongman put on a great performance in the final lap, Strongman keeping narrow and holding Guillou off by 3/100ths in the end – a great dice and a credit to both drivers that they pulled it off without a major touch.

1. Strongman 2. Guillou 3. Filikotzias