Saturday, January 22, 2011
The sleeper has awoken!
Superstock World 240's
Paradise Valley Raceway, Rotorua
It took until the repercharge on night two, but for me, it finally felt like the 2010/11 season had woken up and roared back to life. Welcome back and what a fantastic race! Massive hits, great side by side racing, instant retribution and a great finish. Up until this point the last few weeks have just seemed to slide by with some of the sure-fire big meetings really just a bit too flat for my liking. That repercharge was followed up by a great first heat for the 240 title and the evening just hummed along from there.
Friday's qualifying, like so many meetings lately, was fairly ordinary and the field was smaller than I had expected but quality was not missing with the current 1, 2 and 3nz in attendance. Quite a few of the usual suspects failed to qualify for various reasons which brought together that fantastic repercharge on night two with Dale Robertson and Mark Osborne grabbing the last two places. The three heat wins on Saturday night went to 7p Shane Penn, 32p Graeme Barr and 515r Stan Hickey taking out the last one in his final race - a fitting tribute. A full review is available on the Rotorua website but the end result of the nights racing left 3nz Peter Rees and 2nz Scott Joblin tied for first requiring a run-off. A rather dramatic ending to the night when a wheel sheared off the Joblin car and bounced into the crowd, halting the four lap race for some time before Rees claimed the outright title. A pretty amazing few weeks for the Palmerston North driver who has claimed the 3nz Superstock title, came 2nd at the Superstock GP, 2nz Stockcar title, 1st at the World 240s and a member of the winning Pumas team at the Stockcar Teams title with the Superstock Teams meeting still to come...
32p Graeme Barr managed 3rd place after leading on points going into the final heat, a small matter of 21 years between podiums at this event, quite an achievement too. The complete domination of Palmerston North cars left Stan Hickey as the first non-Palmy car in 6th place. Support on the night featured a teams race that finally brought the Rotorua Rascals back out of hibernation. Looking a bit rusty and in danger of a beating after the first few laps, they clawed back a valiant Gisborne side and took a decent win. Lets hope we see more of this team this season.
On a personal note, I took someone along to the meeting who hadn't been to Rotorua for about five years and was completely astounded at the changes and improvements at the track. Something I just take for granted now, it was funny seeing their reaction to how different the place looked and how impressive it now is. I will put up a separate posting mid-week with shots of the teams cars and the Rotorua Stockcars that were in attendance - an awesome display put on by this class too.
3nz Peter Rees 66pts
2nz Scott Joblin 66pts
32p Graeme Barr 62pts
7p Shane Penn 61pts
58p Peter Bengston 60pts
515r Stan Hickey 57pts
55uk Frankie Wainmarn Jnr 56pts
Meeting rating : 8/10