2009 National Sprint Kart Titles

The boys have got the laptop setup trackside in Townsville, to bring you all the action from the 2009 nationals as it happens.

 

Clubman Light Final 12-04-09 3:30pm

1st: Ben Stewart

2nd: Adam Hughes

3rd: Dave Sera

Well another second!

This one was hard fought and well deserved, having not got the best start, Dave, Fothergill and Ben Stewart generated a handy gap.

Hughesy battled with Mclaughlin early on and was able to clear him after about four laps and start hunting down the front three. His pace was equal too the train ahead, but with three guys working together here, it is very hard to catch them on your own.

Sitting about 1 second of the pack, adam said "I new it would go down on the last lap, i was happy to be with in striking distance with one to go".

And go down it did... with two attempts by Fothergill to pass Dave, Adam was right on their crashbar going into the last corner.

The first three drove up the inside trying to block, so Hughesy decided to stay wide, and try the switch back.

Pulling of one of the moves of the weekend, adam got the run down the straight and drove past Fothergil and Dave to finish second, behind Stewart.

 

 

Leopard Light Final 12-04-09 12:00am

1st: Tyler Greenbury

2nd: Adam Hughes

3rd: Dave Sera

Well it didn't quite come off this morning, we would of liked the win but second is still a great effort.

Rain started falling very lightly as they where sitting on the grid, no where near enough to change tyre, but enough to be annoying.

Light rain turned to moderate during the roll around's, before it stopped on about lap three. This created a fairly hairy start and a slippery first few laps.

As most of the front runners took to the inside at the start, Tyler took the gamble and went outside, wide, and fast. Sweeping around Adam, Dave and Phil King to take the lead.

From there he set about building a gap over the first few greasy laps, getting out to 2.6 seconds ahead.

As the track dryed and lap times reverted to normal, Adam and Dave started reeling him in, .2 a lap but never quite got there.

With adam managing to drop dave with two laps to go and hang on for second.

 

Now our attention turns to this afternoons clubman final.

 

Within striking distance ! 11-04-09 5:00pm

All prefinals where concluded this afternoon, and lady luck could hold out no more, with the heavens opening just before Leopard Light.

With the entire field on wets and not having an opportunity to carry out any wet weather testing during the week, the setups where all a bit of a gamble.

We decided to leave the third bearing in, which we haven't previously ran in the wet, but where hoping it would suit this track.

Unfortunately Adam said it just killed the drive of the turn and made it hard to stay with the other quick guys.

He was able to run in second behind dave for about half distance, before Phil King and Greenbury slipped by in the dieing laps.

So starting fourth for the Leopard Light Australian Championship Final, we are definitely in with a shot.

 

In Clubman Light the dry, but greasy, conditions played right into Dave Sera's hands, starting of pole he was never headed to the line.

Hughesy held out second place until mid race when fastest qualifier, Cian Fothergill, went past.

With allot of daylight back to fourth, he was able to cruise to the line to take Grid three for the final.

 

We are pretty happy with the results so far, but when it comes it comes down to it, we came here for one thing, that little green piece of plastic.

Here's hoping for tomorrow.

 

Heat two a success! 11-04-09 1:00pm

The second heats this morning have been run and won... by us!!

Well thats not quite true, we only got 2nd in the Clubman, but it was as good as a win for us at the time.

It had been pouring rain for the races before but, as we learnt in practice, this place dries fast.

Sitting on the grid everyone was on wets, but timing the race before, we wanted slicks.

After we had made the first call a few others followed, leaving Hughesy, Dave, Mclaughlin and Lydon Dodge the risk takers on slicks.

With dave starting third, and conditions absolutely made for him, he managed to jump straight to the front and get a gap, Adam had to fight his way through the people with wets and managed to slot nicely in behind dave in second.

The two of them clearing out to take first and second over Mclaughlin a distant third.

 

The Leopard was a much simpler affair, with a similar start to Heat one, Hughesy had chase down Greenbury in the lead and with three laps to go made his move down the straight.

Greenbury was able to stay in the toe for one lap but it didn't take Hughesy long to break him and drive away to a winning margin.

 

With a 2nd and 1st in Leopard, and a 5th and 2nd in the Clubman, we are grided on P2 for both classes this afternoon.

Stay tuned for prefinal results tonight!

 

Racing finally commences! 10-4-09 7:00pm

Well, we've been here for five days and its all been building to this. Racing at the nationals!

Heat one in the leopard went pretty good. With the corner onto the straight a very tight hairpin with a kick back on exit, the starts have been pretty messy, definitely favoring the inside.

This allowed pole man Greenbury a couple kart length gap over Hughesy in second. Adam worked hard and drove great to get right back onto the rear crash bar of Greenbury and had just managed to get into his tow as the checkered came out. A few more laps or an even start and we coulda had it!

 

Clubman light heat 1, and not such a successful first lap. Hughesy got an OK start from seventh but got a knock from behind right in the middle of the flat out turn one, pushing him wide through the turn two hairpin.

After dropping back to 10th, he really had to settle down into a rhythm and start picking them off, Which he did. Catching and passing guys like robinson and Ben Stewart on is way back to fifth.

Its not a win, but given circumstances we are pretty happy with today's results.

 

To add a little more good news to the mix, Monaco big man Remo Luciani supervised everyone, including himself, to win Heat one of clubman heavy.

While getting ready for the race there was a quick rain shower, so Remo decided to narrow the rear track right up, expecting a storm which didn't come.

However having such a narrow rear track allowed him to shoot through the front pack while the others where sliding and battling on the greasy track.

He got himself about a 3 second gap before clubman heavy stalwart, Jason Hynruik, started pegging him in. But he didn't quite have enough, with the Chief hanging on for an awesome win, showing the younger blokes just how to do it.

 

So far, so good 10-4-09 1:00pm

Day one of official business has started, with two qualifying rounds having just been completed for all classes. And overall, we are pretty happy so far.

In the Leopard, Hughesy was second fastest in the first session clocking a 44.597. This was .19 tenths behind provisional pole sitter, Tyler Greenbury with a 44.426.

Third place was John Grother, with MKC Engines/kosmic driver Kingy, fourth and Nelson rounding out the top five.

The second leopard qualy session went one better, with adam setting the fastest lap time. However all times from this session where slower then the first, so we officially qualified in second position.

Not a bad effort and the second session is a great indicator of true race pace.

 

In the clubman its not quite such a good story, having run new tyres yesterday we where confident we could be right up the front come Q1. In today's first session we where seventh fastest, at first we where a little disappointed with this.

How ever if you ignore pole sitter, Cian Fothergills time of 46.727, then we are only one tenth of second place Tyler Greenbury who managed a 46.943.

The second session was a little better, and although we remain seventh overall, we where pleased to close the gap on the faster guys by about a tenth, and as in the leopard, show a true indication of race pace.

 

They are planning on running a full round of heats this arvo as well, and i think they just called leopard so i better scoot off!

 

"Hey mate, what axle YOU runnin?" 9-4-09 9:00pm

As you can guess, today was all about axles, setting up for this track is hard! In clubman light it's hard to stay at the front but right now weve got the MKC Monaco sniffing at the pace.

The grip levels here are quite changable and so you have to have the right chunk of hollow steel slammed in the back to be fast all session long.

For us gearing and pipe length are about right, we've played around and tried many combinations and have now settled happy.

The big question mark for everybody is how fast can we go on new tyers at the same time.

Clubman light is more wide open then any nationals over the past ten years.

 

Now to leopard light and our bloke Hughesy got the job done today.

Fresh tyres, our number two engine and our best carby shot us to the top of the time sheets.

Adam should really be on target tommorow morning and still be at the pointy end come Sunday.

 

...so whos on the pole then?

Sitting around at dinner tonight, we decided to slip you our, beer fed, Pole Position predictions.

Junior Clubman: Chris Hayes has been the pace all week, but my prediction is for Jurzack to pop up with the pole.

Clubman Light: Hughesy (or Dave Sera)

Clubman Heavy: Shayne Piper

Clubman Super Heavy: Ryno or Scottie Simpson (this one is hard to pick)

Leopard Light: Hughesy

Leopard Heavy: Brad Belcher

 

Things get tough at Townsville 8-4-09 8:00pm

The action really started to heat up at Townsville today, with the true meaning of 'The Nationals' starting to shine through.

Just about all of the country's best drivers are now here, and turning some very impressive laps. Anyone thinking this race meeting was going to be easy was in for a tough surprise.

 

Having said that, we are very pleased with our progress in both Leopard and Clubman today. The club managed the day superbly and was able to get five full rounds of practice in, which gave us plenty of time to get things done.

The usual big names have been fast, then slow, then fast, and some not so big names have been fast, then slow, then fast. With two clubman groups at different times and lots of people trying different things, it's pretty hard to tell where everyone is really at, but we've still got plenty to come, and with lots of new tyers to be used in tomorrow's final practice day I'm sure the bigger picture will start to unfold.

 

Bring it on!

 

Hot track and hot times at Townsville! 7-4-09 10:00pm

At 9am this morning the karts hit the track at Townsville and many top drivers started to get dialed in. Guys like Hynruik, Belcher, Kingy, Luciani, Piper and others were zooming around. Our guy Hughesy wasn't there yet. His plane was late. So the MKC team set up their pits to luxury, well, cozy, well not bad status. We got fans, a tool cupboard and enough creature comforts to get the job done.

 

 

Adding some excitement to today was the arrival of Hughesy, with the new Hughesy Helmet. Having only picked it up from Krals Creations on the Monday night before Tuesdays 9am flight, you could still smell the paint when he removed it from the bag!

Adam was all too happy to show it off and its no surprise why!

 

This is something to get used to seeing up the front!

 

We missed the first timed lap that Hughesy put in driving the Clubman kart. But the rest were pretty nice. We used our number 5 engine to go well up the lap time order and so things are looking pretty good right now.

 

But 5 minutes ago, bang! crash! lightening! and rain, rain rain. Here at MKC's hotel it's "pie song" wet. So who knows what tomorrow will bring.

 

 

"She'll be right, She'll be right" 6-4-09 10:00pm

The MKC Team has arrived in townsville today. Rock stars Rog and Josh arrived by private jet while the roadies arrived by bus (otherwise known as the MKC diesel van).

Our driver Paul Griffiths assured us the trip went smoothly, however talking to co-driver Trev he told a different story.

 

"Roger told us when the fuel light comes on there is only 40km left" he said, to which paul replied "she'll be right, she'll be right". This response of course meant Paul was the one walking back to the farm house, jerry can under arm, pleading for some diesel!

Luckily they stumbled across a lovely lady that was all too helpful.

Tonight we met up with the Hughes' and a solid meal was on the menu. Three cows, eight fish and most of Tassies' potatoes are now gone, and there might be a little bit of beer missing too!

 

Ian would kill for a few more ribs!

 

We also stopped in at the Townsville track this arvo to find our spot and drop the tent off. The members here have really out-done themselves. The place is looking stunning. Little attention to details including several air lines spread throughout the pits, bead breakers and tyre cages at every corner are great ideas. There is even a sink right in the middle of the pits to wash your hands! Needless to say we are all very excited to get in there tomorrow morning to setup the pits in anticipation of MKC driver, Adam Hughes arriving for a few initial laps in the afternoon.

 

We might of only been here for 12 hours, but its clear already, this nationals is going to be SMOKIN!