CROSS LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT
TRANS-TASMAN KARTING TRIP ALREADY

Young Kiwi karter Caleb Cross has already asked his father Hamish when he can return to Australia to race after a strong trans-Tasman debut at the annual Queensland State Titles meeting at Bundaberg  over the weekend. 13QueenslandStateKartTitles-CalebCrossleadinggroup-2 (2).jpg

Cross, 12, from Rangiora, got as high as sixth in the Junior National Light class Final on Sunday before being sent spinning off the track by the driver he had just passed, but took heart from the fact that the driver, Shaun Costello, ended up third behind class winner William Brown and runner-up Reece Sidebottom.

"We were all a bit gutted when it happened," said Caleb's father, former New Zealand kart and car racing champion Hamish,"but when he came in Caleb was like, 'what's the next meeting we can do here Dad?"

As well as his father, Caleb was accompanied on the trip by multi-time New Zealand kart champion Matthew Hamilton from Christchurch and long-time family friend and assistant to both Hamish and now Caleb, Graham Wehner.

Having himself raced all over the world Hamilton was full of praise for Caleb's efforts, especially early on in the weekend when the youngster not only had to learn a new track but also a new class and a new control tyre.

"It was an awesome effort, really," Hamilton said this morning. "For a start he was the youngest driver there because the age-group of the class we were running in was effectively the same as our Junior one at home. The karts are also a lot harder to drive because the tyre they run here (in Australia) doesn't have as much grip as the ones Caleb is used to in New Zealand."

It was unfamiliarity with the tyre that saw the youngster slip back after top 10 times in practice to qualify just outside the top 20 (out of 34) but each time he went out he improved, going from P21 on the grid to 14 in the first heat then from P21 to 14 in the second.

He then worked his way from P14 to 10th in the Pre-Final and was already up to sixth place in the Final (from P10 on the grid) after just two laps when he was pushed off the track.

And while he would have preferred if  Caleb had been able to continue moving forward in the Final, his father said that the incident was all part of the learning experience for his talented and determined son.

"We came here and entered a class up (Junior National Light) because we wanted to expose Caleb to a greater depth of competition than he can get at home and that's exactly what we got. We've got some good drivers at home, no doubt about that, what we don't have is the depth they do in Aussie."

The next big event for the Cross family is the Armstrong Motor Group-backed KartSport New Zealand Schools' Championship in Christchurch over the July 20-21 weekend in which Caleb will team up with fellow young gun Marcus Armstrong to try and win the Primary/Intermediate title for Christchurch's Medbury School.

 CAPTION:
Reigning New Zealand Junior Restricted 100cc Yamaha class champion Caleb Cross (#66) fighting for position in one of the Junior National Light class races at the Queensland State Titles meeting at Bundaberg in northern Queensland on Sunday. Photo credit: Fast Company/Ash Budd

Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of Caleb Cross. For more information on Caleb contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919
or via e-mail at
ross@fastcompany.co.nz 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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