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Kiwi ROK class karters Jackson Rooney, Liam Sceats and Kaden Probst might not have got the results they were hoping for at the 32nd City of Melbourne Titles meeting at the Kart Club of Victoria's Todd Road kart track in Melbourne over the weekend. But the lessons they learned are set to stand them in good stead.16GOldStarRnd4VorMiniRokJacksonRooneyleads-1.jpg

Rooney, 12, from Palmerston North, and Sceats, 10, from Auckland, earned the right to compete at the meeting by winning their respective classes (Rooney Vortex Mini ROK, Sceats Cadet ROK) at the 2015/16 Bayleys WPKA Goldstar Series. Probst, 10, from Auckland, took the opportunity to join the pair at the big Melbourne meeting after winning the Cadet ROK class at the recent CRC Speedshow Top Half series.

As it turned out, however, Rooney was the only one of the three to finish the Cadet 12 class Final after both Sceats and Probst were eliminated early on in incidents not of their making.

"It was frustrating in that results-wise it didn't quite go our way," admitted Rooney's father Chris, "but at the same time, in terms of the experience we all gained, it was a really valuable race weekend."

With a 'no-practice-on-school-days' rule in force in Australia, the three Kiwis had only two sessions on Saturday morning to learn the Todd Road track before qualifying, with Probst getting even less time when his kart's clutch broke.

Sceats and Rooney qualified 23rd and 24th respectively, with Probst a little further back in 27th.

"The problem on Saturday," said Jackson's father Chris, "was that what practise the boys got to do was on a wet track so it was a bit of a struggle not knowing what gearing and set-up for qualifying when the track was dry."

As it turned out the Rooneys also ended up chasing engine issues all weekend, with a lack of top end speed in one motor and a fuel issue in another.16GoldStarR2CadetROKLiamSceats23leadsLouisSharpSIandLoganManson16-1.jpg

After a good drive from P24 to 16th in the first heat Jackson failed to finish the second after crashing trying to avoid a multi-kart pile-up on the first lap, then ended up struggling with the fuel starvation issue in the Pre-Final and finishing 31st.

The fuel issue came back late in the Final too, but only after the young Kiwi had worked his way from P32 (on the last row of the grid) to 14th. With his kart slowing he slipped back down through the pack but managed to hang on to 18th place to the flag.

After qualifying 23rd and working his way forward in both heats, to 15th in the first and 17th in the second, Liam Sceats got as high as 10th before being slotted back to 18th (as he slowed to try and avoid an accident) in the Pre-Final, and was the innocent victim of a multi-kart pile-up on the first lap of the Final.

Not quite the result father or son wanted, but Liam's father Simon says there definitely was an upside.16TopHalfRnd4CadetROKKadenProbst2.jpg

"Our ambition before the meeting was to get into the top ten and we did that in the Pre-Final. We also managed to get down to the lap time target we set ourselves and in the last few laps of the Pre-Final we were right there." 

While at 12 years of age Jackson Rooney will soon be moving up a class, 10-year-olds Sceats and Probst will be back in Cadet 12 class karts at Todd Road in September contesting the final round of this year's Australian Karting Championships.

At the City of Melbourne titles meeting Liam Sceats and Jackson Rooney raced brand new Tony Karts with Mini ROK engines supplied and run by the Tony Kart Australia team as part of a prize pack put together by New Zealand Tony Kart and ROK importer Supreme Kart Supplies & Engines and Manawatu Toyota.

Kaden Probst joined them in the Cadet 12 class in a kart run by the Shamick Racing squad

CAPTIONS: Jackson Rooney (#30) and Liam Sceats (# 23) (Photo credit: Fast Company/Vicky Jack) and Kaden Probst (#2) (Photo credit: Fast Company/Ross MacKay) racing in New Zealand before their weekend trip to Australia.


Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of KartSport New Zealand. To find out more about KartSport in New Zealand contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or via e-mail at ross@fastcompany.co.nz







KartSport New Zealand