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The latest rounds of the Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge at Te Puke were real game changers.

Round 3 Saturday

The young guns stepped up at Round 3 of the Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge at Te Puke on Saturday providing close racing starting with Auckland’s Callum Hedge snatching pole position by 0.019 from Sam Wright. GG17RMCRnd3BoPJunRotaxCallumHedgelr-1.jpg

Hedge then went on to dominate the heat racing until Ryan Wood stepped up to take the Pre Final win from Hedge, Wright and Ashton Grant. 

Hedge and Wood managed to run away from the field in the Final race leaving Wright having a rather lonely race. 

The rest of the field had close racing with lots of passing going on from all the drivers. 

The new push back nose cone caught a few out today but it sure looked like it will be a promising improvement for the class. 
Two young drivers who stood out today was Connor Davison who qualified 11th finishing fifth and Zac Stichbury gettingGG17RMCRnd3BoPDD2DanielBraylr-1.jpg excluded from qualifying but finishing sixth in the Final.

Manawatu’s Michael McCulloch grabbed pole position in Rotax Lights over Jacob Cranston, Corey Green and Josh Hart. 
McCulloch, Cranston, Hart and Green changed positions all day but Bay of Plenty’s Corey Green was  able to take out the Final from Cranston and Sebastian Noble.
N-ZED Motorsport driver Daniel Bray was unstoppable today having a perfect day to dominate the DD2 class, with fellow Aucklanders Jono Buxeda and CJ Sinclair the next best, Sinclair taking second and Buxeda claimed third in the Final. 
Female racer Tiffany Chittenden took pole position over Ryan Urban and Fraser Hart in DD2 Masters but it was Manawatu’s Hart who took the win in the Final from Chittenden and Urban.GG17RMCRnd3LightsCoreyGreenlr-1.jpg
David Malcom, Garry Claxton and Tim Wakefield took the top three qualifying positions in DD2 Super Masters with heats winner Malcolm also able to hold off Warren Parris and Gary Claxton to take the win in the Final. 
Action in the Bay of Plenty continues in Sunday with the fourth round of the Giltrap Group-backed Rotax Max series.

Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge class winners at Te Puke on Saturday included Callum Hedge (#2 Junior Rotax), Daniel Bray (DD2) and Corey Green (Rotax Light).  Photo credit: Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge/Emilee Jane Photography

Round 4 Sunday

In the Rotax Junior class Ryan Wood from Wellington took pole position with a time of 35.306 from on-form Auckland pair Callum Hedge and Ashton Grant, and emerging second-generation racer Zac Stichbury from the Hawke's Bay,GG17RMCRnd4RotLightSebastianNobleEW-1.jpg thelatter repeating the form he showed at the third series round on Saturday. 

The heat racing results had various drivers take the top positions with Wood winning the first heat from Stichbury and Aucklanders Josh Parkinson and Sam Wright. Callum Hedge came back to win the second heat from Sodi teammates Ashton Grant and Joshua Parkinson, while Ashton Grant stepped up to take out the Final by 5.1 seconds from Manawatu’s Jackson Rooney and top female racer Rianna O’Meara Hunt from Wellington.

Two young drivers, meanwhile, who made progress all day Sunday and finished inside the top 10 were N-Zed Motorsport team driver Joshua Richmond and Manawatu’s Riley Jack. Zac Stichbury also capped off a great day with a new class track lap record in the Final with a time of 35.430. 

In the Rotax Max Light class Michael McCulloch from the Kapiti Coast backed up his pole position at the third series roundGG17RMCRnd4RotJnrAshtonGrantEWlr-1.jpg on Saturday with another pole position at the fourth round on Sunday from Hamilton’s Sebastian Noble and Manawatu’s John Wallace. 

It was Jacob Cranston from Palmerston North who proved to be the dominant driver in the races, however, taking out both heats, the Pre final and Final. Sebastian Noble stepped up to finish second in the Final with newly crowned Toyota 86 Racing Series champion Ryan Yardley grabbing third on a successful return to his karting roots.

WKS Kartstore driver CJ Sinclair claimed pole position in DD2 over Jonathan Buxeda and Josh Hart. Tiffany Chittenden also backed up her pole position over Fraser Hart and Kali Orr in DD2 Masters while David Malcolm, Warren Parris and Gary Claxton were the top three Super Masters.

Pole man CJ Sinclair also proved to be the dominant driver in the DD2 field taking out the final by 4.6 seconds over17GGRMCR4TePukeDD2MastersFraserHart-1.jpg Jonathan Buxeda and Ayden Polaschek. 

WKS Kartstore team DD2 Masters class rep Tiffany Chittenden took out both heat racers over Manawatu’s Fraser Hart and Kali Orr but Fraser Hart was dominant in the Pre Final and Final.

Praga kart driver Ryan Urban was excluded from Qualifying but managed to finish second DD2 Master home in the Final ahead of Tiffany Chittenden. 

Finally, David Malcolm and N-Zed Motorsport team driver Gary Claxton shared Super Masters honours in the heat races with Malcom leading home Claxton and Warren Parris in the Final. 

CAPTIONS: Drivers to feature at the game-changing fourth round of the Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge class winners at Te Puke on Sunday included Sebastian Noble  (#6 Rotax Light), David Malcolm (#86 DD2 Masters) and Ashton Grant (#27 Junior Rotax). Photo credit: Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge/Emilee Jane Photography and Fraser Hart (#69 DD2 Masters) Photo credit: Fast CompanyGraham Hughes

2017 Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge

 Points after Rnd 4 of 8

Rotax DD2
1. CJ Sinclair 342 points; 2. Jonathan Buxeda 327; 3. Ayden Polaschek 320; 4. Hayden Jackson 309; 5. Daniel Bray 272;GG17RMCRnd4DD2MastersDaveMalcolmEWlr-1.jpg 6. Bond Roby 270.

DD2 Masters (Provisional)
1. Ryan Urban 352 points; 2.  Tiffany Chittenden 342; 3. David Malcolm 334 (best Super Master); 4. James Smith 325; 5. Warren Parris 323; 6. Garry Claxton 323.

Rotax Light
1. Jacob Cranston 356 points; 2. Michael  McCulloch 333; 3. John Wallace 312; 4. Josh Hart 176; 5. Corey Green 168; 6. Sebastian Noble 168.

Rotax Junior
1. Rianna O'Meara-Hunt 337 points; 2. Ashton Grant 328; 3.  Joshua Parkinson 318; 4. Callum Hedge 317; 5. Sam Wright 311; 6. Jackson Rooney 302.

2017 Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge Calendar

Rnds 1 & 2: Sat- Sun Feb 18-19 Manawatu Toyota Raceway, Palmerston North
Rnds 3 & 4: Sat-Sun March 18-19 Te Puke Auto Electrical Raceway, Te Puke
Rnds 5 & 6: Sat-Sun May 20-21 KartSport Rotorua International Raceway, Mamaku, Rotorua
Rnds 7 & 8: Sat-Sun Aug 12 & 13 AgriSea Raceway, Hamilton

2017 Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals: November 04-11 2017 Portimao Portugal


Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of KartSport New Zealand. To find out more about the 2017 Giltrap Group New Zealand Rotax Max Challenge contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or via e-mail at

KartSport New Zealand