SMYTH HAS THE PACE
BUT BRAY WINS THE RACE

 

Series returnee Graeme Smyth had the pace but it was early season standout Daniel Bray who won an all-action KZ2 class final at the third round of this year's ProKart Series at Hamilton on Sunday.141ProKartSeriesR3HamKZ2RestDanielBray-1.jpg

 

After missing the first round of the series and having mechanical issues at the second, Smyth had ground to make up. Make it up he did, though, qualifying quickest and setting a new KZ2 class lap record on his way to winning the first heat.

 

He won the second as well, bounced back to win the Pre Final after a mechanical dnf in the third heat, then led all but four laps of the Final before - literally - being pipped by fellow Aucklander Bray at the post.

 

The margin was less than a kart length - just 0.035 of a second - but it was more than enough for Bray, who has now won his class at all three ProKart Series rounds held so far this year and has a 20 point lead in the series points standings at the half-way point over Rangiora's Chris Cox.

 

"I got a better run onto the start/finish straight and crossed Graeme over as I went up the hill," he said this morning. "Normally you've got to brake for the first corner at Hamilton before the start/finish line but this time I didn't - or at least I didn't till I saw Graeme brake - and that's what made the difference.

 

"I still managed to pull it up in time but it was close."

 

With points from all races counting, Smyth's dnf (did not finish) in the third cost him two places in the round points standings with consistent Rangiora driver Chris Cox second, Gold Coast-based Jaxon Evans third, Smyth fourth and class young guns Mitch Osborne and Luke Dobbs fifth and sixth respectively.

 

Cox and Evans were also close in the KZ2 Final, with Evans closing down Cox's early lead but unable to find a way past - despite the gap at the finishing line being down to just 0.168 of a second!

 

There was a numbers boost, meanwhile, for the new KZ2 Restricted class with one of the newcomers, Aucklander Jared McKenzie, winning three of the five races - including the Final - but round victory still going to ever consistent early season pace-setter Garry Cullum, from McKenzie, Connor Adam, Gerhard Benadie, and new class lap record holder, Steve Brown.

 

Finally, former class champion Tom Curran from the Hawke's Bay again proved the man to beat in KZ2 Masters.14ProKartSeriesR3HamKZ2MastersTomCurran-1.jpg

 

Curran qualified quickest and won all five class races -  despite the best efforts of Aucklanders Mark Lane and Leo Bult who claimed the other podium positions for the round.

 

Fast-improving ex Stockcar ace Graeme Lambert from Mangakino, also had another impressive weekend, qualifying fourth quickest and claiming a best finish of second in the Pre-Final.

 

The weekend's ProKart Series round was the third of six with KartSport Bay of Plenty hosting the fifth at Fagan's Valley Raceway neat Te Puke over the June 07/08 weekend.

 

CAPTIONS:

Impressing at the ProKart Series round in Hamilton over the weekend were Finals winners Daniel Bray (#2 KZ2) from Auckland and Tom Curran (#7 KZ2 Masters) from Hastings. Photo credit: Fast Company/Graham Hughes

 

2014 Pro Kart Series Rnd 3 Agrisea Raceway Hamilton Sat-Sun May 17-18

KZ2

Round result
1. Daniel Bray (MtW); 2. Chris Cox (ChCh); 3. Jaxon Evans (Aust); 4. Graeme Smyth (Ak); 5. Mitch Osborne (Ak); 6. Luke Dobbs (MtW)

Points after Rnd 3
1. Daniel Bray 245; 2. Chris Cox 225; 3. Jaxon Evans 223; 4=. Luke Dobbs 217; 4=. Mitch Osborne 217; 6. Mitch Brown 213
   

KZ2 Restricted

Round result

1. Garry Cullum (Ak); 2. Jared McKenzie (Ak); 3. Connor Adam (Ak); 4. Gerhard Benadie (Ak); 5. Steve Brown (Mkau); 6. Troy Hopkinson (MtW).

Points after Rnd 3

1. Garry Cullum 243 points; 2. Gerhard Benadie 227; 3. Steve Brown 225; 4. Cameron Dance 219; 5. Tommie Benadie 216; 6. Jared McKenzie 78  

 

KZ2 Masters

Round result

1. Tom Curran (HB); 2. Mark Lane (Ak); 3. Leo Bult (Mkau); 4. Grant Kugener (Nel); 5. Kevan Storr (Mkau); 6. Graeme Lambert (Tok).

Points after Rnd 3
1. Tom Curran 246  points; 2. Mark Lane 228; 3. Kevan Storr 223; 4. Graeme Lambert 220; 5. Grant Kugener 219; 6. Garry Claxton 215
         

Calendar
Rnd 1: Sun Feb 22-23 Manawatu Toyota Raceway Palmerston North

Rnd 2: Sat-Sun March 15-16 The Rock FM Raceway Rotorua

Rnd 3: Sat-Sun May 17-18 AgriSea Raceway Hamilton

Rnd 4: Sat-Sun June 07-08 Fagan's Valley Raceway Te Puke

Rnd 5: Sat-Sun August 16-17 Chemz Raceway Hastings

Rnd 6: Sat-Sun September 20-21 Strata Networks Raceway Auckland


Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of KartSport New Zealand. To find out more about the 2014 New Zealand ProKart Series contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or via e-mail at ross@fastcompany.co.nz

 

 

 
KartSport New Zealand