New Plymouth youngster Thomas Boniface enjoyed a winning start to his first kart campaign across the Tasman over the weekend.


Competing at the Oakleigh Go Kart Racing Club's annual two-day Junior Top Guns meeting at Melbourne's Oakleigh kart track the nine-year-old from New Plymouth was the top Cadet class qualifier (out of a field of 47) on both days and after finishing third in each heat won the first day (Friday) Final from top local driver George Gower.13AustTopGunJnrmeetingThomasBonifaceleads-3ls.jpg


Thomas was again the pace-setter on the second day of competition (run as a separate round) on Saturday only to throw a chain in the second heat then be refused a re-start (after being hit from behind) in the Final because his kart was stationary when the red flags came out!


Despite that he still had enough points to claim fifth overall place in the combined points standings, an impressive achievement given his age, experience and the 40+ degree temperature Melbourne sweltered in last week.


Kiwi kart champ-turned-V8 Supercar ace Scott McLaughlin was the special guest at the meeting and Thomas was quick to tell him that he was the current holder of a trophy (back home in New Plymouth) with Scott's name on it.


"We're very happy with our result, and could have won on Saturday and overall if we'd had a bit of luck," Thomas's father Robert said this week. "Thomas drove amazingly well in very trying conditions we've never experienced before."


Thomas says he would like to thank a number of people who helped make the trip possible including Grandad Barney, Mum & Dad, Tim and Tyler O'Leary, Tim and Tex McKoy for the chassis, A1 engines, Plant and Platform Consultants, Hydraulink NZ, The Sign Shop, Rotech Automotive, Supreme Kart Supplies and the many supporters who rang and texted all weekend.


Thomas Boniface (#67) leading Braydon Callaghan (#9) and Kai Allen #26 at the Junior Top Guns meeting in Melbourne on Saturday . Photo credit: Fast Company/Boniface family


Prepared by FAST COMPANY on behalf of KartSport New Zealand. To find out more about Thomas'  trip to Melbourne for the Junior Top Guns meeting in Melbourne contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or via e-mail at







KartSport New Zealand