The promise by the Bureau was for rain later in the day, but the morning started off mild and a little windy as they gathered for the May Club Day at Oakleigh. Then, before carbie session had been completed, the Bureau’s prediction proved accurate as rain started to sprinkle across the circuit, but by the time we began Qualifying the sun was streaming down, so it looked like being a busy day ahead for competitors adapting to the changing conditions.
Unfortunately, with no one available to do the track safety lights, I can only provide a summary of the racing as I was on double duty with starting and lights.
Clubman Light / Clubman Heavy
Ben Mouritz dominated proceedings in Clubman Light and John Reynolds would have won the day in Heavy but a spin right at the start of the Final handed the result to Ash Seward.
Restricted 125 Light
Lucas Filikotzias took both the heat wins, with Hirotaka Chong and Bradley Winter swapping a 2nd and a 3rd each, then in the Final Filikotzias again triumphant, with Jack Scanlan and Chong behind him as Winter DNF’d
Pole sitter Rory Spencer was unable to capitalize on his qualifying performance with Dylan O’Keeffe leading him home in Heat 1, Andrew Sotiropolous behind them, then O’Keeffe, Jamie Westaway and Sotiropolous in Heat 2, before Sotiropolous secured the win in a wet Final, O’Keeffe then Westaway behind him in what was a very good, even race.
Vern Kranz the winner of Heat 1 with Shane Alabaster behind him, then Anthony Westaway, so they finished in the order they qualified in, then in Heat 2 the rain really began to tumble down while they were all out there on slicks. Kranz handled the conditions best to take the win, as Mick Fisher cruised through to take 2nd ahead of Anthony Westaway, with Alabaster a DNF. In the Final it was Kranz, Alabaster and Robert Barnes, as Westaway was shuffled back in an early race incident, leaving Fisher to take 4th, Baldacchino and Steve Griffin both DNF’s
Junior National Light & Heavy
Combined this month, the 2 Junior National classes saw Henry Johnstone and Jai Sparey share a win in Light, and Simon Fallon and Kyle Frencham the best Heat results in Heavy. In a drenched Final Frencham actually took the overall win, so a creditable result for the Heavy driver, Johnstone best of the Lights in 2nd overall, then Fallon (H), David Huezo (L), Riley Meens (H) and Adam Pasek (L) the way they crossed the line.
TAG 125 Heavy
Justin Carless fastest qualifier and won the Heats despite dicing with Vern Kranz for a good part of Heat 1, Kranz 2nd in that one, Robert Barnes 2nd in the other. In a Final held on a greasy but drying track Carless took a big win ahead of Kranz and Barnes
Restricted 125 Heavy
Trevor Payne looked like he could do no wrong today, fastest qualifier, then won Heat 1, and took the Heat 2 win when Peter Gigis spun while leading and dropped back to 4th behind Rafe Todd and Chris O’Keeffe, but come the Final and Gigis drove away to take a commanding lead ahead of Todd and then Payne – and that’s the way they finished.
Cadet 9 & Cadet 12
Combined this month in what would become an incredibly confusing race to try and follow or report on, Kobi Williams was the fastest qualifier in 12’s followed by Matthew Hillyer, Braydon Callaghan and Ethan Church, then in 9’s the top 3 (and only competitors) were Jack Lawson, Steven Tsesmelis and Damon Woods. Williams took both the heat wins in 12’s with Callaghan and Hillyer sharing a 2nd and 3rd each, while in 9’s Tsesmelis and Lawson shared a win each ahead of Woods. In the Final Williams looked like he was going to take a victory in 12’s as he led for may laps, but somehow at the end (maybe an incident I missed – there was plenty going on!) it was P Plater Hillyer that greeted the flag with Williams and Callaghan behind him, and in 9’s it was Tsesmelis who led Lawson across the line.