The Griffiths Report Kingston Cup 2016
Oakleigh’s Kingston Cup was held on Saturday 21st of May and the day dawned cool and clear. Karters rolled up looking forward to heats and pre finals through the day and then at least some of the finals under lights tonight.
Liam O’Donnell the fastest qualifier and after a starting infringement in Heat 1 and a win in Heat 2 he started 3rd for the Pre Final, Sam Whiteford and Ayrton Filippi ahead of him, with Toby Dvorak and Cadel Ambrose behind him. O’Donnell took the lead soon after the green and was never headed in the PF, Whiteford and Filippi behind him and Ruby Gibson slotting into 4th ahead of Ambrose and Dvorak.
O’Donnell then took the lead at the start of the Final and immediately a gap back to Whiteford, Filippi, Gibson and Dvorak. Eventually Whiteford pulled clear of the pack to be a solid 2nd, but O’Donnell was g-o-r-n. It would take a mechanical failure you would think. So interest switched to the minor placings, where Whiteford had now dropped back to the pack, ahead still of Filippi, Gibson and Dvorak. Other than Dvorak getting ahead of Gibson then working up onto Filippi and Whiteford, very little happened – O’Donnell took the chocolates easily.
TAG Restricted Light / TAG Restricted Heavy
Hirotaka Chong and Benjamin McMellan the pole men in Light and Heavy respectively and Chong started the Pre Final off pole after 2 wins with Tyler Macellari and William Jacobson behind him, while McMellan was behind Andrew Tabaczynski who had come through from P2 in Heavy to win both heats. Chong away well at the start of the PF and same for Tabaczynski in Heavy; Chong was untroubled taking the win in Light, but Tabaczynski had McMellan within striking distance for most of the last few laps – hanging on for the win in the end.
The Final begins and Chong and Jacobson trailed around together for a few laps while Tabaczynski and McMellan did the same back in Heavy. After only a few laps Chong and Jacobson started lapping slower Heavys and it got real difficult to keep track of. Somewhere amongst all the action Jacobson got to the lead, and then they started reeling in more lapped karts. All the while Jacobson held on, and McMellan had got to the lead in Heavy somewhere along the way too. With a last gasp swoop, Chong tried to get under Jacobson but Jacobson took the win by 0.046, McMellan ahead of Tabaczynski in Heavy,
KA3 Senior Heavy / KA3 Senior Super Heavy
Bryce Woollard fastest in Heavy followed by Peter Gigis, but a Heat 1 DNF and a win in H2 saw Woollard start the Pre Final on P3, ahead of him Gigis and Brenden Jenner. In Super Heavy just the 3: Aaron Hocking, David Martin and Henry Zurek and that’s how they qualified and started the Pre Final, although Hocking and Martin shared a win in the heats. Woollard shot to the lead of the PF ahead of Gigis with Aaron Jackson through to 3rd ahead of Adam Corbett and Jenner; in Super Heavy Hocking held sway ahead of Martin. Woollard drove away with it, Gigis 2nd, Jackson unlucky with yet another one of these rear bumpers flapping in the breeze seeing him meatball flagged and out, allowing Corbett through to 3rd; Martin coming through ahead of Hocking in Super Heavy.
Woollard the jump on Gigis at the green and went to a big lead a few laps later, further back Jackson with Hocking ahead of Martin and Zurek in Super Heavy. Halfway and Hocking had an easier run in Super Heavy as Martin DNF’d at Tony Kart – maybe a tangle I didn’t see? Woollard still driving away out front, Gigis a distant 2nd, Jackson and Corbett equally well back in 3 and 4. In the end it was Woollard by a mile and Hocking by a kilometre, pretty easy for both.
KA4 Junior Heavy
Fastest Qualifier Benjamin D’Alia and won both heats, behind him to start the Pre Final Alexander Grutteria then Antonio Cafiso and Matteo Mifsud, followed by 2nd fastest qualifier Jack Martin who had suffered a Heat 2 DNF after running a very close 2nd to D’ Alia in Heat 1, so watch for him coming through. Grutteria ahead of D’Alia as they got started, Martin 3rd after a lap too, so he was making ground. Within a few laps he had passed D’Alia to take 2nd, then had a look at Grutteria as he piled on the pressure – and took the lead a lap later, so now a tight bunch of 3 up front. With 6 to go Grutteria was now back in front, D’Alia and Martin behind him and that’s how they finished the PF.
D’Alia popped out in front after Grutteria slipped back from Pole, then dropped further back in a brush at Tony kart that saw him 4th, Martin and Cafiso sneaking through to 2 and 3. A lap or 2 later Martin was right on D’Alia’s bumper and looking to go to the lead, while Grutteria had recovered to move to 3rd. For many laps thereafter, not much changed: D’Alia led, Martin pressured, Grutteria gained – finally Grutteria had a look at Martin at JSKC but reconsidered and dropped back. A lap later and he was on Martin again, but this was helping D’Alia. Then Grutteria to 2nd with 8 to go in a clean move at the Grid Hairpin – could he catch D’Alia? He looked like he wanted to (in fact I’m sure he wanted to) but he couldn’t shake off Martin. Maybe he used up all his beans getting back this far. So it was that D’Alia saluted for the win and Grutteria had to settle for 2nd, Martin 3rd.
Kobi Williams then Matthew Domaschenz, Hugo Simpson, Joshua Hocking and Nicholas Sacco is our Pre Final top 5 after Williams and Domaschenz took two wins and two 2nds respectively in the heats. Away went Williams at the green in the PF and left Simpson and Domaschenz in his wake, then Hocking and Sacco moved through to be 3rd and 4th as Domaschenz dropped back. Halfway and Williams out to a more than 3 second lead as the rest of them fought for position in a bunch behind him. Hocking eventually pushed through to 2nd but no one was catching Williams.
Williams then off Pole but Hocking the early lead until Williams wrested it back off him in about Lap 4, behind these 2 Simpson and Sacco, then Domaschenz and Massimo Capitanio, but out front Williams was now in command. Hocking in 2nd wasn’t letting Williams dominate as he had in earlier races and these 2 were pulling away, but Hocking had Williams well and truly in his sights. With 4 to go Hocking slipped past Williams to take the lead – first time today Williams had been seriously challenged. Then 2 to go at JSKC and Williams gets back under Hocking – big finish coming up! Williams got the job done though, and hung on to take it – good job.
TAG 125 Light
The 2 Matthew’s; Beninca and Iredale qualified and then started the Pre Final 1 and 2, followed by Jack Scanlan, Daniel Griffin – who had a troubled 1st Heat having to work through from well back, I presume after an incident – Olivia Dalla-Zuanna and Ray-Yu Wang. Iredale away best at the start of the PF to lead Beninca, then Griffin, then a big gap to the rest. Eventually it was a big gap between Iredale and the rest as he drove away out front, still Beninca and Griffin behind him.
Iredale and Beninca the front row and after a couple of goes at a start we got away – a bit wild and woolly, but underway with Iredale, Beninca, Griffin, Dalla-Zuanna and Scanlan the top 6. Iredale gradually extended a small gap on Beninca who in turn pulled slowly clear of Griffin. If nothing changed, this is how they would finish (obviously!! – sounds like Murray Walker’s writing the report!). Around and around they went, but no change in the order looked likely. Finally Andrew Sotiropoulos livened things up by moving through the field and onto the back of Griffin, then taking 3rd on the 2nd last lap, Iredale and Beninca across the line in 1 and 2.
Only 3 here and Nicholas Schembri, Christian Pancione and David Huezo the Pre Final start order as Schembri and Pancione shared a Heat win, Schembri the faster Qualifier. Pancione got the better of the start to lead Schembri and Huezo after a few laps and from there on nothing changed, Pancione our PF winner.
Pancione away with it, followed by Schembri and then Huezo. Bring out the popcorn, sit back and we’ll see if anything changes. Huezo interrupted my popcorn by DNFing with 5 to go, Schembri maybe slowly gaining on Pancione. Gaining too slowly as it turned out – Pancione a winner. Nothing at all against the karters who raced, but a 3 kart field does not good racing make, especially when a third of the field don’t finish!
KA3 Senior Light
James Sera rolled out for a day’s karting and good to see him in action, sitting on Pole ahead of Spencer Ackermann who he led to the flag, but didn’t dominate in the heats, behind Ackermann in the PF were Michael Carless, Zac Soutar, Mark Appleby and Ben Mouritz. A few laps into the PF and it was Sera not a mile ahead of Ackermann and Carless, but then quite a gap to Mouritz and then another to Appleby. In the end, Sera never drove off into the sunset, but he did the bit that matters – he won.
Sera, Ackermann and Carless again formed a tight bunch as the rest spread out behind them, the rest headed by Mouritz, then Joel Smith, Angelo D’Ettorre and Appleby. Halfway and Sera and Ackermann were locked together, but the #1 kart still held the #1 spot. Then 6 to go, Ackermann went to the lead. How long would this last? All the way to the flag as it turned out – well done Ackermann! Sera 2nd and Carless 3rd.
TAG 125 Heavy
Vern Kranz off pole for the Pre Final after qualifying quickest and taking the win in both heats; behind him Aaron Jackson, Ash Seward, Max Carter and Stephen Simpson. Within a couple of laps Seward had charged through to the lead, demoting Kranz to 2nd and Carter now 3rd. Then Carter moved through on Kranz to take 2nd, then Slits barged though, as did Carless so Kranz now 5th! Meanwhile Seward was looking good out front, but Slits not so good as he took a trip into the weeds exiting the Dipper and then pulled in with maybe some damage. Finally with 4 to go Carter overhauled Seward and Carless got through too and these 2 pulled away seeing Carter take the win.
Carter off pole but Seward to the lead as they got underway and soon after Carless had moved to the lead followed by Jackson, then Carter and Seward as we shuffled up the order. Slits and Kranz filled 5 & 6 and behind them then Martin and Simpson. Carless ploughed on and grafted a bigger lead, now Jackson and then Carter trailing behind him, until Carless greeted the finisher – the order behind him unchanged.
KA4 Junior Light
Nicholas Schembri pole man for the heats and took the 2 wins but a post-race penalty saw him drop to P3 for the start of the PF behind Tate Frost and Matthew Hillyer, then Jai Stephenson and Sean Larkin was the way they got started. Frost, Hiller, Schembri and Stephenson a tight bunch at the front for a number of laps in the PF, then a gap to Larkin and Bradley James, but Frost was doing all the work in the lead, now Schembri in 2nd behind him. With 2 to go Schembri had a big look at JSKC but withdrew at the last second – might get one more chance if he doesn’t lose too much ground. Last lap and he’s got Frost under the pump, but Frost prevails, Schembri, Hillyer and Stephenson behind him.
Frost and Schembri off the front row and Schembri took the lead a pulled clear, Frost, Finn Cassidy, Larkin and James behind them. With 11 to go Cassidy moved into 2nd so Frost slipping further back, still Schembri out front. One to watch back in 6th was Emmerson Harvey, working his way back from a Qualifying mishap, then Heat 1 DNF, now looking to salvage something from a dirty day. 5 to go and Frost moved back into 2nd, but Schembri a lonely leader. He continued to lead them to the flag but a starting infringement saw him drop a number of places post race, and so Frost took the win, then Cassidy and Larkin.
After our May Club Day on Sunday the 29th of May, the next big thing is Oakleigh’s round of the Victorian Kart Championship on the 18th & 19th of June. Look forward to seeing you there!!