A beautiful sunny Spring day for Oakleigh’s October Club Day – a Saturday day/night affair with the promise of a clear night ahead. Numbers a bit down, perhaps with the Melbourne Cup Day “long weekend” so many people seem to take these days, but for those that turned up, a perfect day. Once Qualifying was completed we got racing underway.
Restricted 125 Heavy
Zachary Marshall off pole with Andrew Ceravolo beside him and as we go green Marshall to the lead, Ceravolo, then Tristan Fusinato, William Hewett into 4th but Hewett out at Tony Kart turn on Lap 4 as 3 karts try to go through a corner best suited to 1. From there on Marshall extended his lead and took the chequered flag ahead of Fusinato who got past Ceravolo.
Heat 2 and Marshall leads them away, Fusinato and Ceravolo behind him with Hewett quickly up to 4th after his Heat 1 DNF. By Lap 3 these 4 had bunched up and Fusinato and Ceravolo were putting on a show of dicing, then Hewett got on the back of Ceravolo but he was not proving easy to pass. So in the end they crossed the line in this order: Marshall, Fusinato, Ceravolo and Hewett.
Finals time and Fusinato gets the jump at the green to lead Marshall, Ceravolo, Jones and Hewett around, but on Lap 2 Hewett moves into 4th passing Jones, then a lap later moves to 3rd passing Ceravolo. Another lap later and Marshall moves to the lead getting the better of Fusinato, then Ceravolo’s day is livened up considerably when he loses a rear wheel going into the Dipper and pirouettes gracefully off the track, so in the end it is Marshall, Fusinato and Hewett your podium.
Heat 2 sees Martin lead Matera, Barnes and Baldacchino around for many laps, Martin pulling clear, until Barnes and Baldacchino tangle exiting the Dipper and while one rides up on the back of the other, Fisher and Dvorak sneak past to move into 3 and 4; Martin an easy winner in the end.
Matera gets the jump at the green to begin the Final, but Martin soon restores order by taking the lead with Dvorak 2nd and Matera now in 3rd and that’s how they continue for many laps until they greet the finisher, Martin the victor. Dvorak’s day goes south when he fails the weigh in and is DQ’d, so Matera 2nd.
Toby Dvorak and Thomas Patching then Nate Young and Giancarlo Artho the front 2 rows and Patching to the lead at the green, but Dvorak got around him at JSKC lap 1 and took the lead which he then held for the duration. Further back Hayley Zammit had a spin at JSKC and a DNF, but no trouble for Dvorak who led home Patching and Artho.
Heat 2 of Cadet 9 saw a race of almost 3 pairs: Dvorak and Patching out front, Young and Artho in the middle and then Zammit and Newborn rounding up the rear. Lots of circulating, no passing, Dvorak our winner.
Things started out fairly close together in the Final, but Dvorak soon moved to a commanding lead while Young spun further back and dropped to last – between these 2 were Patching, Artho, Zammit and Newborn and as the laps counted down this is how they stayed, Dvorak drawing away for the win.
KA3 Senior Heavy / Super Heavy
Familiar faces at the front here with John Reynolds and Brenden Jenner in Heavy and David Martin and Nicholas Drew in Super Heavy. Racing was pretty straightforward with Reynolds away to a good lead ahead of Jenner and Adam Corbett, and in Supers Martin held sway over Drew and Aaron Hocking.
Heat 2 of KA3 Heavy was a familiar affair with Reynolds leading Jenner and Corbett across the line, but in Super Heavy Drew dropped to the rear at the start as Martin took off with Hocking and Kemp behind him, so Drew had some work ahead of him. He was up to the task though, rounding up first Kemp, then Hocking to take 2nd, Martin home in 1st.
With Reynolds dominating here, the interest was perhaps in the minor placings and Jenner and Corbett turned on quite a race in Heavy, while Martin led Drew and Kemp comprehensively in Super Heavy. Sure enough, Reynolds drove away and Jenner and Corbett put on a show, Corbett got the upper hand in the end, Jenner 3rd and Duncan 4th, with Martin the Super Heavy victor
Restricted 125 Light
Only 4 here this month and it was Kyle King, Stephen Barker, Stephen Marshall and Shannon Ryan that made up the field. At the green King away with Marshall through to 2nd and they spread further apart as things went on, Barker and Ryan dropping back as King took the win ahead of Marshall.
Heat 2 was heat 1 all over again as King led Marshall then Barker all the way, with Ryan rounding out the 4.
By the end of Lap 1 of the final King held an enormous lead ahead of Marshall who in turn was well clear of Barker – and he was well ahead of Ryan. From there we could watch the grass grow (which it was certainly doing with all our recent rain) or watch the race – no offence to the competitors but it wasn’t riveting stuff to watch, King an easy winner.
Liam O’Donnell and Joshua D’Ambrosio head the battle of the apostrophes, then Damon Woods, Jack Lawson, Isaac Woodhouse and Jett Wilson, and at the green O’Donnell took off with D’Ambrosio and Woods close behind and these 3 put on a good dice for the lead. On lap 4 Woods put a wild pass on D’Ambrosio at Tony Kart turn to go to 2nd – I think he’d been watching Whincup pass McLaughlin at Bathurst – and this handed O’Donnell a bigger lead which he made the most of to go on and win, while D’Ambrosio made up the ground he had lost to be right on the tail of Woods by the flag.
The promise of an exciting 2nd heat as we got going, and it delivered: O’Donnell then D’Ambrosio, Woods then Lawson, with Woodhouse watching on. The front 3 pulled away then on Lap 5 D’Ambrosio to the lead in the Dipper and then same lap and Woods got around O’Donnell at the Grid Hairpin to relegate him to 3rd, then on the 2nd last lap Woods got by D’Ambrosio at JSKC to take the win.
So Woods off pole for the final with O’Donnell beside him and O’Donnell the better of the start to take the lead with D’Ambrosio 3rd and a gap back to Woodhouse in 4th. These front 4 would produce the winner you would imagine, so away they went – lap 3 and Woods takes the lead, half a lap later and D’Ambrosio moves into 2nd, so O’Donnell has some work to do. By lap 6 we had Woods and D’Ambrosio nose to tail while O’Donnell looks on. Look on was about all he could do as the pair of Woods and D’Ambrosio drove away with it, Woods a good job to hang on for the win in the end.
KA4 Junior Light
A messy start saw Bradley James hold the lead from pole while Callum Potter who started P2 found himself back in 6th – ahead of him Jai Sparey, Joshua Hocking, Hamish Allan and Matthew Hillyer. A few laps in Potter had made up 1 spot getting past Hillyer then a lap later he made another spot getting past Allan, so good work by Potter – now he set out after Hocking. Meanwhile James drove away with it while Sparey and Hocking diced in the closing laps but managed to hang on in 2 and 3, Potter still 4th.
James off pole but Sparey a better start and Potter followed him through from 4th while James dropped to 3rd and Hocking to 4th. With 5 to go James gets under Potter to take 2nd, Sparey still leading; further back Hillyer had passed Hocking at JSKC to be 4th. James recovered well and was pressuring Sparey for the lead, but Sparey led him to the flag in the end; Potter 3rd.
James leads them away in the Final but lap 2 and Sparey goes to the lead, with Hocking in 3rd then Potter, Hillyer and Allan behind him. Lap 3 and Potter has dropped back to 6th as Hillyer and Allan get past him, meanwhile Sparey continues on his merry way out front. James had other ideas though and on lap 6 he has a big look at Sparey at JSKC but thinks better of it and pulls out. This front group then forms a tight bunch of karts but in the end the only change is Potter making his way back to 5th by passing Allan, while Sparey leads James across the line to take the win.
TAG 125 Light
Daniel Griffin off pole with Shane Kovacs beside him and Rory Spencer and James Barnes behind them. Only 2 Heavys: Richard Matera and Zach Morris. Kovacs the better of the start and took the lead but 3 laps in and Griffin had him under the hammer – goes under him at JSKC on lap 5 but overcooks it and Kovacs gets back in the lead on the way out of the corner. Soon Barnes and Spencer were threatening Griffin but he was good enough to pull clear and keep Kovacs in sight. Last lap and Griffin has a look at JSKC but thinks better of it and retreats and that seals his fate; Kovacs takes the win with Griffin, Barnes and Spencer behind him, while Matera leads Morris over the line in Heavy.
Kovacs off Pole ahead of Griffin in Light and Matera leads Morris off in Heavy. Lap 1 and Griffin goes the lead ahead of Kovacs, then Spencer, Carless and Barnes, while Matera has the better of Morris in Heavy and that’s the way they finished.
Griffin and Kovacs look like providing all the excitement in the Final and Kovacs grabs the lead at the green to kick off proceedings, then Spencer, Barnes and Carless trail Griffin, while Matera leads Morris in Heavy. Lap 2 and Griffin takes the lead and from there he will not be headed as he drives away with it. Meanwhile Carless provides the entertainment in this race, moving into 3rd by Lap 9 then making last gasp swoop for 2nd at Arrow corner to edge out Kovacs – Griffin already home; and Matera the man in Heavy.
KA3 Senior Light
Ben Mouritz a good job to out qualify James Sera who found the weather to his liking today, so decided to run a Club Day, behind this pair Jack Bell and Michael Carless. At the green Sera looked to be trapped on the wrong side of the pack but in a classic manoeuvre held it around the outside at JSKC corner (appropriately enough!) to take the lead ahead of Bell and Mouritz, then Carless and Kolar. Lap 2 and Mouritz regains 2nd spot getting past Bell in the Dipper then setting out after Sera and soon it was these 2 alone at the front. Before long Bell reels them in again and we look like having a race, but Sera and Mouritz again made it a race in 2 as they pulled away, Sera taking the win in the end.
A good race looming as Heat 1 showed Mouritz, Bell and Carless have what it takes to challenge Sera and so James leads us away at the green with Bell, Mouritz, Carless and Kolar behind him and on Lap 2 Bell goes under Sera at Tony Kart turn (appropriate, given the kart Bell is driving). For the next few laps the front 3 are very close until Sera re takes the lead at JSKC corner (even better, do it at a corner named after you!), but then Bell goes to the lead at the Grid Hairpin and Mouritz follows him through under Sera who is relegated to 3rd. A great display of kart racing from there on as they go around nose to tail, Sera finally pinching 2nd place back, going under Bell again at JSKC corner – Mouritz still our leader and Carless now in 4th. And so they continue to the flag; Mouritz victorious – look out for the final!
So here we are – potentially the best final of the day and Mouritz leads them off; Sera, Bell and Carless close behind. Lap 2 and Bell to 2nd as he gets past Sera in the Dipper – plenty of laps left though so we wait to see what will unfold. Lap 3 and Sera gets back under Bell but this dicing has given Mouritz a gap and he presses ahead to make the most of the opportunity. For many laps thereafter, the front 4 are all lapping within a tenth of each other – all in the 40.8’s – and it is absorbing to watch the laps count down. Sera gradually moves closer and Bell is quick too – you just expect Sera will find something but Mouritz is reeling them off. Still there isn’t a tenth between them in lap times; then Sera put in a few laps that were a couple of tenths better; he looks closer, but as we start the last lap it’s Mouritz by 0.305. There is nothing in it but Mouritz drives superbly and leads Sera to the line, Bell a valiant 3rd with Carless back in 4th – a great race to watch and well done to Mouritz. Although a long time racer at Oakleigh, he hasn’t been back at it for long and Sera is never easy to beat.
Only 4 of them and Henry Johnstone the quickest, then Jack Martin, Jordan Dudfield and Pearson Grant and at the green Johnstone and Dudfield find themselves the lead pair, then before long Dudfield to the lead and takes the win from Johnstone then Martin and further back Pearson.
And then there were 3 as Pearson didn’t front for Heat 2 leaving Dudfield, Johnstone and Martin to battle it out. There wasn’t actually that much battling as they started and finished in that order.
Following the exciting KA3 Senior Final, we perhaps weren’t expecting much from a 3 kart KA3 Junior Final, but the boys delivered a beauty. Although few in numbers, you could hardly have got a closer race. After 7 laps there was less than ½ a second from 1st to 3rd – Dudfield the leader, Johnstone the tail and Martin the meat in the sandwich. After more laps of close racing Dudfield took the flag in the end.
Following the beautiful day I mentioned in the intro, as darkness descended we were nearly carried away by insects and moths while outside near the lights, and inside the box I was under siege from mosquitos. After Melbourne’s very wet early spring which has led to mozzies in plague proportions, the mild night and lights certainly brought them out to play. Thanks to the Doc for rounding up some Mortein for me, once he finished bombing the starter’s box I was ankle deep in dead mozzies!
See you all for Class Titles in November!!