Ken Smith rebuffs F5000 challengers
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Single-seater racing veteran Ken Smith remains unbeaten in the 2018-19 SAS Autoparts MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series following three more wins at the second round raced at Taupo’s Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park over the weekend.
Smith faced some close competition from young Christchurch driver Michael Collins (McRae GM1) and British driver Greg Thornton (Chevron B24) but he controlled the pace in his 1976 Lola T332 to win the Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning preliminary races.
Mike Davidson (Reynard 84FF) kicks up the dust in a close battle for second place in the Historic Formula Ford racing. COLIN SMITH PHOTO
In Sunday’s Historic GP feature race Thornton managed to briefly grab the lead in his ex-Peter Gethin Chevron but Smith responded quickly and completed the 10-lapper with a 0.307secs advantage over Thornton with Rotorua’s Brett Willis (Lola T330) moving up to third ahead of Collins.
Smith’s first three wins of the series came during the Pukekohe Supercars event in November and his campaign continues this weekend when the Formula 5000s join the Castrol Toyota Racing Series programme at Hampton Downs.
In a similar vein to Smith’s unbeaten effort, both of the single-seater support classes also saw one driver clean-sweep the weekend.
French driver Alain Girardet out in front of the Historic Formula ford field in his 195 Crossle 25F. COLIN SMITH PHOTO
Frenchman Alain Girardet drove his 1974 Crossle 25F to four wins from four starts in the Historic Formula Ford events and Grant Clearwater (Kerikeri) driving his 1100cc 1962 Cooper T59 won all three of the Formula Junior, Formula 3 and Sports Racing events.
Honours were more evenly spread through the tin-top classes.
Roger Williams (Drury) had his spectacular 6.0-litre 1975 Chevrolet Monza out in front of the Sports Sedans and claimed three wins while the combined Historic Muscle Car and Historic Saloon Car races with mixed grid formats produced four race winners.
The Escort RS1600 of Paul McCarthy (Waitakere) and Ford Mustang driver Tony Mexted (Silverdale) each won on Saturday while Glen Allingham (Waimauku) in his 1970 Chev Camaro and Aucklander Neville Hills (Escort RS2000) were the Sunday winners.
The rapid Mazda RX2 of Ian Williamson (Whanganui) figured strongly in those races and also won both times out when the smaller capacity Historic saloons raced alone without the V8 machines.
The Carl Cox Motorsport Cup for Hyosung and Kawasaki Ninja motorcycles included a 1-hour enduro won by Ninja rider Jacob Stroud (Taupo). Stroud recovered from a Turn 1 tumble on the second lap and with pace more than 3secs a lap quicker than his rivals he’d already overhauled Zak Fuller (Taupiri) at mid-distance.