BESNARD MAINTAINS NZV8 CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD WITH RACE WIN AT CHRISTCHURCH
Gold Coast driver David Besnard recorded a race win to maintain his series lead after a drama packed weekend in Round 2 of the New Zealand V8 Championship at the Ruapuna circuit in Christchurch today.
Besnard showed his best fighting qualities to come back from mechanical dramas, twice being spun out by opposing cars and a meeting-ending rain deluge to continue to push for a Championship on debut in the competitive Kiwi series.
Besnard powered to a 12-second win in the second race of the three race program, passing reigning NZV8 Champion Kayne Scott on his way to victory from third position on the grid.
"It's just great racing over here, there is a lot of passing and I'm sure the spectators must love it," said Besnard.
"The best thing about today's race was that we had some really good, hard, clean racing with Kayne Scott. We passed him through the corners, not on the main straight, and it's really good to race with guys like that."
The Hydraulink Racing Team suffered a broken diff in qualifying on Saturday and was forced to start race one from the back of the grid. Besnard put the early setback behind him, passing eight cars on the first lap before being spun out.
Once again at the back of the field, Besnard showed his renowned passing ability to fight through the pack to a ninth placing. Fellow Ford driver Dale Lambert was penalised with a drive through penalty for his first-lap collision with Besnard.
Besnard's combined results from the first two races pushed him back to 22nd position for the start of the final 20 lap full reverse-grid race. The WPS Racing endurance driver's challenge was made all the more difficult when a huge rainstorm descended on the track, creating appalling conditions for racing.
Bad luck again struck the Hydraulink Racing Team as Besnard was hit by another vehicle while charging through the field before a throttle cable issue forced an unscheduled pit stop. Returning to the race several laps down, Besnard pushed to a 17th place finish and accrued enough points to maintain his Championship lead.
"It's part of racing, it's always going to happen, there's always going to be a bit of carnage in reverse grid races," said Besnard.
"The conditions were really slippery, all in all it was a really rough weekend. Hopefully we'll put the bad luck behind us now, it's just one of those things."
"It's still a great class and has some great racing -- and we just have to keep on top of where we are."
Holden driver Kayne Scott won the round and moved to fourth place in the Championship. Besnard currently leads the New Zealand V8 Championship on 346 points ahead of New Zealand drivers John McIntyre (337) and Angus Fogg (295).
The New Zealand V8 Championship now breaks until 2007, returning on January 19-21 at Hydraulink Racing's test track -- Taupo Motorsport Park.
-credit: bam media