Zoo Town Prepares For Sparco Australian CIK Championships! The Western Plains Zoo is the enduring image portrayed by Dubbo in Western New South Wales -- locals could be forgiven for thinking that the animals have escaped this weekend, as the ...
Zoo Town Prepares For Sparco Australian CIK Championships!
The Western Plains Zoo is the enduring image portrayed by Dubbo in Western New South Wales -- locals could be forgiven for thinking that the animals have escaped this weekend, as the Western New South Wales town becomes the hub of Australian Karting -- Lincoln County Raceway hosts the penultimate round of the Sparco Australian CIK Karting Championships.
This weekend's event will play a pivotal role in determining the outcome of the four Australian Championships classes. The elite Formula A class has proven to be a tense battle all season long between defending champion, Barclay Holden and West Australian livewire, Daniel Elliott.
Elliott has gone undefeated in the three finals contested so far, however still runs second to Holden under the pointscore used in CIK racing by eight points. It's important to note that Holden won his Championship last year without taking a single final victory.
Last year's final at Dubbo was the one where Holden looked most likely to take a win, however a last lap coming together with Championship rival, Jason Hryniuk put pay to that. Hryniuk's season has not been a memorable one, however the CRG driver sits a mere 43 points off the Championship lead in fifth position, and should bad luck befall either Elliott or Holden, he will be ready to pounce.
Between Holden and Hryniuk sits Wollongong's Jason Burns. The Redspeed pilot has been fast for the majority of the year and a few incidents on track would indicate that he should be closer than the 31 points that separate himself and the Championship lead. On the other hand, Elliott's Birel team-mate, Nick Lowe, has shown some raw speed in his debut Formula A year and has been in the right place at the right time on many occasions, seeing him in fourth placing in the title tilt.
Junior Intercontinental A has been a battle royal so far this year and this weekend should be no exception. Three different winners have been crowned from three rounds. Coming into this event, Top Kart's Kristian Lindbom holds a slender advantage from last up winner, Jake Williams (-7 points). Lindbom won last year at Dubbo and always performs solidly at the Western New South Wales track, especially if the grip comes down.
Williams, the Trulli kart exponent, is fired up for a big performance and looking to take a maximum this weekend and the Championship lead. Wanting to get his Championship back on track this weekend too is Definitive Racing BRM's Joshua Scott (-16 points). The round one victor had a lean Toowoomba round points-wise and will be looking to make amends.
In Motor Quality Intercontinental A, Trulli Kart's Ashley Walsh has been unbeatable. Walsh has taken every point that has been up for grabs in this year's Championship and enters this round with a perfect score of 195 points. If the cards fall his way, Walsh can secure the title this weekend at Dubbo.
Walsh's nearest challenger, Top Kart's Paul Laskazeski (-43 points), has had a mixed season, but when his race face has been on, the speed he has shown has been blinding. The young Sydney-sider performs well at Dubbo and will want to keep the Championship alive for his home race in just over a month at Sydney's Eastern Creek.
The revelation of this year's Championship has been Toowoomba's James Mann. Getting caught up in incidents at crucial points sees him sitting fourth on the table (-62 points) behind his fellow Toowoomban, Tim Ball (-60 points). Both are expected to battle it out for the final podium position for the overall Championship.
The Vega Tyres Intercontinental C Gearbox class will provide some spectacular action this weekend on the long flowing Dubbo circuit. The fastest karts in the Sparco Championships, the ICC competitors can be expected to hit somewhere in the vicinity of 160 kilometres per hour with their six-speed gearbox machines.
Like Elliott and Walsh, JT Team Arrow's Bart Price has been dominant, taking three wins from three starts. He will be challenged strongly this weekend by the Mathew Sofi. The CRG driver has just returned from racing in the United States and will no doubt have a number of tricks up his sleeve.
Aiming for a big weekend too will be New South Wales' driver, Tom Williamson. Williamson comes into this weekend's event in second position on the points table, only 26 points behind Price.
The Vega Tyres Intercontinental C Class welcomes two debutantes this weekend in West Aussie Jared Bishop driving a Gillard Chassis and New South Wales' Daniel Erickson, driving a First. Erickson has been performing well at State level this year and will be one to watch.
The Sparco CIK Karting Championships will be supported by the next generation of Australian Karting stars in the Sparco Rookie Challenge.