Well, once again round 2 was a brilliant event, which unfortunately ended in a little controversy! I’d like to stay off the topic but it does need to be addressed, it’s no use sweeping issues like this under the carpet. Im not going to go into who said what, who did what or so on, the fact is there was a cock up regarding results, and probably more importantly procedures.
The rallysprint rules are very basic and are pretty much the same as when the series’ first started way back in the mid-eighties. Here lies our biggest problem, but I can guarantee that it is already being addressed, I have spoken to a few people and still have a few phone calls to make. No rule changes will be made this season but I’ll be talking to the clubs who have rounds coming up just to try and tighten up a few little issues to avoid any more cock ups!
Without doubt we are struggling a little with our own success, which although sounds a little weird is so true. The numbers are high, as is the will to win, the competitive edge has gone up quite a few bars, pressure is on, and mistakes are really effecting people. For this we apologies. But flip the coin and it’s also putting the pressure on organisers, although annoying to those who have suffered it will inevitably strengthen and improve the series, hard to take at the moment, but it’s happened, let’s build a bridge and get over it………Sorry Rob!
So let’s keep things positive. Arcadia road was superb, albeit a little slippy due to a recent road re-grade, the entry was superb with 50 plus cars, the weather was hot and muggy, the surroundings and facilities at the Paparoa Showgrounds were superb. But the event itself did not quite flow as it has in the past, a couple of residents caused a few delays, a few breakdowns and a roll on the bridge caused the event to be cut short, again with such a large field and a few disruptions pressure was on the organisers, it was obvious time was going to be an issue and so the decision was made to drop a run. This was the start of today’s problems, but as mentioned above were not going to dwell on the issue.
Congratulations to Graham Featherstone on the win, pushed extremely hard by Matt Jensen, a full event report will be in the next issue of “A little bit sideways “, which will also have the round one report in as well.
So, the next round, hosted by the Pukekohe Car Club , this is once again a stunning stretch of road, the Bothwell loop road, used many years ago as a WRC road, and it is fantastic, offering a totally different challenge to the first two opening rounds. Heading south and into the franklin area we start to see that lovely dense deep New Zealand bush. The event will be run in the same direction as the last time (2016). I guess you could split the road into 3 sections, from the start line it’s a slight climb, a little twisty through a small forestry section before a tricky downhill bush clad section, the middle section you exist the bush and move into the rolling hills, again quite twisty with the occasional sea view, although im sure the drivers would be totally oblivious to this but it is quite stunning. Concentration must be maximum here, the last third is very fast. As you leave the twisty rolling hills there’s a decent fast section to the junction, a 90 right and a downhill fast section to the finish. Absolutely stunning country side, a stunning smooth road and one not to be missed. The touring section is probably a few k’s at the most.
A quick heads up here for any out of towners wanting to stay over, the Pokeno motel is great, its real close to the event, and it’s got a great little bar & Restaurant, has plenty of parking, the owner actually races a muscle car and being based between the Pukekohe and Hampton Downs race tracks its often full of petrol heads. I know the last time Tracy and I stayed there it was a good evening…..i think !
So, the next question is Regulations, they should be out this weekend so keep an eye on the various sites and facebook. I will post as soon as they are available.
See you all on the 25th