Experienced rider and swinger Mike Zachan and Ben Franklin won their first major title as a duo on Saturday night at the Robertson Holden International Speedway, clinching the North Island Sidecar Champs with an exciting last corner pass. The Hodge twins added another 1-2 finish with victory in the Manawatu Youth Ministock Champs.
AFC Motorcycles North Island Sidecar Champs
A quality field featuring a number of former champions would contest three qualifying heats each, with the top trio of point scorers heading to a three-race final. The next 10 qualifiers would take part in a pair of last-chance repechages, with the winner of each also progressing to the finals.
97p Mike Zachan & Ben Franklin were the only unbeaten duo in qualifying, scoring the maximum 12 points and progressing. 1nzk Dave Gannon & Daryl Pearce and 34v Aaron & Bryce Rose were also impressive, dropping just a single point each and heading to the finals. A further point behind were 27a Dylan Moohan & Sean Mason and 58p Simon & Austin Windelborn, and both were unlucky to miss out through the repechages after strong qualifying performances. 6a Peter Adams & Jason Hira and 46p Russell Stuart & Andrew Parker were the repechage victors, storming into the finals after finishing qualifying in sixth and eighth equal respectively.
First and second in the opening final heats saw 97p Mike Zachan & Ben Franklin head into the last with a single point lead over 46p Russell Stuart & Andrew Parker who bested them in the second outing. The third heat was a nailbiter with Stuart & Parker holding the lead and seemingly forcing a tiebreaker for the title, but Zachan & Franklin managed a spectacular pass on the last corner to take an entertaining title win. 6a Peter Adams & Jason Hira completed the podium with a pair of strong opening heats despite being unable to start the third.
|North Island Sidecar Champs - Finals|
|Points 1||Points 2||Points 3||Total|
|97p||Mike Zachan & Ben Franklin||4||3||4||11|
|46p||Russell Stuart & Andrew Parker||2||4||3||9|
|6a||Peter Adams & Jason Hira||3||2||0||5|
|1nzk||David Gannon & Daryl Pearce||1||0||2||3|
|34v||Aaron Rose & Bryce Rose||0||1||1||2|
Group One – Heat One: 27w Vaughn Smith, 81g Tara Whiteman, 21p Cody Hodge, 88b Karlin Painter-Dudley, 12s Mason Ward, 32s Liam Whelan – Fastest Lap: 88b – 20.3846
Group Two – Heat One: 23w Logan Bognuda, 94w Ethan Donohue, 56k Regan Tyler, 12p Seth Hodge, 77p Kurtis Tinetti, 10s Jesse Whelan – Fastest Lap: 23w – 20.2738
Group One – Heat Two: 81g, 16w Levi Pou, 32s, 21p, 27w, 88b – Fastest Lap: 27w – 19.9964
Group Two – Heat Two: 55p Max Lowe, 77p, 12p, 10s, 94w, 24v Sarah Meyer – Fastest Lap: 12p – 20.1374
Group One – Heat Three: 21p, 16w, 32s, 5p Floyd Penn, 88b, 27w – Fastest Lap: 88b – 20.6024
Group Two – Heat Three: 12p, 77p, 64w Sam Hargreaves, 23w, 94w, 24v – Fastest Lap: 12p – 20.1750
Final: 12p Seth Hodge, 21p Cody Hodge, 94w Ethan Donohue, 77p Kurtis Tinetti, 23w Logan Bognuda, 88b Karlin Painter-Dudley – Fastest Lap: 55p – 19.8211
Race One: 21w Stephen Taylor, 28p Tony Uhlenberg, 18p Greg Pickerill – Fastest Lap: 21w – 13.5288
Race Two: 18p, 19p Kendall Savage, 21w, 8p Paul Donovan, 28p – Fastest Lap: 8p – 14.0092
Feature: 18p, 21w, 19p, 28p, 8p – Fastest Lap: 18p – 14.2593
Race One: 72p Elliot Heron, 1nzp Shane Dewar, 10s Shaun Dickie, 55s Cory Ward, 3nzs Bayley Betts, 37p Todd Phillips – Fastest Lap: 10s – 14.7860
Race Two: 10s, 3nzs, 8p Nathan Jefferies, 1nzp, 55s, 72p – Fastest Lap: 10s – 14.9670
Race Three: 1nzp, 10s, 72p, 13p Tony Johnson, 55s, 3nzs – Fastest Lap: 10s – 14.7664
Feature: 1nzp, 10s, 3nzs, 55s, 72p, 8p – Fastest Lap: 1nzp – 14.7597