by Paul Griffiths
For Oakleigh’s August Club Day we run the now traditional Saturday Day / Night meeting as we prepare to shake off winter generally come out of hibernation. Winter wasn’t entirely done with though as we raced through a chilly and cloudy afternoon that turned into a rainy evening which livened up a few of the later races. We ran two heats, a pre-final and a final for August with the heats drawn random and reverse – my preferred race format for Club Days if anyone cares!
The report this month is a shortened version as I was also doing flags and with a number of combined classes and some wet races towards the end it is all a bit short on details. Apologies if I missed your particularly spectacular passing move, but here’s what I saw:
TAG R Light
Nicholas Flodstrom and Cameron Hutchinson off the front row but Hutchinson out in the roll arounds and Andrew Sotiropoulos to the lead shortly after the green. Flodstrom held onto 2nd as Alexander Grutteria moved through and closed up, but Flodstrom held on. Heat 2 and again Sotiropoulos to the lead, this time Grutteria into 2nd with Hutchinson having a better run, taking 3rd ahead of Flodstrom.
The Pre Final saw Sotiropoulos start off Pole and hold the lead for the duration, Grutteria home in 2nd and Flodstrom 3rd. Finals time sees Sotiropoulos continue his domination but Hutchinson moves through to 2nd as Grutteria pulls in with a problem of some sort, in 3rd is Anthony Molluso as Flodstrom also DNF’s so some new names up front here – but Sotiropoulos still our winner.
Cadel Ambrose proved too classy in both Heats winning by a good stretch, Giancarlo Artho and Benjamin Birchall sharing the 2nd places, with Hayley Zammit following them around for a 5th and a 4th. Also debuting in this field we see Charlie Nash who continues Oakleigh’s long line of links with Supercar teams – Charlie being the son of PRA’s Rod Nash – and we hope Charlie and all the other debutants today enjoy their racing at Oakleigh.
Ambrose continued his domination of Cadet 9 to take the Pre Final ahead of Birchall, Artho and Zammit. Ambrose also goes away with it here in the Final, Birchall and Artho trailing him around, then Xavier Avramides, Zammit and Nash behind them.
TAG 125 Heavy / KA3 Senior Medium / KA3 Senior Heavy
Difficult to keep track of so many races within a race but the place getters were: Justin Carless, Brenden Jenner and Vern Kranz in both heats of TAG Heavy, Peter Gigis won both Medium Heats with James Mastorakos and Adam Corbett sharing a 2nd and a 3rd each, then Brett Pennington proving the class of the Heavy field winning both heats ahead of Darren Kemp in Heat 1 and Nicholas Drew in Heat 2.
Jenner took it up to Carless in TAG Heavy and led home the #42 ahead of Kranz and King, in Medium Gigis was victorious ahead of Mastorakos, while Pennington continued his good run to lead home Drew and Kemp in Heavy. Finals get going here, but this race is where the rain comes out and makes things more interesting for all concerned. In TAG H Carless and Jenner box on with Carless getting the upper hand and leading Jenner home, Kranz in 3rd. Mastorakos takes it in Medium as Gigis doesn’t run the Final, so Corbett and French 2 and 3, and in Heavy Pennington undoes all his good work with a spin on Lap 1 that sees him at the rear, a position he never quite recovers from, so Drew and Kemp lead home the Heavy field
KA4 Junior Light / KA4 Junior Heavy
Steve Tsesmelis, Callum Potter and Joshua Hocking make up the Heat 1 top 3, and the same winner in Heat 2, but Hocking into 2nd as Potter and Bradley James both DNF, so 3rd goes to Oakleigh’s other Son of a Supercar Gun, Mason Kelly, son of Kelly Racing’s Todd. In Heavy Lotem Ben Yosef takes the chocolates in both Heats, Benjamin Moss and Riley Jabke 2 and 3 in Heat 1, but Moss a DNF in Heat 2 so Jabke 2nd and Jakob Searle into 3rd.
Hocking and James the best of the Lights here as Tsesmelis has to move through from the rear but Tsesmelis proved good enough in the end to take the Pre Final win ahead of Hocking, James and Potter, while in Heavy Jabke got the initial jump on Ben Yosef, but in the end Ben Yosef took the lead with Moss moving through to 2nd and Jabke back in 3rd ahead of Kelly and Searles. Rain in the Final made it difficult to keep track of what was going on here; Potter was an unfortunate out at the start in Light and Tsesmelis also DNF’d the Final along the way, so the remaining 3 of Hocking, James and Kelly took the podium spots, while in Heavy we also lost Ben Yosef and Moss, so again only 3 left and Jabke, Braden Clarke and Searles took the chockies.
TAG 125 Light / KA3 Senior Light / TAG 125 Masters
Another multi class race that resulted in the following: Light Heat 1 Daniel Griffin led Shane Kovacs and David Hutchinson across the line, then in Heat 2 Griffin also saluted but this time ahead of Kain Kugimiya and Hutchinson. In Light it was Michael Carless ahead of Simon Fallon both times, and in Masters Mick Fisher led home Shane Alabaster and Vern Kranz in Heat 1 but in Heat 2 Kranz turned the tables and Alabaster and Fisher followed him across the line.
Griffin continued his good work here to win the Pre Final ahead of Kugimiya and Hutchinson, Carless all on his own in Light, then Kranz led Fisher, Alabaster and Richard Matera home in Masters. Finals time: more rain, more difficult to follow races. Griffin and Kugimiya went away with it in TAG Light with Kugimiya the victor in the end, in KA3 Light Carless took the flag and in Masters Fisher looked awesome in the wet conditions (early on we thought he might win outright!) and comfortably led home Kranz and Alabaster.
Samuel Gibson leapt to the lead here in Heat 1 followed by Liam O’Donnell then Nate Young, Thomas Patching and Aydin Karadagli and at the flag the front pair of Gibson and O’Donnell had cleared out to take a big victory, Patching now 3rd ahead of Young and Angus Hall. Heat 2 and O’Donnell turned things around on Gibson to take the win, a big gap back to Patching, then another gap back to Young.
O’Donnell stared off Pole and took the win in Cadet 12 leading home Gibson, but all the action was behind them as Young, Patching, Karadagli and Hall battled it out – unfortunately Patching and Hall came together at the Grid Hairpin on the last lap and it was race over for them, O’Donnell and Gibson already gone out front. As the Final began it was O‘Donnell leading the way, but Gibson ground him down in the end and took the flag, Patching home in 3rd.
A pretty straightforward run here for Matthew Hillyer who won both Heats ahead of Hamish Allan and Callum Potter in Heat 1 and Potter and Oliver McNaught in Heat 2 as Allan DNF’d the 2nd Heat.
Hillyer’s run continued in the Pre Final as he led home Allan, Potter and Marty Wright, McNaught unlucky to go out in the roll arounds. The Final proves to be another Hillyer display as he leads from lights to flag, McNaught coming through in the wet conditions for 2nd then Allan and Potter behind them.
TAG R Medium
Will Donnison the hero here moving through from mid field in both Heats to record a victory, both times beating home Tristan Fusinato in 2nd with the 3rd places shared between Andrew Ceravolo and Zachary Marshall, Ceravolo not so lucky in Heat 2 going out last lap in a tangle with Nathan Orton at the Grid Hairpin.
Donnison off to a flying start here as Fusinato out of 2nd had the opposite, with a spin at JSKC seeing him re-join in last place on lap 1. Following Donnison we find Marshall, then a gap back to Will Jefford, Ceravolo and Fusinato who eventually recovers to 4th, but Donnison a convincing winner. A damp Final begins and Donnison away again to the lead with Marshall in 2nd and Fusinato working through to 3rd then Brendan Sarton, Jefford and Ceravolo boxing on behind them. Disaster for Marshall as around 5 laps in he slides off in the greasy conditions at Page Bros corner and despite his best efforts he could not rock the kart back onto the track, so all over for him; Fusinato thus inherits 2nd and Jefford moves through to 3rd, but no one was catching Donnison who went on to take the win in style.