by Frank Viola
Dapco Eaton Coastal Classic, Bunbury City Kart Club July 22 – 23rd 2017
A wonderful weekend of kart racing was witnessed by those brave enough to attend. The weather was extremely difficult, but the drivers, pit crews, officials and those others volunteering their services performed brilliantly all weekend. We were treated to three ladies competing in the Open Performance class. This is unheard of in WA, it has been a long time since were saw the fairer sex competing in the class.
The KZ2 class was spectacular as usual and the lads certainly didn’t disappoint us with their kart presentation as well. Some of the finest karters in WA competed in this class over the weekend. A large field of Cadet 12s also fronted the starter, as well as a big field of TaG Heavy drivers.
A fantastic turn out for this class. They always do a brilliant job of preparing the Karts for racing. Spectacular, fast and well prepared Karts are a great recipe for the spectators and the drivers did not disappoint.
The weather conditions were playing havoc with set-up and the drivers. When it wasn’t sheeting down with rain, the wind was blowing a gale. The track was never dry after the first heat and the weather conditions on Saturday night did not favour those without a weather app. Nevertheless, the drivers were enjoying the challenging conditions and they put on a great show.
Joshua Merritt was the quickest in qualifying and he was followed in the first row by Jake Klarich. Alex Barboutis and Tyler Spouse-Nastasi on row two. Dan Currey and Peter Newland sat on the third row. Mitchell Perella and Dean Whittome were occupying the fourth row followed by Hayden Patrizzi and Harrison Oddie on the fifth row of the grid.
Heat one belonged to Alex Barboutis followed by Currey, Merritt and Klarich. The second was taken out by Merritt, followed by Currey and Barboutis. Dan Currey took out the pre-final followed by Barboutis and Klarich.
Things changed for the final. Jake Klarich had had a fair run until that point, but a DNF with an engine problem in the second heat didn’t help. He bounced back in the pre-final and his week-end improved. He was just a little bit quicker than the others, having “preserved” his tyres with the earlier DNF. He was able to snatch the lead on lap seven and stayed there until the flag. Dan Currey was leading the final until lap seven when Klarich took over at the front.
Alex Barboutis had a few issues in the final after a great week-end, but managed to stay on the track. He was not able to complete the 25 laps after falling steadily through the field.
Dean Whittome was pleased as punch when he was able to snatch a great podium after starting 8th in the final.
1. Jake Klarich (Luxor)
2. Dan Currey (Maranello)
3. Dean Whittome (CRG)
4. Peter Newland (Maranello)
5. Hayden Patrizzi (Ricciardo)
Tag 125 Restricted Medium
Kwik Coffee driver Adam Cornick (Energy) must have had a few of his sponsor’s products prior to qualifying as he was able to out qualify his competitors by 3 tenths of a second. Unfortunately the weekend became a nightmare for him as two DNFs in the pre-final and final destroyed his weekend completely.
Arise Racing’s Nathan King was in the best position to take advantage of Cornick’s misfortune. Having qualified second, he was able to take wins in heat one and two before missing out in the pre-final. He was able to get back through the field to take a great win in trying conditions. John Ray (Kosmic) was having a good week-end, after an average start, to finish in second place followed by Brad Stewart (Exprit) in third. Both drivers were able to make their way through the field after difficulties in qualifying.
1. Nathan King
2. John Ray (Kosmic)
3. Brad Stewart (Exprit)
4. Bruce Skyring (Omega)
5. Peter TenBroek (Arrow)
Nash Ferraro (FA) was able to deal with the conditions in the final just a little better than Toby Maiolo (OTK) and Chase Wildman (OTK). Maiolo had had the perfect week-end, qualifying first and winning all the heats. But as it is in all sports, the lady started singing and Nash Ferraro must have liked the tune a bit better. The three were at it all week-end. This class got the worst of the weather and they seemed to be the first ones to be out on track after the rain. They handled the conditions brilliantly and you could not imagine that they are actually nine years and younger.
Tyler Reidyk and Chevelle Hamilton also had a fair weekend to claim 4th and 5th respectively.
1. Nash Ferraro (FA)
2. Toby Maiolo (OTK)
3. Chase Wildman (OTK)
4. Tyler Reidyk (OTK)
5. Chevelle Hamilton (FA)
Jack Clohessy was able to take out the class after a week-end long dice with Jett Demarte (OTK). Demarte was clearly the best performed driver in this class over the entire week-end and deserved a better result than the one he got. A DNF cost him the first place trophy he deserved.
Qualifying on pole and winning each heat, Demarte drove very well all week-end, perhaps the best he has driven all year. Clohessy was not far behind him over the week-end and was able to sneak past him on two occasions. But with Rossi like canny driving skills Demarte was able to get past Clohessy on the last lap on a few occasions to take out two of the earlier heats.
What happened on the very first corner of the final we will never know. It didn’t look great and it cost Demarte a bent axle and a rotten end to a great week-end. The family had been coming down to Bunbury three week-ends in a row to test and race. Sometimes you get your rewards for hard work and sometimes you don’t. Go figure……
James Miccucci-Allen (Omega) drove very well all week-end and he was able to be in the right place at the right time. He drove extremely well to take out second place in the final after an interesting racing incident on the last lap between the then leader and the then second place driver.
An unbelievable effort by Jack Caiulo in the heats caught the attention of many spectators. He sliced through the field in each heat. Considering the weather, track conditions, age and experience he was a standout. He drove from the rear of the field after not being able to qualify. Jack was able to finish fifth in the end and he was possibly the best driver of the week-end.
1. Jack Clohessy
2. James Miccucci Allen (Omega)
3. Judd Stevens (OTK)
4. Joshua Byrne (OTK)
5. Jack Caiulo (OTK)
Ryan Bender dominated the entire weekend and was heading for another big trophy until the final came around. He wasn’t able to qualify so he had to start last in the first heat. He showed his class to slice through the field in heat one. He won all the heats and Pre-final. Dylan Fefolja was running just slightly off the pace the Bender was setting in second. Cody Leunan, in third place and Thomas Callaghan, fourth, were having a fairly good run.
The entire meeting ran reasonably smoothly for these drivers until the final. Ferolja missed out in the Pre-Final. Unfortunately for Bender, he would not make it to the chequered flag as well and did not get past lap 12 in the final.
Harrison Lang who was struggling at the rear of the field for most of the week-end was able to take advantage of the circumstances and conditions in the final. He came through to take an unexpected victory in the winner take all final. Callaghan and Leunan were able to take the minor placings.
1. Harrison Lang
2. Thomas Callaghan
3. Cody Leunen
4. Keiren Ellis5. Chase Hoy
Glenn Fisher was a great winner in this class. He dominated the entire weekend, qualifying on pole and taken out all the heats, pre-final and final. He drove very well all week-end and deserved the win. All credit to him for a marvelous effort.
The sensation of the weekend was the fine effort by Courtney Gough to take out second place. It was her first time in a Twin Super (Open Performance) Kart and she thoroughly enjoyed it. The last female driver in WA in this class was Marlene Dean who passed away earlier this year.
Courtney had the most fun she’s had in a kart for a long time. She was taking a lot of inspiration from Marlene Dean in the Twin. She believes that if she can be just a fraction of the driver Marlene was, she will be very happy.
Daniel Stewart also had a great weekend to finish in third place with Reece Friend in fourth and Matthew Chambers in fifth place.
Even more historical was the fact that Melinda Sulley and Jessie Harman also competed in this class on the day. The weekend was a little more difficult for them, but they will come good in the end.
1. Glenn Fisher (Praga)
2. Courtney Gough (Birel)
3. Daniel Stewart (Arrow)
4. Reece Friend (Praga)
5. Mathew Chambers
Tag 125 Heavy
Bayley Bell (Tibi) qualified in the number two position, but that was the last time the number two was mentioned for him for the rest of the weekend. He reeled off four fantastic wins in each heat and the finals. He won the first narrowly, the second by three seconds. The pre-final was a close run thing and the final was clearer cut. All in all, a great weekend for him.
For Ryan Barron (CRG), it was a different story. Qualifying on the 6th row, he was able to progress steadily taking a 5th in heat one, third in the pre-final and a fine second place in the Final.
Taylor Thomas (CRG) too, was off the pace in qualifying, but he was able to resurrect his weekend by steady performances in the heats. A DNF in the Pre-final meant that his final was going to be difficult. He drove very well to match Bayley Bell’s times in the final. Unfortunately for him, he was just too far back to try for the win.
1. Bayley Bell (Tibi)
2. Ryan Barron (CRG)
3. Taylor Thomas (CRG)
4. Robert Hooper (Tibi)
5. Craig Ryan (CRG)
TaG 125 Light
Shane McPherson (Kosmic) was the quickest in qualifying. He wasn’t able to take advantage of this as a result of circumstances beyond his control.
But, Brock Kenny (OTK) was able to be at the pointy end at the right time. Wins in all his heats set him up for the best position for the final. Helped by a little local knowledge and about a million laps on this track, he was just too quick for his opponents in this final. Some slightly left field driving techniques were able to propel him to a very big lead and he was a handsome winner this time.
Corey Hayes too drove very well and he was a deserving second in the end after qualifying third. Michael Jones was in the right place at the right time to take out third.
1. Brock Kenny (OTK)
2. Corey Hayes (Italkart)
3. Michael Jones (FA)
4.Siobhan Sutherland (FA)
5. Alex Hannant (CRG)
Glenn Fisher was able come out on top in 125 Restricted Light after qualifying quickest of a very small group of drivers. It was great see veteran Gavin Kennedy out there and he was able to take home a second place trophy as well.
Keb Evans was fortunate to win the Sportsman KA3 Senior Lights. A great drive in the final gave him the win from Ashley Morrisey and Bradley Nock.
Luke Sawyer took home the honours in KA4 Junior Heavy. He, Kieren Ellis and Thomas Callahan had a week-end long battle. Well done to all the drivers in this class, they handled wet weather extremely well.
Craig Spencer, Dylan Fefolja, Luke Sawyer, Liam Cain and Cody Leunan had a fantastic battle all week-end in KA4 Junior Light. It is a pity that it wasn’t a larger class, but in the end Craig Spencer was able to take home the big trophy, followed by Ferfolja and Sawyer.
Luke Sawyer was a busy lad this week-end, running the Light and KA4 Junior Heavy classes. It paid off, because he was able to win out ahead of Kieren Ellis and Thomas Callaghan. Caprice hall continues to improve with 4th and Imogen Vince was consistence all weekend coming in 5th.
Jye Parham was unlucky not to take out the Sportsman KA3 Senior Medium class after winning all the heats and qualifying on pole. However, Reece Maisey was a worthy winner as he was the quickest in the wet conditions in the final. Jye Parham and Daniel Vidos did their best to keep up, but Maisey was just too quick for them. His best lap times were just under a second quicker than the rest. So all in all a great week-end for him.