Country Series Final

by Andrew Hayes, AHR Media

The DPE Victorian Country Series grand finale at the Ballarat Kart Club has proven to be a great success, with 202 entrants taking to 675 metre Haddon Park Raceway over the two days of competition.

The drivers and officials at Haddon Park, Ballarat (pic – Pace Images)

As has been the story of the full series, drivers and crews battled the elements with many classes encountering a range of different conditions throughout the weekend.

Most classes were still in the balance leading into the final round, and several class’s point scores were settled in the finals on Sunday.

James Sera leads the TaG Light conga-train (pic – Pace Images)

The Ballarat club hosted the event well and did their utmost to make the weekend an enjoyable one; and to raise the stakes some truly unique trophies were up for grabs for the podium places on Sunday.

The unique trophies for the final round (pic – Pace Images)
  • Class-by-class reports & results below
  • scroll to the bottom for photo gallery and series points
  • full results on speedhive HERE
  • more photos on Pace Images’ Facebook – Saturday HERE, Sunday HERE

KA3 JUNIOR (10 Entries)

KA3 Junior was first up on track and was as evenly matched as ever. The first pole position of the weekend was taken by Ethan Brown, his time of 30.551 adding to his pole from Hamilton. Series combatants Bronson Boult and Jaxon Johnstone filled second and third, ahead of Will Harper and Portland Winner Ethan Bray. Pole to eighth separated by just three tenths of a second.

The opening corner of the opening heat would see drama, as front row starters Brown and Boult, along with Harper and Jake Santalucia ended up parked in the woodchips after a frenzied start. Johnstone was the main benefactor as he cruised to a comfortable win in tricky conditions. A wildcard addition to the field, Zack Thompson moved from ninth to second to prove his credentials. Bray crossed the line in third, but was relegated to fifth post-race, promoting Riley Jabke and Sam Gibson to third and fourth.

FASTEST LAP: Zack Thompson 31.994

Heat two had all the non-finishers from the opening stanza back in the game, but again it was Johnstone who excelled to win, his weekend looking promising after being quick in all conditions. Boult worked his way back to the front to clinch second, ahead of a consistent Thompson. Harper and Brown rounded out the top five, Brown going faster than his qualifying time to snare the fastest lap.

FASTEST LAP: Ethan Brown 30.464

Johnstone banked more crucial points in the rain effected third heat, taking another win in conditions that have served him well all year. Thompson was out on lap one with an errant wheel, whilst Boult’s woes continued as he dropped well down the field to seventh. Bray and Santalucia stepped up to the plate in the conditions to finish second and third, Gibson and Brown.

FASTEST LAP: Jake Santalucia 36.433

The series hung in the balance as the final rolled out in good conditions, and once again it was Johnstone who made the early running. On lap four Thompson moved to the lead, with Jabke and Boult, who had charged from seventh going with him. From there Boult methodically moved to the lead, and by lap nine he was on his way to a convincing second consecutive round win. Thompson continued to impress on his way to second, whilst Johnstone got the better of Jabke on the final lap to finish third. Rounding out the top five was again was the pole man Brown.

FASTEST LAP: Bronson Boult 30.582

1st Bronson Boult (MGKC), 2nd Zack Thompson (GOUL), 3rd Jaxon Johnstone (WBOOL)

Ka3 Junior winner Bronson Boult (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Jaxon Johnstone (WBOOL), 2nd Bronson Boult (MGKC), 3rd Ethan Brown (GKCV), 4th Isaac Woodhouse (GKCV), 5th Ethan Bray (GKCV)

VICTORIAN COMBINED MASTERS (17 Entries)

Phil Smith has been the man to beat all year long in the hotly contested Masters class, and again set the benchmark in qualifying (31.330) to lead all comers. In fact only three drivers have won a Masters round this year, Ash Mitchell and Peter Gigis being the other two, and they were next in the order in second and third. Matt Crane and Phil Stradbrook also looked swift in fourth and fifth.

Mitchell jumped Smith at the start of the opening heat and looked to be on his way to opening his account for the weekend, but after also having to overcome Gigis in the middle of the race, Smith snatched the win from Mitchell on the final circulation. The top three, including Gigis in third, was covered by just a second at the flag. Crane and Stradbrook retained their position of the best of the rest, to round out the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Phil Smith 31.490

Smith went lights to flag in heat two, strengthening his already welded on grip on top spot in the series. Mitchell and Gigis staged an enthralling battle in the front half of the race, changing positions repeatedly, before a move on the penultimate lap saw Mitchell lock into second and Gigis slip to fifth. Mitchell got to the back of Smith to harass him in the later stages, getting mega drive off the final turn, only to come up three thousands of second short. Greg Ord made every post a winner to move from seventh to third, but unquestionably the drive of the race belonged to Vern Kranz, charging from fourteenth to fourth.

FASTEST LAP: Peter Gigis 31.637

A wet track greeted drivers for the third heat, held on Sunday morning. No surprises that Smith was still the man to beat, taking a calculated win in the wet conditions. Mitchell held down second for the majority of the journey, but was overhauled by wet weather specialist Andrew Stubbs in the closing stages and had to settle for third. Local hero John Page finally got in his groove to move up to fourth, dragging Leon Forrest with him, Forrest rounding out the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Phil Smith 36.884

The final race of the masters’ 2019 VCS was a cracker, with the top three of Smith, Mitchell and Gigis putting on a spectacular performance. Smith led early and looked to have the measure of his rivals, but the action started to sizzle mid race as Mitchell took over the lead, shortly before Gigis took over the front running. Smith worked his way ahead of Mitchell with four laps remaining and proceeded to throw everything at Gigis, who aggressively defended the lead. At the drop of the chequer it was Gigis taking the win, ahead of Smith and Mitchell in a classic. Forrest and Stubbs lead home a five kart freight train for fourth and fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Phil Smith (31.505)

1st Peter Gigis (OAK), 2nd Phil Smith (GKCV), 3rd Ash Mitchell (WIMM)

Vic Combined Masters, Phil Smith (4) and Ashley Mitchell on the front row, round winner Peter Gigis on row two kart 9 (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Phil Smith (GKCV), 2nd Ash Mitchell (WIMM), 3rd Leon Forrest (WIMM), 4th Peter Gigis (OAK), 5th Matt Crane (HAM)

TAG LIGHT (14 Entries)

Tag Light had good numbers after being a strong class throughout the season, and leading into the Ballarat round, five different drivers had won the proceeding five rounds. The Horsham round winner, James Sera showed his class to grab the Ballarat pole with a time of 30.082. Making it a Sera 1-2 just like Horsham, Curt Sera pipped Nathan Williams for second. Nothing in it between Jordan Rae and Will Carroll in fourth and fifth either.

James Sera opened his account in commanding fashion to register a lights to flag win in the opening heat. Behind James though, the battle from second to sixth raged for the entire eleven laps. At the flag Rae had made his way to second, having battled hard with Carroll in third. Curt Sera had dropped as low as sixth before rebounding to fourth, finishing ahead of local cult figure Luke Fong.

FASTEST LAP: James Sera 30.168

Heat two was very much a carbon copy of the first heat, as James Sera paced the field from the front to record his second win of the day. Rae, Carroll and Curt Sera maintained their positions, Rae locked into second for the duration. Despite a charge from Fong, Carroll and Curt resumed their starting positions in third and fourth, whilst Connor Farr slipped by Fong in the closing stages to grab a top five result.

FASTEST LAP: James Sera 30.137

Wet conditions slowed things down in heat three, yet the man at the head of the queue in the early stages was still James Sera. By mid race though, Rae made his move for the lead, a lead that he held for the remainder of the race. James shadowed him to finish in second, ahead of Carroll who had breathing space in front and behind. SA’s Ryan Morgan had looked pacey all weekend, and delivered his best result of fourth, ahead of Curt Sera.

FASTEST LAP: James Sera 36.189

The final would decide the 2019 series champ, and not being in contention for that meant James Sera could focus solely on grabbing a second consecutive round win. In doing so, he became the first driver in the class to win multiple rounds in 2019. Rae was again at the pointy end, running in second place, until a speedy Williams eventually got by, relegating Rae to third. Curt Sera also continued his strong form to just miss the podium in fourth, ahead of an improving Morgan in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: James Sera 30.361

1st James Sera (OAK), 2nd Nathan Williams (GEEL), 3rd Jordan Rae (PORT)

TaG Light podium (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Jordan Rae (PORT), 2nd Curt Sera (GIPP), 3rd Nathan Williams (GEEL), 4th James Sera (OAK), 5th Will Carroll (WBOOL), 5th

KA4 JUNIOR HEAVY (22 Entries)

KA4 Junior Heavy boasted one of the most condensed point’s tallies leading into Ballarat, and not by chance the usual suspects were lurking at the front of the field. Hamilton winner Johnny Hill laid down the marker in qualifying (32.007) to just pip a much improved Zach Findlay. Two blue plates next on the charts, with Josh D’Ambrosio just ahead of Toby Waghorn. Rounding out the top five was Riley Jabke.

Hill made the most of the heat one start to lead the early stages, whilst the start wasn’t so kind to Findlay as he fell to fifth position. But from there Findlay picked off his competitors to move into the lead by mid race, a sensational performance given he sat outside the top 20 in points entering the round. Hill banked solid points to open his challenge for the series win, whilst D’Ambrosio battled early with Waghorn before getting the better of that duel for third. Zach Thompson also overhauled Waghorn on the final circulation for fourth.

FASTEST LAP: Johnny Hill (31.814)

Findlay’s time at the front came to an abrupt end at the opening corner of the second heat, failing to log a lap after his break out performance in the opening race. Hill was also out of business on the opening lap. D’Ambrosio made the most of the demise of the front row to lead the early running before Waghorn took the lead mid race. D’Ambrosio would have to settle for third, as Thompson moved into second and briefly the lead in an entertaining battle with Waghorn. Waghorn got to the stripe first, to lead home Thompson and D’Ambrosio. Max Fahey assumed fourth early in the race and held it to the end. Braden Clark rolled in fifth but received a post-race penalty, dropping him to seventh and elevating the improving Maximus Chudasko to fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Josh D’Ambrosio 32.105

Like most of the other classes on the day, heat three was run in wet conditions. D’Ambrosio again jumped to the lead at the start, but by lap three Thompson had moved to the lead and went on to record a commanding three second win. D’Ambrosio home in second ahead of the recovering Findlay and Clark. A hard charging Liam Pollard put in the drive of the race to move from fourteenth to fifth.  Two contenders out early with mechanical defects, Jabke with a rear bar and Hill with a chain guard.

FASTEST LAP: Zack Thompson 37.155

Thompson had proven to be a real wildcard, just like in KA3 Junior, and he threatened to upset the establishment with a speedy start to the final. Waghorn stepped up to the plate about two thirds race distance to challenge, and took the lead for several laps before Thompson made the decisive move on the final lap. Waghorn home in second ahead of Hill, who had executed 16 brilliant laps to move from fourteenth to third, just ahead of D’Ambrosio. Fahey rounded out the top five in his last VCS race as a junior.

FASTEST LAP: Johnny Hill 32.056

1st Zack Thompson (GOUL), 2nd Toby Waghorn (ELKC), 3rd Johnny Hill (GKCV)

Junior Heavy form up, Zack Thompson (45) and Toby Waghorn (84) on the front row (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Josh D’Ambrosio (OAK), 2nd Toby Waghorn (ELKC), 3rd Johnny Hill (GKCV), 4th Max Fahey (SWEST), 5th Seth Burton (WBOOL)

VIC COMBINED LIGHT (30 Entries)

Vic Combined Light was oversubscribed for the Ballarat circuit and therefore was forced into two groups for qualifying and four groups for the heat races. Whilst most of the opening group of qualifying went faster, Steven Malkin bucked the trend and stuck the 22 kart on pole position! (30.967). Last start winner Mitch Sutej put himself on the front row, ahead of series returnee Gerry Westerveld. Lachies, Swayn and Hill rounded out the top five in a super competitive field.

Heat one (AvD) was a first in many cases, as the format devised specifically for the VCS final round was put into practice for the first time.  Swayn won the battle of the Lachie’s, to lead home Hill in this one. Third belonged to junior graduate Harrison Campbell, who held off a couple of wily veterans in Derrick Rodgers and the pole man Malkin.

FASTEST LAP: Steven Malkin 30.978

Westerveld made the most of his front row start to lead heat one (CvD) for the majority of the wet race. Sutej had to work his way back to the front after dropping to fourth at the start, and took the lead and the win away from Westerveld on lap nine. Jono McKean also slipped by Westerveld late to claim second place. Todd Chambers home in fourth ahead of Andrew Sotiropoulos.

FASTEST LAP: Mitch Sutej 41.302

Rebounding from his opening heat, Westerveld took an all the way win in heat two (AvC). Hill and Malkin were contenders in this heat until things unravelled on lap eight, allowing McKean and Chambers to capitalise on top three finishes. Rodgers continued to put himself in the picture, finishing ahead of Hill, who rolled in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Gerry Westerveld 31.037

Sutej was again impressive as he took a sizeable eight second win in heat two (BvD). The race for second intensified in the last four laps as drivers jostled for position, Campbell getting the better of Dave Menzel on the last lap to lock into second and third. Bill West had his best run of the series on his home track to finish fourth, ahead of Sotiropoulos.

FASTEST LAP: Mitch Sutej 31.124

Sutej was starting to put some sort of weekend together, starting Sunday with a win in heat three (AvB). But this one was a real challenge, as conditions weren’t good and he had immense pressure from Rodgers, who rocketed from seventh to second by lap two. Alex Ryan was solid in third, ahead of Hill and Sotiropoulos.

FASTEST LAP: Derrick Rodgers 35.585

Brushing aside a tough run in his last heat, Swayn was a lights to chequer winner in heat three (CvD). McKean, Westerveld and Chambers were all prominent and finished in that order. Portland Winner Ross Stubbs had his best result of the weekend in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Gerry Westerveld 35.580

The final was set to be a treat as we finally got to throw all the contenders onto the track at once for the first time for the weekend. The top 24 karts started the final, Sutej and Westerveld leading the field away. Westerveld grabbed the lead at the half way mark, before an incident between the two leaders saw Westerveld drop to sixth place. Sutej went on to cap an excellent weekend, taking consecutive round wins. McKean looked on for second, but had to settle for third after a last gasp move from Rodgers for second. Hill finished fourth after running as low as eighth, ahead of Westerveld who salvaged fifth place.

FASTEST LAP: Mitch Sutej 30.902

1st Mitch Sutej (GEEL), 2nd Derrick Rodgers (HAM), 3rd Jono McKean (WBOOL)

Mitchell Sutej leads Derrick Rodgers, Alex Ryan and the rest of the Vic Combined Light field (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Jono McKean (WBOOL), 2nd Andrew Sotiropoulos (OAK), 3rd Ross Stubbs (GIPP), 4th Steven Malkin (PORT), 5th Lachie Swayn (WBOOL)

KA3 SENIOR LIGHT (18 Entries)

Not for the first time in 2019, it was Joel MacPherson who topped the time sheets in KA3 Senior Light qualifying. His time of 30.416 was less than a tenth ahead of the National Champion Jack Bell, with less than two tenths separating the top five. Jobe Stewart signalled his intent in third, ahead of local star Jordan Malcolm in fourth, and Ryan Bettess in fifth.

Tricky conditions greeted drivers for heat one action, with the pole sitter MacPherson dropping down the field quickly to eventually finish tenth. After Bell led early, it was Stewart who took the lead and the comfortable three second win. Bell slid down to seventh as Bettess and Emerson Harvey moved forward to snare second and third. Warrnambool winner Nathan Williams held off Malcolm for fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Matthew Nietz 32.910

Stewart was again pacey in heat two, leading the opening part of the race. But on lap five, drizzle set in, and Stewart was the first to encounter it and ran very wide around turn one, he was lucky to continue. Bettess grabbed the lead momentarily, before the undeniable Bell took over and added to his tally of wins for the series. Bettess was gallant in second, whilst Hamish Allan ran well in the conditions for third. Harvey and the recovering Stewart rounded out the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Ryan Bettess 31.261

Tyre choice became a major factor for heat three, as the field sat divided on the grid. History will say that wets was the right choice, however it made for a long eleven laps for those on slicks, including Bell. Macpherson parked on the chips, turn one lap one. No such problems for Stewart as he took a lights to flag win, despite intense pressure from the energised Malcolm. Harvey continued to build towards a good result with third, finishing ahead of Winston Smith and Matthew Nietz.

FASTEST LAP: Winston Smith 34.957

The local hope, Malcolm made the perfect start and sat at the head of the queue for the opening four laps, before a move from Stewart relieved him of the lead. Stewart took his turn to pace the field, before Bell took over proceedings. Further down the field, MacPherson started to light up the timing as his kart came on at a rapid rate. He was fifth on lap ten and from there he put on one of the performances of the series to charge to victory! Having started eleventh, it was a huge win, and his first of the 2019 VCS. Bell would be forced to stand in his shadow, the roles reversed on this occasion. Stewart banked another strong result in third, ahead of the consistent pair of Bettess and Harvey in fourth and fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Joel MacPherson 30.272

1st Joel MacPherson (OAK), 2nd Jack Bell (OAK), 3rd Jobe Stewart (PORT)

KA3 Senior Light podium (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Jack Bell (OAK), 2nd Jobe Stewart (PORT), 3rd Joel MacPherson (OAK), 4th Nathan Williams (GEEL), 5th Nicholas Ryan (WBOOL)

KA3 SENIOR MEDIUM (13 Entries)

The increased depth of talent in KA3 Senior Medium has made the 2019 series an enthralling battle, with no less than five round winners in the proceeding five rounds. Horsham winner Taine Venables continued to use his momentum to take pole position (30.930). Remo Luciani held off Daniel Hookway for second, Scott King and Todd Chambers rounding out the top five.

Venables continued to go from strength to strength as he eased away to win by just over two seconds in heat one. Luciani, Hookway, King and Mitch Mackay staged an enthralling battle for the minors, Mackay having missed half of qualifying and ending up at the back end of the top ten. Hookway prevailed over Luciani for second at the flag, King holding off Mackay for fourth.

FASTEST LAP: Taine Venables

Not for the first time for the day, tyre choice was critical for heat two, and unfortunately a late change back to slicks forced Venables to start from the rear of the grid. The doors opened for Luciani and Hookway, and neither needed an invitation. Luciani upstaged his younger competitor, leaving Hookway to settle for second. King was very much in contention but took the chequered in third, ahead of Chris Thomas and a rebounding Venables.

FASTEST LAP: Taine Venables 31.488

A new day arrived at Ballarat, however the same changing and unpredictable weather conditions hung around. Many drivers were tossing up the safety of wets or to take a gamble on slicks for heat three. Most of the front runners opted for wets. You didn’t have to wait long for the action as an incident at turn one took out Venables, Luciani and King. Venables was subsequently DQ’d for his part. Thomas led the first circulation, before being shuffled to second by Hookway on the second lap. Mackay was on slicks and as the race wore on, he got faster and faster. In the end it came down to a drag race to the flag, and the slick shod kart of Mackay got the better of Hookway for the win. Chambers, Ryan Cook and Thomas all had breathing space as they filled the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Peter Gigis 33.162

The scene was set for a thrilling final, and nobody left disappointed. Luciani led the opening two laps, before he was overtaken by two of the young tyros in Mackay and Venables. From there the two youngsters staged a battle that went the full distance, exchanging places numerous times. Mackay made it stick on lap thirteen and held sway from there, despite the blowtorch being applied by Venables. Luciani rounded out the podium in third. Hookway was home in fourth, only half a second from the lead, whilst Chambers finished well in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Todd Chambers 31.006

1st Mitch Mackay (SWEST), 2nd Taine Venables (BALL), 3rd Remo Luciani (WIMM)

Mitchell Mackay, 1st KA3 Senior Medium (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Mitch Mackay (SWEST), 2nd Taine Venables (BALL), 3rd Remo Luciani (WIMM), 4th Daniel Hookway (WBOOL), 5th Chris Thomas (GEEL)

CADET 9 (14 Entries)

Cadet 9 qualifying saw one of the biggest upsets of the weekend, as P plater Aston Hill announced his arrival as a front runner with a stunning pole position (34.247). Hill’s achievement came at the head of a stacked top five, with three 2019 round winners in the top five. Two time round winner Mathew Basso timed in second, ahead of Horsham victor Will Calleja. Ewan Anderson continued his strong series in fourth ahead of Warrnambool winner Noah Enright.

Heat one proved that qualifying was no flash in the pan for Hill, as he wound the 44P kart up for a comfortable lights to flag win. The top five remained the same, albeit rejigged. Anderson moved forward to be the runner up after a good battle for track position with Basso. Calleja and Enright raced closely for the early part of the race, Calleja getting the upper hand to finish in fourth, Enright in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Will Calleja 34.291

Basso jumped to an early lead at the start of heat two, leading for several laps before the cavalry arrived. Lap nine saw SA’s Enright grab the lead, and Anderson retire from the race. Enright went on to win, ahead of Basso and Calleja. Hill settled in fourth after being shuffled around by his more experienced rivals, whilst the continually improving Riley Harrison posted a fifth place finish.

FASTEST LAP: Noah Enright 34.261

Heat three would see the youngsters forced to make a choice on tyres on the grid. Wets proved to be the right decision, as evidenced by the slicks shod kart of Anderson parked up at turn one. Enright jumped to the front at the start and never relinquished the top spot. Basso also dropped down the field at the start, as Harrison leapt up into second. Lap seven saw Hill and Calleja move up to second and third, Calleja crossing the line in second, Hill third. Harrison was a very decent fourth, ahead of Chelsea Humphrey in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Mathew Basso 36.243

Hill re-emerged as a serious contender in the final, grabbing the early ascendancy over his more fancied rivals. Enright gave chase to Hill, and on lap twelve he pounced to make a race winning move. Whilst Hill plotted his move to wrestle back the lead, a lapped kart disadvantaged him and he lost touch with the speedy Enright. Enright raced to the chequer with breathing space, whilst Hill came under increased pressure from Anderson as he capped a super impressive weekend with second place. Anderson finished on the podium in third, ahead of series combatants Basso and Calleja.

FASTEST LAP: Mathew Basso 34.127

1st Noah Enright (BGKC), 2nd Aston Hill (GIPP), 3rd Ewan Anderson (PORT)

Cadet 9 podium (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Will Calleja (OAK), 2nd Mathew Basso (OAK), 3rd Ewan Anderson (PORT), 4th Chelsea Humphrey (ELKC), 5th Aston Hill (GIPP)

VIC COMBINED MEDIUM (20 Entries)

The Vic Combined Medium field just wasn’t right at Ballarat, following the tragic passing of Wimmera’s Brett Buckley in a motorcycle accident between rounds. The much loved Mr Fluoro would’ve been watching over proceedings.

Remo Luciani laid down the marker (31.670) in a class he has been dominant in all series. Andrew Harvey has been one of Luciani’s biggest challengers throughout, and he took second ahead of Phil Zentai. James Head returned to VCS at his home track and put in a solid time for fourth, with Mick Angwin rounding out the top five.

Heat one will show a comfortable win for Luciani, however the result doesn’t tell how hard he had to work for this one. Shuffled down to eighth at the start, the master took seven laps to assert himself at the top of the order, before going on to win. Harvey had led the laps before Luciani took over, and settled for the runners up spot. Zentai started and finished third, ahead of Vern Kranz and Brett Jenkin, the latter dropping down from the heavy class.

FASTEST LAP: Remo Luciani 31.576

Luciani and Harvey stayed line of stern in heat two, maintaining the top two positions for the full journey. Whilst Zentai and Jenkin slipped down the pecking order, Kranz made steady progress to finish third, taking Angwin with him all the way. Fifth was another solid run for Head.

FASTEST LAP: Remo Luciani 31.805

More of the same in heat three as the top four maintained their starting position for the 11 lap duration. Luciani from Harvey, Zentai from Kranz, and Jenkin home in fifth after overhauling Zach Marshall mid race.

FASTEST LAP: Andrew Harvey 32.188

The final belonged to the master from Horsham, Luciani, as he once again blitzed the field to claim another round win. It was in fact his fifth consecutive round win, and could have been a full sweep if not for a mishap at Warrnambool. The race for the minors was anything but clear cut, as Harvey, Zentai and Jenkin went to work. With 2 laps to go Jenkin made a decisive move to claim second, ahead of Harvey, who had been at the pointy end all weekend. Alex Baker showed his true potential, earning fourth after rectifying a bent chassis, and a weekend best result of fifth in the final for Ballarat president Mal Mason.

FASTEST LAP: Remo Luciani 31.676

1st Remo Luciani (WIMM), 2nd Brett Jenkin (ROCH), 3rd Andrew Harvey (MGKC)

Remo Luciani leads Brett Jenkin (6) and Phillip Zantai, Vic Combined Medium (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Remo Luciani (WIMM), 2nd Andrew Harvey (MGKC), 3rd Alex Baker (WIMM), 4th Phil Zentai (SWKC), 5th Michael Mifsud (GEEL)

KA4 JUNIOR LIGHT (11 Entries)

There was a lot to play for in KA4 Junior Light at the final round, with the points score very tight at the top. Matthew Domaschenz set the quick time (34.279) in qualifying, just edging out returning Ballarat gun Joe Fawcett in wet conditions. Jake Santalucia was solid in third, ahead of series aspirant Christian Cowie and Jarred Farrell.

Better conditions in heat one made for an interesting race, with Domaschenz, Santalucia and Fawcett all taking turns leading the race. Mid race saw Fawcett assert himself as the man to beat, going on to win. Second place was well earned for Santalucia. Domaschenz crossed the line third, but was subsequently hit with a penalty after a scuffle with Cowie. The penalty elevated Cowie to third, ahead of Farrell. Brocklan Parker continued his apprenticeship in juniors, rolling in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Joe Fawcett 31.154

Santalucia leapt into the lead at the start of heat two, continuing to run strongly until Fawcett slipped by on lap three. Fawcett went on to win comfortably, Santalucia though would settle for third after succumbing to the rebounding Domaschenz. Cowie retired from fourth on lap seven, elevating Farrell into that finishing position. Local Domenic Kucina looked threatening on his run to fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Joe Fawcett 31.135

Heat three was a carbon copy of heat two, as Santalucia took the opportunity to lead early. However, it wasn’t long before Fawcett moved ahead and held on for a narrow win. This time Santalucia was closer to Fawcett’s speed and finished second, clear of his nearest competitor. Domaschenz banked more points in third, ahead of Kucina and Farrell rounding out the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Joe Fawcett 31.411

Fawcett’s recent experience in the Australian Kart Championship was evident over the weekend, and no more so than in the final. He was operating at a level above his competitors, and translated that into a 7.4 second win. Santalucia again proved he will be a big threat in 2020, capping a successful weekend with second place. The battle between Cowie and Domaschenz, series combatants, had serious heat all weekend, and it culminated in the last lap of the final. Turn one of the final lap saw contact between the two rivals, with Cowie benefitting and crossing the line in third. However stewards reversed the order, promoting Domaschenz to third and dropping Cowie to fourth. The consistent Farrell again rounded the top five out.

FASTEST LAP: Joe Fawcett 30.972

1st Joe Fawcett (BALL), 2nd Jake Santalucia (OAK), 3rd Matthew Domaschenz (GEEL)

Joe Fawcett took a huge 7.4s win in the KA4 Junior Light final (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Matthew Domaschenz (GEEL), 2nd Christian Cowie (SGKC), 3rd Jake Santalucia (OAK), 4th Harrison Campbell (GEEL), 5th Jake Krasna (MILD)

CADET 12 (23 Entries)

Less than a second separated the top thirteen drivers in Cadet 12 qualifying, this class promising to be outstanding once again. Cadel Ambrose topped the time sheets with his time of 33.257, closely shadowed by Tyce Hodge, who was less than half a tenth off the time. Lewis Francis made his first appearance in the 2019 series and slotted into third place. Xavier Avramides laid down the fourth fastest time, ahead of Horsham winner Angus Hall.

Ambrose made a perfect start to heat one, however the start wasn’t so kind to Hodge and Francis as they plummeted down the order, Francis to the rear. Ambrose found his groove and went on unheaded to clinch the win by just over 3 seconds. Hall capitalised on the messy start to grab second place, a position he maintained to the flag. Not to be denied, Hodge made his way all the way back to third after bottoming out in ninth on the opening lap. Rusty Ponting made a welcome return to VCS to take fourth in this one, ahead of Lochie Farrell who had started ninth.

FASTEST LAP: Cadel Ambrose 33.188

Ambrose once again controlled proceedings in heat two, leading all the way despite having Hodge in his back pocket for the race distance. Whilst Ambrose and Hodge held their posts for the duration, Hall had to work for his third place. After dropping to sixth early, Hall had to clear Jenson Ristevski late in the race to seal his position. Ristevski held onto third in an improved performance, finishing ahead of Farrell in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Cadel Ambrose 33.154

Hodge was again in the wars at the start of heat three, as his front row start turned into sixth place at the end of the opening lap. Hall was the big winner, as he jumped into the lead and withstood the pressure of the ensuing pack. Hall led until the final circulation when Ambrose snuck by to continue his perfect results for the weekend. Hall finished a very close second, with daylight before the resilient Hodge crossed the line in third. Ristevski and Ponting continued to build with fourth and fifth place finishes.

FASTEST LAP: Angus Hall 33.340

The final rolled out with Ambrose sitting on the perfect score for the weekend, and he went on with it to win the round. A deserved win after driving superbly all weekend. Hodge was once again right on Ambrose’s tail for the full distance, recording a very respectable second place given his setbacks in the heats. Hall was next across the line for third, holding off Ristevski for the final podium spot. Francis made his way back towards the pointy end, salvaging fifth place.

FASTEST LAP: Tyce Hodge 33.254

1st Cadel Ambrose (OAK), 2nd Tyce Hodge (GEEL), 3rd Angus Hall (OAK)

Cadet Ambrose wins Cadet 12 ahead of Tyce Hodge (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Angus Hall (OAK), 2nd Cadel Ambrose (OAK), 3rd Tyce Hodge (GEEL), 4th Leo Iannella (GKCSA), 5th Xavier Avramides (OAK)

TAG HEAVY (9 Entries)

After battling a neck complaint at the last round in Horsham, the dominant driver in the class, Scott King resumed his position at the top, recording a pole time of 33.357. Jaymi Mackay parked her kart on the front row in her best performance of the series. Horsham winner Billy Westerveld held down third position, ahead of Ballarat’s Paul Feely in fourth. Nick Roberts rounded out the top five.

Scott King controlled proceedings in the opening heat, leading from start to finish. Westerveld moved up to second place as Mackay drifted down the order. Adam King moved forward after a below par qualifying to clinch third. Feely looked promising in fourth, whilst Aaron Jackson moved into the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Scott King 30.488

Heat two was a lot closer than the opening heat, as Westerveld applied the pressure to Scott King. Westerveld first shook off Adam King before giving chase to Scott, coming up two tenths short in a good race. Adam held on for third, ahead of Roberts and Jackson in fourth and fifth respectively.

FASTEST LAP: Billy Westerveld 30.583

The opening lap of heat three was headlined by a shunt at the old commentary corner between Nik Schmidt and Roberts. The kart of Schmidt was broken on the left hand front corner, whilst Roberts lasted just the one lap before retiring. That was the real action of the race, as Scott King and Westerveld held sway at the front of the field. Adam King shook off Jackson early to grab third, Jackson finishing ahead of Feely to round out the top five.

FASTEST LAP: Scott King 30.737

The final was relatively uneventful, as Scott King took a comfortable victory to wrap up yet another VCS crown. Westerveld was not disgraced in second, and will look forward to a big push in the 2020 series. Adam King grabbed another podium, Cobden his only miss of the series. Jackson and Feely traded positions on the opening couple of laps, until Jackson got the upper hand for fourth. Feely finished the series strong on his home track in fifth.

FASTEST LAP: Scott King 30.784

1st Scott King (PORT), 2nd Billy Westerveld (ROCH), 3rd Adam King (PORT)

TaG Heavy winner Scott King (pic – Pace Images)

SERIES RESULT

1st Scott King (PORT), Adam King (PORT), 3 Aaron Jackson (ELKC), 4th Nik Schmidt (BALL), 5th Paul Feely (BALL)

BALLARAT PRIZE WINNERS:

DPE KART SUPERSTORE $100 VOUCHERS

Joe Fawcett
Samuel Gibson
Archer Warrick
Remo Luciani
Benjamin Moss

DPE TYRE DRAW

Todd Chambers

PATRIZICORSE BRIDGESTONE TYRES

Laura Fahey
Ryan Newborn

DUNLOP KARTSPORT DK17 VOUCHERS

$50 VOUCHER

Ethan Brown
James McNamara
Lauren Ferguson
Leigh Everitt
Ryan Cook
Andrew McNamara

$25 VOUCHER
Isaac Woodhouse
Riley Jabke
Maya McNamara
Steven Malkin
Thomas Carrig
Hamish Allan
Andrew Harvey
James Head
Chris Thomas
Taine Venables
Peter Burton
Andrew Stubbs

KARTWORX $100 K1 CUSTOM RACESUIT VOUCHER

Cadet: Angus Hall
Junior: Samuel Davies
Senior: Scott King

(pic – Pace Images)

SERIES PRIZE WINNERS

REMO RACING IAME ENGINES
IAME KA100:      Ray Dumesney
IAME X30:           Phillip Eastham

ALLSTAR GRAPHICS $300 VOUCHER
David Menzel

2020 SEASON PASS

Matthew Crane
Jake Santalucia

Plus almost 100 free round passes for everyone that did all 6 rounds in 2019.

(pic – Pace Images)

That’s a wrap of another massive weekend, and season of racing, with some huge performances and awesome close racing. We look forward to the 2020 Victorian Country Series kicking off in Portland on February 15 & 16.

Thanks to our Series Sponsors:

  • DPE KART SUPERSTORE & MG TIRES
  • RPM PARTS & KARTS
  • TONYKART AUSTRALIA & BARON ENGINE DEVELOPMENTS
  • KFC
  • REMO RACING & IAME ENGINES
  • DUNLOP KARTSPORT & ROCK OIL
  • PATRIZICORSE, VORTEX KART ENGINES & BRIDGESTONE KARTING AUST
  • ALLSTAR GRAPHICS
  • KARTWORX & K1 RACEGEAR
  • PACE IMAGES
  • AHR MEDIA
  • WIMMERA DESIGN & PRINT
  • BENDIGO COMMUNITY BANK
(pic – Pace Images)

Series Points

TAG 125 Light

# Total points Name
1 4535 Jordan Rae
2 4308 Curt Sera
3 4306 Nathan Williams
4 4145 James Sera
5 3867 William Carroll
6 3811 Connor Farr
7 3348 Maverick Benson
8 3019 Luke Fong
9 2266 Benjamen Delaney
10 2224 Nick Percat
11 2215 Jaymi Mackay
12 1809 Benjamin Moss
13 1711 Benjamin Bizzarri
14 1706 Jaiden Bridge
15 1604 Breanna Lanza
16 1585 Kai Allen
17 1563 Jake Spencer
18 1349 Lucas O’brien
19 1095 Shane Moreland
20 1066 Rhys Kemp
21 987 Ryan Morgan
22 895 Blake Purdie
23 880 Samuel Downing
24 827 Daniel Rochford
25 761 Alexander Barallon
26 747 Kyle Rethus
27 677 Harley Benson
28 575 Paul Trengove
29 443 Anthony Mrhar
30 421 Ray-yu Wang
31 396 Matthew Wall
32 289 Ben Taylor
33 235 Liam Hunter
34 165 Rhys Duncan
35 113 Matthew Evans
36 107 Mark Domaschenz

KA4 Junior Heavy

# Total points Name
1 5666 Joshua D’ambrosio
2 5077 Toby Waghorn
3 5016 Johnny Hill
4 3937 Maximus Fahey
5 3754 Seth Burton
6 3568 Braden Clark
7 3562 Riley Jabke
8 3256 Liam Pollard
9 3254 Jay Racovalis
10 3011 Samuel Davies
11 2596 Charlee Richardson
12 2439 Maximus Chudasko
13 1956 Daniel Golightly
14 1810 Grace Dunmore
15 1803 Adam Henriksen
16 1589 Joshua Clay
17 1456 Zackary Thompson
18 1417 Zach Findlay
19 1385 Lachlan Clark
20 1307 Laura Fahey
21 1246 Robbie Turmine
22 1185 Joshua Horder
23 736 Jett Rendell
24 521 Ella Dunmore
25 457 Jack Johnson
26 358 Hamish Tonkin
27 356 Cooper Fletcher
28 331 Nathan Pozo
29 272 Ashton Cattach-pizzuti

Victorian Combined Light

# Total points Name
1 5131 Jonathan Mckean
2 4540 Andrew Sotiropoulos
3 4109 Ross Stubbs
4 3815 Steven Malkin
5 3748 Lachlan Swayn
6 3564 Mitchell Sutej
7 3195 Joseph Clough
8 3007 Lachlan Hill
9 3005 David Menzel
10 2957 Derrick Rodgers
11 2857 Aidan Solomon
12 2579 Brock Rae
13 2412 Todd Chambers
14 2309 Terry Rankin
15 2276 Alex Ryan
16 2055 Jacob Dowlin
17 1898 Bill West
18 1810 Jeremy Kiensrod
19 1609 Shayne Penhall
20 1540 Mark Shrubb
21 1505 Daniel Findlay
22 1315 Gerry Westerveld
23 1263 James Mcnamara
24 1225 Jesse Yoannidis
25 1144 Corey Mccullagh
26 1142 Aaron Neilson
27 1080 Pat Thomas
28 1066 Zeke Sloan
29 1048 Mitchel Arrow
30 1031 Caitlin Clough
31 999 Phillip Eastham
32 966 Bradley Matulic
33 854 Harrison Campbell
34 821 Andrew Rae
35 723 Jakub Fitzsimmons
36 633 Jake Mackenzie
37 629 Greg Dunmore
38 570 Ella Dunmore
39 570 Maya Mcnamara
40 489 Jordan Sanderson
41 477 Daniel Linke
42 437 Bradley Vaughan
43 240 Matthew Evans
44 230 Craig Munro
45 201 Elton Treloar
46 164 James Macdonald
47 150 Christopher Davis
48 137 Brodie Stradbrook
49 117 Timothy Evans

KA3 Senior Light

# Total points Name
1 5685 Jack Bell
2 5479 Jobe Stewart
3 4482 Joel Macpherson
4 3500 Nathan Williams
5 3111 Nicholas Ryan
6 2882 Hamish Allan
7 2866 Bryce Woollard
8 2838 Jordan Malcolm
9 2783 Winston Smith
10 2512 Corey Herbertson
11 2348 Jaxson Cox
12 2270 Adam Pasek
13 2188 Ryan Bettess
14 2108 Cooper Johnstone
15 2074 Matthew Nietz
16 1814 Sophie Mansbridge
17 1723 Lauren Ferguson
18 1546 Scott Mceachran
19 1538 Nicholas Trebilcock
20 1496 Jason Douglas
21 1274 Thomas Carrig
22 1153 Natasha Emmins
23 1110 Kye Belton
24 1089 Emerson Harvey
25 926 Bethany Koch
26 733 Jack Micallef
27 673 Nikki Watson
28 546 Lachlan Naismith
29 505 Ryan Morgan
30 475 Keean Ferguson
31 335 Ella Dunmore
32 293 Tylah Haywood
33 249 Evan Ferentinos
34 242 Ashley Lear
35 235 Nerinda Beard
36 232 Alex Killeen
37 162 Shane Moreland
38 142 Taylah Allen
39 83 Troy Moreland

KA3 Senior Medium

# Total points Name
1 5228 Mitchell Mackay
2 5114 Taine Venables
3 4953 Remo Luciani
4 4830 Daniel Hookway
5 4297 Christopher Thomas
6 4085 Todd Chambers
7 4060 Scott King
8 3176 Ryan Cook
9 3175 Jackson Hodgetts
10 3101 Aaron Jackson
11 2590 Max Green
12 2064 Peter Gigis
13 1475 Trent Levi
14 1377 Keean Ferguson
15 947 Alex Ryan
16 662 Brayden Flood
17 558 Andrew Johnstone
18 508 Derrick Rodgers
19 352 Mitchell Branson
20 340 Joshua Horder
21 331 Jason Mckay
22 271 Zachary Marshall
23 270 Justin Bonacci
24 222 Ben Chapman

Cadet 9

# Total points Name
1 5375 William Calleja
2 5292 Mathew Basso
3 4696 Ewan Anderson
4 4624 Chelsea Humphrey
5 4147 Aston Hill
6 3431 Riley Harrison
7 3225 Cadel Taylor
8 2776 Cayden Humphrey
9 2630 Noah Enright
10 2084 William Brinsley
11 1806 Mitchell Burgemeister
12 1332 Lewis Kucina
13 1210 Xavier Cain
14 1163 Oliver Wickham
15 964 Jordan Wickham
16 946 Mitchell Soderstrom
17 931 Kobie Wilson
18 853 Samuel March
19 841 Cayden Beacham
20 797 Jensen Marold
21 734 Dominic Mercuri
22 647 Koby O’shannassy
23 601 Jett Taormina
24 571 Renee Dvorak
25 398 Cruz Capitanio

Victorian Combined Medium

# Total points Name
1 6416 Remo Luciani
2 5179 Andrew Harvey
3 4689 Alex Baker
4 3796 Phillip Zentai
5 3535 Michael Mifsud
6 3443 Barry Clough
7 2784 Vern Kranz
8 2716 Zachary Marshall
9 1931 Brett Buckley
10 1843 Jonathon Wilson
11 1824 Andrew Chapman
12 1750 Malcolm Mason
13 1726 Michael Angwin
14 1383 Leigh Everitt
15 1234 Sam Newell
16 1166 Jackson Barbary
17 1147 James Stewart
18 1127 Brett Jenkin
19 1026 Billy Westerveld
20 764 Chris Wright
21 753 Josh Tanner
22 725 Wayne Armistead
23 649 James Head
24 603 Luke Mcpherson
25 597 Jackson Leitch
26 576 Daniel Boorman
27 547 Blake Graham
28 500 David Musgrave
29 401 Jason Kilcullen
30 329 David Stewart
31 271 William Leitch
32 270 Sean Martin

KA4 Junior Light

# Total points Name
1 5415 Matthew Domaschenz
2 5329 Christian Cowie
3 5128 Jake Santalucia
4 4358 Harrison Campbell
5 4137 Jake Krasna
6 3808 Jarred Farrell
7 3208 Thomas Patching
8 2633 Riley George
9 2272 Brocklan Parker
10 2243 Parker Scott
11 1802 Jenson Teleskivi
12 1604 Joe Fawcett
13 1367 Oscar Maloney
14 1204 Robbie Turmine
15 1033 Domenic Kucina
16 979 Joshua Hee Keng
17 919 Michael Tarbotton
18 878 Elliot Bellars
19 865 Brodie Thomson
20 827 Mason Kelly
21 740 Ethan Brown
22 704 Shaun Clover
23 685 Will Missen
24 619 Koby Samuelson
25 617 Salvatore Imbrogno
26 596 Kobi Williams
27 340 Tyson White
28 333 Robert Graham
29 291 Brayden Parkinson

Cadet 12

# Total points Name
1 5569 Angus Hall
2 5484 Cadel Ambrose
3 4219 Tyce Hodge
4 4022 Leo Iannella
5 3965 Xavier Avramides
6 3449 Ben Holliday
7 3217 Jenson Ristevski
8 3207 Lochlan Farrell
9 2605 Peter Bouzinelos
10 2391 Hunter Salvatore
11 2365 Rusty Ponting
12 2240 Anthony Capobianco
13 1950 Ryan Newborn
14 1832 Ethan Briggs
15 1777 Brocklan Parker
16 1523 Rock Han
17 1496 Alexander Yoannidis
18 1452 Zach Findlay
19 1369 Domenic Kucina
20 1293 Levi Dauncey
21 1095 Harry Arnett
22 1089 Joanne Ciconte
23 1040 Charlie Evans
24 985 Nathan Emmins
25 975 Jack Szewczuk
26 932 Darcy Heyne
27 840 James Snaith
28 797 Juan-felipe Forero
29 775 Koby Samuelson
30 737 Lewis Francis
31 735 Jesse Lacey
32 726 Jacob Chandler
33 684 Bradley Majman
34 661 Kristian Janev
35 652 Fraser Carr
36 571 James Anagnostiadis
37 553 Archer Warrick
38 545 Caleb Spence
39 525 Toby Dvorak
40 515 Mattia Marzella
41 476 Mitchell Burgemeister
42 475 Thomas Schmidt
43 470 Wesley Bowden
44 465 Samuel March
45 386 Oliver Wickham
46 376 Jordan Wickham
47 323 Harrison Zeuner
48 309 Benjamin Munro
49 277 Nate Young
50 249 Brock Fewins
51 219 Akasha Mceachran
52 199 Alexander Macqueen
53 174 Kai Layland
54 150 Jackson Stone
55 133 Lachlan Sharpe
56 121 Hayley Fewins
57 87 Oscar Maloney

TAG 125 Heavy

# Total points Name
1 6148 Scott King
2 5836 Adam King
3 4582 Aaron Jackson
4 4189 Nikola Schmidt
5 3726 Paul Feely
6 3693 Nicholas Roberts
7 3374 Raymond Dumesny
8 3305 Billy Westerveld
9 3260 Beau Humphrey
10 1656 Glenn Croxford
11 885 Jaymi Mackay
12 657 Bjorn Schultheiss
13 593 Dylan Collett
14 540 Stephane Majman
15 525 Travis Chapman
16 484 Brad Trott
17 352 Jerremy Cusack

Victorian Combined Masters

# Total points Name
1 5932 Phil Smith
2 5529 Ashley Mitchell
3 4264 Leon Forrest
4 4161 Peter Gigis
5 3805 Matthew Crane
6 3593 John Page
7 3268 Andrew Stubbs
8 2917 Vern Kranz
9 2696 Greg Ord
10 2522 Alan Roberts
11 2504 Ronald Taylor
12 2401 Phillip Stradbrook
13 2239 Garry Haywood
14 2123 Barry Golightly
15 1875 Murray Swayn
16 1553 Ian Branson
17 1458 Kevin Harvey
18 1139 Anthony Taylor
19 936 Andrew Mcnamara
20 885 Lloyd Wilson
21 746 Peter Burton
22 737 Carl Gibson
23 662 Stephen Marshall
24 613 Glenn Riddell
25 556 Andrew Chapman
26 547 Roger Han
27 420 James Stewart
28 401 Amanda Branson
29 398 Andrew Purcell
30 289 Matt Parker
31 249 Andrew Jackson
32 176 John Owen
33 168 Brett Buckley
34 166 Campbell Mcmillan
35 144 Trevor Pevitt

KA3 Junior

# Total points Name
1 5484 Jaxon Johnstone
2 5343 Bronson Boult
3 4819 Ethan Brown
4 4219 Isaac Woodhouse
5 4124 Ethan Bray
6 3533 Samuel Gibson
7 2187 Jordi Belton
8 2029 Riley Jabke
9 1931 Brayden Stewart
10 1926 Jake Santalucia
11 1924 Will Harper
12 1607 Fletcher Bellars
13 1504 James Lodge
14 1242 Patrick Short
15 1205 Zackary Thompson
16 1123 Nicholas Sacco
17 1109 Tyson White
18 722 Samuel Davies
19 616 Harrison Campbell
20 565 Kai Upiter
21 466 Lotem Ben Yosef
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