by Daniel Harvey
KARTERS GO FOR GOLD AT DUNEDIN MASTERS GAMES MEET
The numbers might have been down a little on those of two years ago but the karters who did make the effort to travel to Dunedin for the 2020 New Zealand Masters Games had a ball as part of a 5000-strong group of athletes aged from 20 years to (well) over 90 who competed in a number of sports from February 01-09.
Drizzle welcomed competitors on Day 1 of the Karting competition at KartSport Dunedin’s Silverstream Kart Raceway on Saturday Feb 08 but the sun came out for the first heat and stayed for the rest of the weekend.
Norman Wilde dominated 125cc Rotax Max Heavy from local icon Neil Shearer with newcomer to the sport Tony Rankin coming in 3rd but winning Gold in his age group of 30-39.
The 125cc Rotax Max Light class saw three very new drivers take the track and the racing was close, and despite only one meeting under his belt Brett McKechnie took 30/39yrs Gold from another new driver Jeff Prattley with Michael MacDonald showed good pace in his son’s borrowed gear to mix it with the younger lads and take Gold in 40/49yrs.
Darren Claridge took Gold in Open, but there was a four-way battle for top honours in the Briggs LO206 Light class with three different race winners over the nine heats and it all going down to the final to see who got overall bragging rights.
Despite a dnf in that race, Blake Greenfield had done enough for Gold from Dunedin’s Barrie Lay with Paul Bugler just missing out on Silver having to settle for Bronze.
In the Briggs LO206 Heavy division Daniel Harvey mixed it all weekend with the Lights and took Gold in under 50s from Matthew Broughan, with Neil Butts taking Gold in 50yrs plus from Peter Richardson.
The weekend was finished off with the traditional Grand Prix with Brett McKechnie taking the Rotax Max title from Michael MacDonald, and Daniel Harvey winning Briggs LO206 from Blake Greenfield and Paul Bugler.
Karting returns to the Masters Games schedule when the Games return to Dunedin in February 2022.