Leitch & Frazer Share NZ Wins

Successful KartSport New Zealand graduates Brendon Leitch from Invercargill and Billy Frazer from Auckland won a race apiece at the latest round of the Giltrap Group/Carter’s Tyre Service-backed, iRacing platform-based ‘Virtual Club Race’ series held on Tuesday evening.

Third round winner Ryan Wood from Wellington was quick in qualifying, claiming pole position for the first of two races round the virtual version of Japan’s 3.7km Okayama International Circuit in identical spec Mazda MX5s.

First race start as a capacity grid of Mazda MX5s accelerate away from the line (pic – KartSport NZ/iRacing)

However after a race-long battle, eventually resolved in Frazer’s favour in the first ‘fastest-from-the-front’ 15 lap race on the evening, a technical issue meant that Wood did not feature in the second – reverse top 22 grid – race.

That left Race 1 winner, and fellow young gun Frazer – currently leading the points standings in the NZ Formula Ford single-seater championship – to work his way up to third place (after starting from P22) and cross the finish line within sight of race winner and former KartSport and Castrol Toyota Racing Series front-runner Brendon Leitch (who started from P8 on the grid).

Pole sitter Ryan Wood holds off eventual Race 1 winner Billy Frazer early on (pic – KartSport NZ/iRacing)

Second was pole-sitter, and yet another successful graduate of the country’s KartSport scene, young Taupo-based international single-seater category ace, Conrad Clark.

After competing in everything from Trophy Trucks to Radical SR8 sports cars over preceding weeks KartSport New Zealand’s ‘Virtual Club Day’ event organiser Travis Smith this week chose Mazda’s MX5 coupe as the ‘spec’ car.

The MX5 certainly produced some close racing and as Billy Frazer told commentator David Sera afterwards, he thought it was an inspired choice.

“Really,’ he said, “by picking a low-powered car on a circuit with some long straights but also some technical sections you had the perfect formula for some great racing.”

Race 1 winner Billy Frazer starting the reverse grid second race from P22 on the grid (pic – KartSport NZ/iRacing)

Unfortunately the close racing was  not without its share of on-track incidents. Top Wellington Junior, Ben Stewart, set the third quickest lap time in qualifying but was punted off the track on the first lap of the first race, and had to drive back through the field for a hard-won sixth place after having to pit to repair damage to his car.

With the on-going success of these Giltrap Group & Carter’s Tyre Service-backed ‘Virtual Club Days,’ KartSport New Zealand is committed to run more – at least until the Government signals that it is ready to allow kart clubs  around the country to run club meetings at their tracks again!

Race 2 winner Brendon Leitch passing Conrad Clark for the lead of the second race (pic – KartSport NZ/iRacing)

RESULTS

Qualifying

  1. Ryan Wood
  2. Billy Frazer
  3. Ben Stewart
  4. Paul Blomqvist
  5. Corey Ross
  6. Corey Green

Race  1: (15 laps)

  1. Billy Frazer
  2. Ryan Wood
  3. Taylor Cockerton
  4. Braedan Snowden
  5. Kieran Woods
  6. Ben Stewart

Race 2: (15 laps reverse top 22 grid)

  1. Brendon Leitch
  2. Conrad Clark
  3. Billy Frazer
  4. Blake Knowles
  5. Timothy Sillay
  6. Izaak Fletcher

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