The Inaugural Dee Vine Estate Cup was held at Griffith Kart Club across the weekend of April 9 to 11. The three day event honored the late Joseph Bianchini and carried a massive prize pool of around $25,000 – including three new Arrow karts.
Qualifying on Friday night was held under lights, 64 karters from around NSW and even Victoria taking to the Tarbogan track in 10 classes. Racing continued on Saturday afternoon and into the night with the Finals held on Sunday morning.
Young local talent Jospeh Bianchini made a clean sweep of the Novices class to take the first place trophy. However, the final saw an emerging local youngster, Brodie Tropeano, driving brilliantly, taking the lead off the starting line, and holding through the first few corners. Bianchini’s speed soon shone through, diving under down the back straight and taking off. Tropenao drove home for a very deserved second while newcomer Koa Patten from Albury won the Novice P-Plate class.
Thirteen competitors contested the Rookies division for 9 to 12 year olds. Mitchell Love showed his talent in qualifying under lights with new comer, P-Plate driver Eli Patten, qualifying second. There was brilliant racing between local boy Joseph Belardo and Mitchell Love (Canberra) battling at the front of the pack all weekend, swapping victories in the opening heats. The final was an amazing battle with Belrado taking the lead until the 3rd last corner where a late dive from Love, amongst lapping traffic, saw Belardo in the bark chips and Love the victor. Charlie Curran (Orange) was rewarded with his great driving in a very hotly contested pack with 2nd, George Profound Nader 3rd and the rising talent Jack Charles in fourth. Eli Patten (Albury) won the Rookies P Plate Division, starting from 13th in the final and finishing 7th overall in the race.
The Junior Light class saw Imogen Radburn (Nowra) battle the boys, Adam Hayne & Caleb Hefren. Herfren was leading into the final, but an incident on the first corner saw him resigned to the sidelines, very upset. Radburn went on to be awarded the 1st place trophy.
On the track at the same times as the Lights, Junior Heavy saw a convincing performance by Will Jones, clean sweeping all the events. Addison Radburn was second and Adam Hayne in third.
In Junior Performance, Costa Toparis (Goulburn) improved from a slow start at the festival, but come away the trophy winner, showing his amazing talent. Joshua Hart (Canberra) was a strong second, while close racing all weekend from the remaining pack saw local Luca Belardo grab 3rd in the final.
TaG Restricted Light was won by Conner Dunn, with an extremely fast and dominating performance. Trying his hardest all weekend, but unable to catch Dunn, Michael Steer lived up to his name, and drove very well for second, while Kevin Mullavey’s Rotax was no match for the two IAMEs out in front.
Chaise Soltaire took out the final to grab the trophy in TaG Restricted Heavy. The final saw the front two runners for the weekend failing to make the starting line. When sent out to race, both experienced engine problems. With David Galley winning every heat, but unable to take the new grid, Soltaire, a local, was able to use his skill, and ensure the victory.
4SS Heavy saw Richard Drooger (Parkes) clean sweep a hotly contested division. Wayne Ogolive drove well all weekend, steering himself into second with Marcus Everett leading the rest of the pack for third. William Everett saved his best drive for the final to place fourth.
Senior Performance Heavy saw a very fast Brett Robinson (Orange) take the weekend. The first few heats saw Danny Wright and Trevor Whitby take leading roles with Robinson in chase. Incidents in heat 3 saw Wright disqualified for a loose chain guard, thus sending him back in the field for the pre final and final. Robinson dominated the final, with Wright racing his way back into second, and Trevor Whitby a solid third.
The Inaugural Joseph Biancini Shield was very deservingly won by Dillan Wells. Dillan drove exceptionally well all weekend from the back of the pack in Novices.
Junior Dee Vine Cup was hotly contested with numerous young competitors clean sweeping their divisions (Joseph Bianchini – 0 points, Koa Patten – 0 points, Eli Patten – 0 points, Will Jones – 0 points,). However, brilliant driving all weekend saw the Junior Cup awarded to Mitchell Love.
Senior Dee Vine Cup was also a very close contest, with Hugh White, Danny Wright, Richard Drooger, Brett Robinson and Connor Dunn all on zero points. Orange’s Brett Robinson earned the award for his amazing drives throughout the festival.
Club President Wally Snaderio thanked all the participants and officials for such an amazing weekend of racing.
“Most importantly, without the help of all of the sponsors, such events could not continue. With the track looking amazing thanks to all the sponsors support, in particular Dee Vine Estate Wines, many racers promised their return.”
Dee Vine Estate owner, Adrian Bianchini, gave a heartfelt speech highlighting the weekend’s tribute to his late brother, a member of the Club, and thanking all the competitors.