by Australian Superkart Events
The Zucoins Australian Superkart Championship has been run and won at Phillip Island with some of the most spontaneous and dramatic racing we have seen in years!
The final round of the championship at the National Festival of Superkarts ran in spectacular conditions, even with the threat of rain spoiling proceedings in the weekend lead up.
Six Drivers were Crowned Australian Superkart Champions in one of the most competitive championships the sport has ever seen.
- Results of all the individual races are on Natsoft HERE (then click Circuit Racing and scroll to August Access Phillip Island 7/8/22)
Presented by Oz Design Furniture Nunawading
Heading into the weekend, it was Jordie Ford who looked to be settled at the top with a handy lead in 250 International, although his luck would turn with a catastrophic engine failure taking him out of the weekend in qualifying. This bought the championship down to Gary Pegoraro and Ilya Harpas, both no strangers to the premier class National Title. Harpas with pace to burn took the lead from Pegoraro in race 1, but handed it back after a gremlin, giving Pegoraro the upper hand in the Championship. This meant Harpas needed to win the remaining three races to keep his #1, after taking out race 2 and 3, it came down to the final.
Matt Bass took an early lead in the Final, a huge ‘spanner in the works’ as Harpas and Pegoraro squabbled for position. Both fought their way past Bass, but he wasn’t giving up the fight, right on the leaders ready to take his first race win for the year. On the penultimate lap, Pegoraro gained on Harpas significantly over Lukey Heights, setting up for a last effort to secure the Championship. A huge dive down the inside of Harpas into MG Corner looked successful from the sidelines, but Harpas wanted that win just as bad, hanging on around the outside, contact was made and Harpas exited the circuit spinning. Matt Bass jumped to the lead and stole the win, and luckily for Pegoraro he continued to pass the finish line in second, locking in his second Australian Superkart Title. Harpas will be left wondering what could have been but will be spurred on with even more determination to lock out a 5th Aus Title in 2023.
125cc Open Gearbox
Presented by KJB Accountants
The 125cc Open Gearbox Category proved all too smooth for Nicholas Schembri, taking a clean sweep of the National Festival of Superkart to top off a spectacular Australian Championship assault. Not only did Schembri take a lap record at The Bend, but put his name to the record sheets at Phillip Island as he surged to a comfortable win in all four races.
While Schembri skipped away with the title, the heat was on between Lee Vella and Brad Marsh-Stepney for second place. Vella threw everything but the kitchen sink, in his fastest and most threatening run all year. Only a few tenths of a second off Schembri, Vella had Marsh worried and needing to finish as high as possible. Having the upper hand, Marsh finished p3 in the final race, just scraping enough points to hold onto Second place in the Championship. Vella was able to show maximum promise and will still be happy with Third overall, knowing in 2023 he will be in premium form and one of the ‘one’s to beat’.
Presented by Slipstream Signs
David Salter proved that consistency and reliability is the key to a Championship! Salter progressed through The Bend and Phillip Island events finishing all races with a handful of wins. Michael Doherty and John Cashan threw everything they had at their assault but came undone with DNF’s hampering each weekend and their title chances. 2023 looks to be even bigger with talks of drivers keen to step into the faster category.
Presented by Brunswick Yard – Balmoral Quay – Supagas
Many thought the championship lead Jim Gorman took into the National Festival of Superkarts would have guaranteed the title, being in quick form from The Bend, but it wasn’t all smooth sailing. On Jeff Duckworth’s home turf, he put in a stellar effort to fight to the end of race 1 and capitalise on Gorman’s electrical mishap, taking a win and stamping his authority on a National Title comeback.
Drama struck for Duckworth in race 2 though, the notoriously reliable racer ground to a halt with his first engine seizure recorded, just like Ford in 250 International, shattering all hopes of the Australian Title. As Gorman took his ‘get out of jail free card’ and skipped off to 3 Final wins, dominating the standings and taking out the Australian Superkart Championship, quiet achiever Tom Roe was chipping away at the points and escalated himself into Second Position. Overjoyed to have taken p2 in the championship and keeping experienced pilots such as Warren McGrouther and Jock Dos Santos behind him, he is looking to go one step higher on the podium in 2023.
Rotax NGB Light
Presented by RPM Real Estate Group
Sanuja Perera looked to have an upper hand in Rotax Light, having maximised his points advantage coming into the Final Championship Round, but Antoni Ormsby was not going down without a fight. Perera is usually spectacularly quick around Phillip Island and the slipstreaming nature of the circuit can create dramatic results, in this weekends case Ormsby took full advantage of the ‘tow’ and snuck through to take out race 1 while Perera squabbled up to 3rd, desperate to limit the points stolen.
Johnny Twigden put his name on the map, consistently landing himself on the podium throughout the weekend and sneaking onto the podium, P3 in his Superkart Championship debut. Although Twigden provided spectacular pace, all eyes were on Ormsby and Perera, the former closing the points gap down before the final. Dicing all race, slipstreaming and testing where to pass on the finish line, Perera timed his run the finish line perfectly, pipping Ormsby by 0.02 of a second to lock in the Australian Superkart Championship!
With the ever growing category appealing to the fiercest of racers, 2023 is set to be even bigger and closer than 2022.
Rotax NGB Heavy
Presented by RPM Real Estate Group
After an unforgettable start to Patrick Ross’ Championship assault at The Bend, the title was his to lose. With Colin McIntyre putting in 110% effort before the weekend to ensure he could reclaim the lead, gloves were off with neither driver taking prisoners. McIntyre got off to the best start he could hope for taking Pole Position, but Ross turned the tables with a win in race 1. Martin Anderson and Oliver Bonaccorso entered the mix, spicing up the standings on the podium and putting some distance between McIntyre and Ross, as the former clawed back points with wins and capitalised on Ross taking an off track excursion in race 3, losing valuable points back in p13.
The Championship came down to the final race, points so close that whoever won would take home the crown. Both contenders bided their time at the front, not wanting to take the jump or be pipped by a slipstreaming counterpart. Martin Anderson and Brandon Stillwell became pivotal in assisting the championship standings, dicing with the leaders, putting on a show for the spectators. By the line, Ross’ Rotax was just too strong leaving McIntyre with no answers and Ross becoming 2023 Australian Superkart Champion.
A huge Thank You to our incredible sponsors who allow us to race successfully, we can’t wait for 2023 with you all:
- – zucoins.com
- – Dunlop Kartsport
- – Hoosier Tire Australia
- – OZ Design Furniture Nunawading
- – KJB Accountants & Business Advisors
- – L&J Designs
- – RPM Real Estate Group
- – Gersh Investments
- – Balmoral Quay
- – Brunswick Yard
- – Penrite Racing
- – Slipstream Signs
- – Supagas
- – JPF Originals Race Gear
- – Phillip Island Auto Racing Club (PIARC)
- – The Bend Motorsport Park
- – Victorian Superkart Club
- – QLD Superkart Club
- – Adelaide Superkart Club
- – Superkart Club Of NSW