from Russell Innes, IKC
A massive 389 starters contested Round 5 of the Ipswich Kart Club Championship across two (June 17 & 18) beautiful days of weather, albeit a little cold early each morning. With 18 classes, in 15 Groups, it was a massive schedule for the IKC team of officials and volunteers, but they did an amazing job to get through it all over two days with minimal delays and certainly provided all competitors, officials, etc, a great opportunity to fine tune for the upcoming AKC Round at Ipswich in July.
49 drivers lined up for Cadet 12 and Maxim Kirwan put it on pole ahead of Xavier Raso, Blake Haigh, Corey Carson and Lana Flack. Across the A, B, C Heat format, winners were Carson x 4 and Flack x 2, with Maxim Kirwan, Raso, Cooper Folley, Alester Flack, Haigh, Basilo Micale and Michael Quintiliani all in the placings. After all the Heats, the top 35 went straight into the Final, whilst the remaining drivers raced off in the Last Chance Qualifier to gain the last 5 spots in the Final, with Archie Bristow winning from Caine Caldwell, Matthew Dixon, Mikko Wuoti and Charles Newman.
Carson led away in the 12 Lap Final with Folley, Haigh and Lana Flack in pursuit. Folley grabbed the lead on Lap 4 with Flack also following through and dropping Carson to 3rd. On Lap 5 Flack then took over at the front with Carson also moving back up to 2nd ahead of Folley, whilst Haigh had slipped back to 14th and Jack Larsen and Riley Harrison had moved into 4th and 5th. Flack continued to lead until Lap 8 with Carson now back in front. Carson continued to lead right through to the finish with Flack very close behind in 2nd, whilst Folley was comfortable in 3rd just a little off their pace, but able to hold out Alester Flack who had come through to 4th and Larsen back in 5th.
Paige Flack pulled out a stunning lap in Cadet 9 qualifying to snatch pole from Brock Nolan, Lukas Loeskow, Jack Musico and Ayrton Hobday, but Heat 1 shook things up a bit with a few of the expected frontrunners having issues and Harlen Bell took the win from Riccardo Johnston and Loeskow. Nolan started to assert some authority in Heat 2 with a strong win from Musico and Loeskow and he backed it up with another win in Heat 3 from Bell and Oliver Williamson. In the Final, Nolan led from the lights out and immediately gapped the field, while Loeskow, Jeremy Broadbent, Jay Kostecki and Carter Grother battled for the remaining podium spots. Nolan going on to win quite comfortably by nearly 4 seconds from Loeskow whilst Grother snatched 3rd from Broadbent on the last lap, with Kostecki 5th.
16 drivers lined up in Cadet P class. In Cadet 9P, Harley Wilkinson had 3 good Heat wins, with Lenox Carson, Fredrick Wuoti, Lochlan Buzza and Walter Hillier in the placings. In the Final though both Wilkinson and Carson were DNF’s, so Buzza crossed the line 1st in Class ahead of Jonathan Mathers and Hillier. In Cadet 12P, Jayde Wasley won Heat 1 but was DQ’d for underweight, elevating Drake Hutton to the win from Braxton Doyle and Oliver Tresillian. Hutton again won Heat 2 from Doyle with Wasley 3rd. Doyle was able to turn the tables in Heat 3 winning from Hutton and Tresillian. Hutton led away from pole in the Final and set a great pace at the front but Doyle was sticking with him, these two well clear of the rest. Doyle got very close to pass for the lead several times but Hutton held him out and pulled away towards the end to a small margin of victory. Jensen Berridge saved his best for last with a solid drive to take the last step on the podium.
Gearbox class was on the programme for the 3rd time this year at IKC as they contested the 3rd and Final Round of the Queensland Pineapple Cup and Leon Cordato was quickest in qualifying narrowly ahead of Jac Preston and Troy Loeskow. Preston though was in great form once racing got underway with narrow wins in the 1st 2 Heats from Cordato and Loeskow. Cordato managed to lead early in Heat 3 but Preston soon took over at the front, whilst Loeskow was an early spinner and dropped well back, elevating Bailey Sagaidak to 3rd from Taylah Agius in pursuit. Preston again winning from Cordato and Agius who snatched 3rd from Sagaidak mid race. In the Final Preston was unchallenged leading from lights out for a comfortable win from Cordato and Agius who held out a fast finishing Loeskow.
After 3 Rounds of the Queensland Pineapple Cup for the Gearbox class, Bailey Sagaidak was the winner ahead of Billy Myers and Jac Preston.
A handful of the Gearbox class entrants also doubled up to compete in Qld Open Performance and in the Light class Taylah Agius was dominant winning all 3 Heats and the Final comfortably. Leon Cordato, Lachlan Murphy and Troy Webb were amongst the placings throughout the Heats and in the Final Cordato was a comfortable 2nd with Webb 3rd. In the Heavy class Dan Hutchinson won the 1st 2 Heats from Jonathon Marcusson and Troy Bretherton. Marcusson was able to get one over Hutchinson in Heat 3, Bretherton again best of the rest in 3rd place. Hutchinson led all the way in the Final to win from Marcusson, whilst Scott Cleveland got the best of a battle for 3rd with Bretherton.
A quality field of 24 KA3 Seniors was led in Qualifying by Lachlan Platten ahead of Rohan Gresham and Benito Montalbano. Platten led all the way in Heat 1 for a narrow win from Montalbano and Gresham. In Heat 2 Gresham led early before Platten took the lead, but Declan Matthews hunted him down and grabbed 1st place on the last lap for a very narrow victory. Keegan Fraser got the best of a great battle with Gresham and Montalbano to finish 3rd. Gresham again led the first lap in Heat 3, but Platten soon retook the lead and drove away for a reasonably comfortable win from Montalbano and Gresham. Platten led away in the Final and never relinquished the lead despite Montalbano running very close behind throughout. Matthews got the best of a great battle behind including Gresham, Fraser, Matthew Waters and Ryan Uhlmann to secure the final spot on the podium.
Ryan MacMillan was fastest in qualifying for KA2 Junior, ahead of Isaac McNeill and Dominic Penman and MacMillan continued on his hot form by winning all 3 Heats. Penman, Brodie Norris, Ky Burke and McNeill were amongst the placings in the Heats. MacMillan again dominated in the Final leading all the way from Penman and McNeill, but Burke had some fantastic pace in the Final and got past both McNeill and Penman in the later stages to grab 2nd place, dropping Penman to 3rd at the finish.
This Round also doubled as the 3rd and Final Round of the Queensland Pineapple Cup for KA2 Junior and after 3 Rounds, Ryan MacMillan was the winner from Dominic Penman and Isaac McNeill.
Isaac McNeill led qualifying in KA3 Junior Light, ahead of Jack Szewczuk and Jye Flynn. With the A, B, C Heat Format for the oversubscribed class, the Heat winners were Luke Rinaldi x 3, Brodie Norris x 2 and McNeill, with Szewczuk, Luke Trost, Flynn and Dominic Penman all amongst the placings. In the Last Chance Qualifier, Nash Peirano won ahead of Hayden McGill and Jaxon Duong with Nicholas Beaumont-Walsh and Mia Yarwood securing the last few spots on the grid for the Final. Rinaldi would start the Final from Pole with Norris alongside and McNeill and Szewczuk on the 2nd row. Rinaldi led for the 1st 2 laps before Norris moved to the front with Szewczuk and McNeill in pursuit. Rinaldi went back to the front on lap 5 with McNeill also moving forward into 2nd and these 2 started to edge away from Norris in 3rd. On Lap 6 McNeill made his move to the lead and just started to edge away from Rinaldi and over the remaining laps built a small but comfortable lead to win from Rinaldi, these 2 well clear of Norris in 3rd.
Jackson Cooper led Qualifying in KA3 Junior Heavy from Jaxson Fischle and Lucas Lesmes. Cooper led all the way in Heat 1 to win from Fischle and Max Acquasanta. Fischle got the jump to lead early in Heat 2 but Cooper soon retook the lead and held on in a very tight finish to win from Fischle and Charlotte Page. Fischle again got the best of the start in Heat 3 and this time held out Cooper throughout the 8 laps, but Cooper was able to find a way past on the last lap for a narrow margin of victory. Lesmes and Page battled all throughout for 3rd, swapping places a few times, but Lesmes was able to grab the 3rd placing back on the last lap. On to the Final and Fischle again led early with Cooper, Page and Lesmes in pursuit. At the front it was a very close battle and Cooper finally found a way past Fischle on Lap 8 to take the lead, these two just edging away from Page in 3rd. Over the remaining laps, Cooper was able to build a small but comfortable margin whilst Fischle slipped back to Page and she took advantage on the 12th and last lap to snatch 2nd place from Fischle. Fischle though was to lose the 3rd place with a post race penalty, which elevated Cooper Friend to 3rd and the final step on the podium.
The small 4SS Junior field was dominated all day by Jaxon Duong winning all 3 Heats and the Final convincingly from Jaxon Turner and Dane Norris.
In the Restricted TAG classes, Jack Munro was dominant in Light, leading Qualifying by 3/10th and then convincingly winning all 3 Heats by a good margin and then the Final by almost 3 seconds. Riley Van Den Broek had his best race meeting for a while with strong placings in Heat 1 and 2 and a great drive in the Final for 2nd. Josh Frew, Jacinta Hoey and Robert Mortensen were also in the placings during the Heats. Hoey and Mortensen battling in the Final early for 2nd and 3rd behind Munro, before Van Den Broek drove past both of them to leave them fighting for the final spot on the podium, Hoey narrowly winning the battle to take the 3rd placing.
Bradley McNaught was fastest in Qualifying for Medium from Noel Smyth and Bradley Cox. McNaught would go through the whole race meeting virtually unchallenged, except for Smyth challenging for the lead and taking over at the front for a couple of laps in Heat 3. Apart from that, McNaught won all 3 Heats reasonably comfortably and then had a convincing win in the Final by almost 3 seconds. Smyth was the best of the rest with 2nd place in all 3 Heats and the Final. Rudy Farkas and Alan Czislowski were very close all day battling for 3rd placings and Farkas was just able to get the better of that battle in the Final for 3rd place.
In TAG Restricted Masters, Noel Smyth just edged out Gavin Soward and Kevin Johnston in Qualifying and these 3 along with Rudy Farkas were the clear frontrunners all through the race meeting. Smyth though just had a small edge over everyone and won all 3 Heats and the Final, although Farkas challenged him very hard in the Final and the margin of victory was only small for Smyth. Johnston was a little way back for 3rd and the final step on the podium.
Toby Spinks led X30 Qualifying from Kurtis Tennant and Sam Seccombe in a quality field of drivers. Tennant though was in great form on his home track and won Heat 1 well from Seccombe and Brad Jenner. Seccombe turned the tables in Heat 2 in a great drive chasing down Spinks and Jenner early. Spinks 2nd with Tennant taking 3rd from Jenner late in the Heat. Tennant led Heat 3 early before Jenner came through with a strong drive to take the lead. Seccombe and Spinks were close behind and capitalised when Tennant dropped out midday through the Heat. Jenner having a reasonably comfortable win from Seccombe and then Spinks. On to the Final and Seccombe was off pole from Jenner, but Seccombe, Spinks, Tennant and Jack Webster were all knocked out of contention or severely delayed in the 1st lap shuffle and Jenner emerged with a commanding lead over Jacob Dowson and Elliot Cleary which he continued to extend throughout the 12 Laps for a strong 4 second win from Dowson and Cleary close behind.
Toby Spinks did the double by also going fastest in Qualifying for TAG Light. As you would expect though Jace Matthews was going to be the one to beat on his home track and he had a strong Heat 1 win from Spinks and Jett Adamson. Matthews though had some bad luck in Heat 2 finishing well down the order as Spinks led Jack Wells and Jackson Souslin-Harlow to the chequered flag. In Heat 3 Matthews didn’t take long to move to the lead after Spinks led early. Matthews going on to win by over a second. Adamson drove forward to take 2nd from Souslin-Harlow in 3rd and Spinks slipping back to 4th. In the Final a strong pack at the front consisting of Spinks, Adamson, Souslin-Harlow, Wells and Matthews battled early before Adamson and Wells were out of contention, leaving Souslin-Harlow and Spinks fending off Matthews. Matthews moved past Spinks but had to work really hard to find his way past Souslin-Harlow on lap 10 of 12 for a narrow victory with Spinks very close behind in 3rd.
Sam Houston put down the fast lap in Qualifying for TAG Heavy ahead of Brock Plumb, Leigh Nicolaou, Regan Payne and Will Marshall. Plumb led early in Heat 1 with Houston and Nicolaou in pursuit. Nicolaou was the mover though and took the lead on lap 5 and held on to win from Houston and Payne. Houston led all the way in Heat 2 for the win ahead of Payne and Nicolaou. Payne led all the way in Heat 3 to win from Houston and Nicolaou, but a post race DQ took him out of the results, elevating Houston to the win from Nicolaou and Marshall. On to the Final and Nicolaou and Houston would lead off the front row and Nicolaou went to the front and led the first 10 laps., whilst behind Payne had moved forward to challenge Houston for 2nd. Things changed dramatically over the final 2 laps as Houston and Payne both got past Nicolaou before they came together starting the last lap and both were out of contention, leaving Nicolaou again in the lead from Marshall, Jared Neinert and Plumb and this is how they crossed the line, but it wasn’t over as a post race penalty dropped Nicolaou off the podium and Marshall ended up the winner from Neinert and Plumb.
Ipswich Kart Club again ran their popular Clubday Challenge Program at this Round and the Group winners were:
Olivia Walton – Cadet 9 Group 3, Felix Sim – Cadet 9 Group 2, Cadet 12 Group 3 – Charles Newman, Cadet 12 Group 2 – Vincent Ter Horst, KA3 Junior Heavy Group 2 – Kyden McMinn, KA3 Junior Light Group 3 – Mia Yarwood, KA3 Junior Light Group 2 – Sebastian Simonelli, TAG Restricted Masters Group 2 – Mark D’Arcy, TAG Restricted Medium Group 2 – Gabriel Goodchild, TAG Restricted Light Group 2 – Ned Lenehan.
Next event at Ipswich of course will be Round 4 of the 2023 Australian Kart Championships on July 14th, 15th and 16th and indications are that this event will certainly have over 400 entries.