By Mark Wicks, KartSportNews
Tight racing, big sends and some dominant performances – the penultimate round of the 2023 Golden Power Series hosted by the Gippsland Go Kart Club at Morwell on the weekend had it all. The juniors and cadets in particular put on some great racing on this tight circuit and there was a special and unique Driver Of The Round awarded at the end.
- scroll to the bottom for photo gallery
- full results are on speedhive HERE
- more photos by Steve Dansie: Saturday HERE, Sunday HERE
- more photos by Tim Francis HERE
KA3 Junior Heavy (15 starters, sponsored by Precision Karting)
Chelsea Humphrey set the quick time in qualifying, a win and two second placings in the heats putting her off pole for the final. Amos Orr, celebrating his 15th birthday, was alongside after two heats wins and a difficult opening race.
Humphrey jumped into the lead at the start but on the third lap at the tightest part of the track, her throttle cable failed. As the kart lost power, the field behind was sent scattering as drivers negotiated either side of the road block. Amazingly, everyone got around safety. Chelsea had the presence of mind to reach down and hand operate the throttle to get going again, but retired the kart six laps later. Net result was Hugo Garraway in the lead over Mathew Basso, however Garraway’s pace faded and it was Zachary Turner who worked the traffic to lead the field across the line. Unfortunately, Turner was DQd post race, handing Basso the win and promoting local driver Ryan Wyhoon to the podium ahead of Garraway, James Brett and Darsyn Harris
1 Mathew Basso
2 Amos Orr
3 Ryan Wyhoon
TaG 125 Light (16 starters, sponsored by Fabcon)
In the end, Matthew Domaschenz scored a relatively easy win over Will Harper and Thomas Hughes, but there had been plenty of fireworks through the field in the heat races. Local drivers Jamie Rowe and Sam Downing were the fastest in qualifying, Downing winning the opening heats but sustaining a penalty that backed him into the pack. Domaschenz got up for the heat three win and did a rinse-and-repeat job in the final, edging out Harper by 0.5s. Zach Thompson was fourth ahead of Downing and Curt Sera. Fastest qualifier Rowe DNFd into the barriers at the very first corner.
1 Matthew Domaschenz
2 Will Harper
3 Thomas Hughes
TaG 125 Restricted Medium (18 starters, sponsored by T&G Mechanical Repairs)
Max Lumsden was the class of the Restricted Medium field. After winning the opening heats by mere tenths over Darryl Heman and Jesse Watkins respectively, Lumsden was unchallenged thereafter.
Consistent finishes by Scott Roberts put him alongside Lumsden for the start of the final, but Roberts couldn’t get the pace fired up in the opening lap. By the time Christopher Harvey and Henman had made it by Roberts, Lumsden was long gone, heading for this third round victory. Trent Meadows put in a noteworthy drive, passing several karts to finish fourth ahead of Roberts and Thomas Brook.
1 Max Lumsden
2 Christopher Harvey
3 Darryl Henman
KA3 Senior Medium (17 starters, sponsored by DJE CNC Machining)
In qualifying, Zach Findlay edged Bodhi Bright for quick time by 0.02s, the only drivers in the field to dip into the 29-second bracket. After finishing nose-to-tail in the opening heat, the duo locked horns in heat two, both receiving time penalties that handed the win to Cory Arnett. Having qualified sixth, Arnett had done a great job in the heats, working through traffic, pouncing when the opportunity arose and winning heat three.
With Bright buried in the pack and Findlay out of P4, Arnett got around a fast-starting Taylem Mackinlay to lead the final. Setting fastest lap on the way, Findlay charged into P2 and was off after Arnett. After one failed attempt for the lead, Findlay got the job done on the final lap when Arnett went defensive down pit straight. However, the two made contact in the last corner, Findlay ending up in the grass before the two crossed the line in a side-by-side photo finish, Arnett ahead of Findlay and Lachlan Sharpe just 0.8s behind. But it wasn’t over for Zach, hit with a yellow flag penalty, dropping him to fourth ahead of a bunch of locals – Ben Fisher, a recovering Bright, Grant Wicks and Harrison Martin.
1 Cory Arnett
2 Lachlan Sharpe
3 Taylem Macklay
KA3 Junior Light (21 starters, sponsored by TMT Custom Designs)
Quick report here, because Will Thompson, Sam March and Ayce Buckley finished 1-2-3 in every single race across the weekend. March qualified quickest and did get to lead some laps, but it was Thompson – the newly crowned South Australian champion – who was in control, winning his third round and second on the run. Jai George started fourth but crashed out at the start. Christian Sasso came home fourth ahead of Cohen Naumann, Cooper Frith and Cody Boys.
1 William Thompson
2 Samuel March
3 Ayce Buckley
TaG 125 Restricted Light (22 starters, sponsored by Race Radiators)
After qualifying fastest, Ethan Warren won the opening heats but was shadowed all the way by round four winner Ryan Dealy. Warren also won heat three, but this time over Brodie Doidge who only qualified ninth, but was bouncing up and down the order with some big passes.
Starting P2 in the final, Dealy was the only driver who looked to have a chance of challenging Warren, but he was wiped out at the very first corner. Marco Zanaboni made the most of the opportunity to run second, but was never going to catch Warren. Doidge continued his progress to take third ahead of Brock Burton and Ella Dealy.
1 Ethan Warren
2 Marco Zanaboni
3 Brodie Doige
Cadet 12 (25 starters, sponsored by Mikomi Promotions)
A big field of Cadet 12 was broken into upper and lower 50% groups for qualifying, then A-B-C-D groups for the heat races. There was plenty of action and Joseph Bianchini, Jasper Partouche, Oscar Corless, Jensen Damaschino and Lucas Costanzo all grabbed a win.
The final was interrupted by a red flag when Harry Jones and Merik Nesbitt came together. Costanzo was ahead at the time, having regained the lead from Bianchini. Costanzo brought the field around for a near perfect re-start and went on to take victory, his third of the series. Bianchini and Damaschino swapped positions several times on the way to the podium, ahead of Corless. Special mention for Michael White. Having not set a time in qualifying, White spent the entire meeting passing karts, eventually taking a popular fifth in the final.
1 Lucas Costanzo
2 Joseph Bianchini
3 Jensen Damaschino
Vic Combined Masters (8 starters, sponsored by InterCapital Express)
Former National champion Jason Domaschenz picked up another win in Masters. A clear pace setter all weekend, he lost the lead just once, Leigh Holmes getting by for a moment at the beginning of a heat race before Domaschenz restored the order just corners later. Setting fastest lap on the way, Domo cruised to a 2+ second win over Holmes who was under fire from RKC’s Ian Branson. Chris Brooks was fourth ahead of Herman Van Ree and Steve Lowerson.
1 Jason Domaschenz
2 Leigh Holmes
3 Ian Branson
Cadet 9 (15 starters, sponsored by DJE CNC Machining)
The Cadet 9s really turned it on at Morwell. Having first sighted the track that morning, Jarvis Hindle qualified fastest ahead of Samuel Jansen Van Vuuren and top local Jordan Bantick. Hindle took a commanding win in the opening heat, but then got in all sorts of bother in heat two with a spin, but still set fastest lap. By heat three however, Jansen van Vuuren had sorted things out, taking another win as Bantick had contact at the start and dropped to the rear.
In his last ever race as a Cadet 9, Jansen van Vuuren jumped into the lead and was never headed, setting fastest lap and winning by over nine seconds, easily the biggest margin of the meeting.
But behind, it was ‘WOW’! Hindle and Bantick both dropped a stack of positions at the start, Lex Kelly and Wil Cairns making the most of the situation and finding themselves in second and third. Kelly did not have the pace to run with the leader and had a gaggle of karts snapping at his rear bumper, but the kid did not crack. Eventually Bantick, who had systematically been working back up through the order, got onto Kelly’s tail and was the only driver to successfully execute a move, crossing the line second, though a post-race yellow flag penalty dropped him to fourth. Oscar Calisico was fifth ahead of Rossi Yau and Hindle.
1 Samuel Jansen Van Vuuren
2 Lex Kelly
3 Wil Cairns
KA3 Senior Light (20 starters, sponsored by Fabcon)
Having won the last three rounds on the trot, Gerry Westerveld was looking good to make it number four, qualifying fastest, winning all the heats and heading the pack into the last lap of the final. But then the proverbial hit the fan, taken out of the lead by an incident from behind!
Westerveld went into P1 off pole in the final, but Brodie Radford, who had recorded a string of second places and had proven pace with two fastest laps, got shuffled back to fourth. While Westerveld kept cool up front, Radford was charging back, getting by Nicholas Trebilcock and then Jaylen Paragreen with some big sends into the hairpin. The FA Kart driver tried another big send on the race leader, but this time was not able to make the move stick, bogging both down and giving the pursuing pack a sniff of victory. Radford, Paragreen and Jamie Rowe ended up three-wide under brakes, but contact saw them and the race leader all off the track at the end of pit straight!
Trebilcock drove past the melee and crossed the line with a “WTF just happened?” wave of the hand. Isabel Rowe (off grid 11!) was next then Paragreen, who was the quickest of the crashers to recover. Jasper Frith, who didn’t set a time in qualifying, came home a well deserved fourth ahead of Nick Popple and Nathan Emmins.
1 Nicholas Trebilcock
2 Isabel Rowe
3 Jaylen Paragreen
TaG 125 Restricted Heavy (8 starters, sponsored by Italian Australian Sporting club)
Like in Senior Medium, the fastest qualifier in Restricted Heavy won all the heat races (and set fastest lap in each), but struck trouble in the final. Brett Jenkin was on target for a perfect race meeting and lined up on pole for the final, but Blair Van Ree got around the outside and into the lead at the start. Jenkin shadowed Van Ree waiting for a chance to pass before throwing a massive slide-job on the leader. Jenkin couldn’t pull the kart up enough in the turn, allowing Van Ree to duck back into P1. A few laps later Jenkin tried again, but this time things went bad, riding a wheel and getting caught up with the following Trent Meadows. This allowed Ryan Van Ree through to second with Meadows getting back on the track for third. Brodie Warner and Jason Gambold were next.
1 Blair Van Ree
2 Ryan Van Ree
3 Trent Meadows
TaG 125 Heavy (13 starters, sponsored by Boolarra Mechanical Repairs)
With plenty on his mind as the President of the host club, Troy Alger put all that to one side to pole the TaG Heavy class. Troy was untouchable in the heats, winning all three, though Liam Ford did set a couple of fastest laps, proving he had the pace, if not the track position.
Alger won the start, but chaos behind saw grid 2 starter Tom McCulloch drop to last and Geoff Wyhoon out of the event, having started fifth. Ford also dropped positions as Hughes and Nikola Schmidt set off after Alger. Troy was run closest in the final, Hughes setting fastest lap and finally latching onto the tail of the DR Kart in the final laps. Unlike some drivers in other classes, Alger never went defensive on the final tour and Hughes was unable, or unwilling, to make the big move. Kyle Pettenhofer finished fourth ahead of Ford, Zach Morris and the unfortunate McCulloch.
1 Troy Alger
2 Thomas Hughes
3 Nikola Schmidt
Driver Of The Round (sponsored by The Bottleologist)
Several drivers enjoyed a clean sweep of their classes, Ethan Warren, Max Lumsden, William Thompson, Jason Domaschenz and Troy Alger all undefeated across the weekend. But fresh off winning the South Australian championship the weekend prior, it was Lumsden who took home the Impossible Bottle.
As an aside, The Bottleologist performs magic and places items inside fully intact glass bottles. Specialising in framed photos, it’s possible to upload your own pic and have that framed and placed inside a bottle – an ideal gift or special treat! Visit The Bottleologist HERE.