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Moore wins on Touring Cars return

3 December, 2015

Auckland driver Richard Moore has starred in his debut of the BNT NZ Touring Cars at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park over the weekend of November 28–29, by taking the class one–round win in his Holden Commodore. The class one–round podium rounded out with Simon Evans in second and Jason Bargwanna in third.

Moore notched up a third place in Saturday’s opening encounter, in what was a rain-affected race, as series leader Simon Evans speared off the track finishing well down the order.
Moore had actually won the race before a post-race investigation penalized 11 drivers for weaving across the track after the safety-car lights had gone out following the Evans incident.

A 10-second penalty relegated Moore to third place, with Jason Bargwanna in his Toyota Camry promoted to the race win.

Race conditions for Sunday’s two races saw clear skies and hot conditions greet drivers at the north Waikato circuit, where Evans fought back claiming two wins, and Moore was close behind with two second-place finishes.

Moore who worked twice as hard by also competing in the UDC V8 Ute series, taking the round win there, says the weekend result was the perfect way to get his ‘late’ championship campaign started.

“Unbelievable! I haven’t been in a car like this for 12 months. We won in the ute too, it was the perfect weekend really,” says Moore.

“Big thanks to our sponsor group GVI.kiwi, Mike Pero, and DownForce Advanced Driver Training — without them we wouldn’t have been here this weekend.

“It’s all about building the momentum now, keep the ball rolling. We’ll get some more sponsorship support between now and the next round, and hopefully continue the fight up front when the championship heads to the South Island in the new year.”

Simon Evans still leads the championship on 564 points, with Bargwanna in second on 505, and Tim Edgell in third on 445 points.

Class two was won by Wellington’s Brock Cooley, his first round win of the season. Auckland’s Brad Lathrope took second place ahead of Hamilton’s Simon Fleming who took third. The trio capitalizing on the misfortune of class-two championship leader Kevin Williams, who struck trouble in race two of the weekend with a DNF.

Photo credit: Simon Chapman

Penny’s Pagoda – Mercedes Benz 230 SL

We scouted out a few different locations for photographing this car, but they all had one thing in common. At every stop, people could not help but come up and compliment owner Penny Webster on her stunning Horizon Blue Mercedes 230 SL.
There’s something about the ‘Pagoda’ Mercedes — so-called because the distinctive dipping curve of its roofline echoes that of the famous Eastern tiered temples — that encourages people to speak up.
Many classic cars attract a second look, but in most cases people keep their thoughts to themselves. It was striking how many people felt the need to express the warmth of their feelings about this car.
The expansive glass cockpit, the friendly, subtle lines, and its simple three-box shape seem to encourage openness among passers-by.

Motorsport Flashback – Kiwi rallying in the 1970s

Rallying arrived in New Zealand in 1973 like a tsunami. It had been only a few years since the sport was introduced here and shortly afterwards Heatway came on board as the sponsor to take rallying to a new level. The 1973 Heatway would be the longest and biggest yet, running in both islands with 120 drivers over eight days and covering some 5400 kilometres. The winner was 31-year-old Hannu Mikkola — a genuine Flying Finn who had been rallying since 1963 before putting any thoughts of a career on hold until he completed an economics degree. The likeable Finn became an instant hero to many attracted to this new motor sport thing. I was one of them.