23 October Opening Meeting Report
Written by Cindy   
Wednesday, 02 November 2016

Report from Opening Meeting thanks Tony Stuart
Oceanview Opens

The sun shone on Supercheap Auto Oceanview Family Speedway as a new season kicked into life on Sunday. Competitor numbers were down a little, with a number of drivers delaying their first appearance, but there was still action aplenty.
The Elite Mechanical Stockcars took top billing. Mike Mooney has renewed his sponsorship of the Elite Series for Stockcars, but this season points will be awarded at every meeting, with drivers able to drop their worst two meeting scores. Sadly for last year’s series winner Dion Mooney, a power steering pump failure kept the immaculate 2NZ machine in the pits.
That was good news for Elite Series runner-up last year, Mark Johnston. The 78V car took the first two heats, and finished second to the lone Superstock competitor Scott Duncan in the third to take a good haul of points. 
Come the feature race, Nathan Black (67V) decided that enough was enough, and he and Johnston had a running battle. Black, running the ex-Ian Barron car did everything he could to halt Johnston’s progress, and when the race ended with Chet Swan winning in the 9V car, Black and Johnston were several laps down.
The PAUA Print Grand Slam featured more of the same, with a prize up for grabs for the best stirrer. Unsurprisingly Black took that out, but not before being fired into the wall at the Airport end by Jamie Tinetti in Daryl James’ 53V car. The race was taken out by Brendon Learmonth in the 174V Tank, after he had a heavy collision with the wall earlier in the day.
It was great to see former 1NZ Gerry Linklater back on the track, even if he was flying an “L” flag as he goes through a mentoring programme. But both he and Jayson Palamountain (28V) had days to forget. Newcomer Peter Wapp (51V) in the former Potaka car had plenty of fun on his first day of competition.
Dion Mooney should be repaired for this coming weekend, and Francis Potaka will debut his new car. The two Vulcans drivers head south next week with the Ken’s Cowboys team, and will be competing with the Wanganui Vulcans at the Huntly Teams Invitational on the 18th and 19th of November. The first Vulcans team of the season will be selected soon.
The Remax Realty Youth Ministocks provided the biggest fields of the day, with visitors Dion Henderson (45K) and Jackson Evans (47H) taking two races each. Henderson in particular had great pace, breaking Dylan Smith’s Youth Ministock lap record in the third race with a lap of 18.38 seconds. 
Callum Sturzaker (15V) was the most consistent of the local competitors with three fourth placings and a third, whilst Hailey James (12V) had a scary moment on the final race when her car was struck from behind and almost rolled.
Bradley Korff (86S) took a clean sweep of the River City Press Adult Ministock races. Ryan Nolly (72S) took two second placings and one third, whilst last season’s points winner Ayrton Smith was off his normal pace, although he managed a third placing in the feature race.
A good field of Caird Bobcats Production Saloons was bolstered by Hawkes Bay visitor Brendon Zachan, who took the first race and the feature. Jason Pointon was on the pace in the 71V car, and Steven Davie (17V) had a good win in the other race. 
Grant Little (5V) was another consistent performer, whilst the local field has been bolstered by three newcomers, Shane van Schalkwyk (27V), Brent Hackett (11V) and Mike Lovell (10V) who debuted an immaculate Holden Commodore.
Sunday was a good blow-out for the competitors, and for the new Oceanview Family Speedway team under the leadership of new club president Daryl James.