Duff Dominates Opening Round of Hydraulink War of the Wings Sprintcar Series
Jamie Duff made the perfect start to the opening round of the Hydraulink War of the Wings Sprintcar Series at the Racecourse Hotel and Motorlodge Ruapuna Speedway, on Saturday evening with a dominating performance winning the 25 Lap Feature with ease as well as blitzing his rivals in his two heats. The former New Zealand champion was a clear winner in the Feature from Luke Keegan and Sam O'Callaghan.
Duff, who has campaigned out of Auckland in recent series has never won the $60,000 WoW South Island wide series due to missing several rounds but he has thrown down the gauntlet to his rivals showing that he can win races from the back, passing his rivals with seeming ease and once in front had too much pace for the rest of the field.
With two heat wins, the second from the back, Duff went into the Feature as the top points scorer and started on the front row alongside Keegan, who had a second can a third in his heats. Duff quickly opened up a lead which increased with each lap and such was his dominance he was starting to lap rivals on the fifth lap and by lap 13 when the first caution came out after Shaun Ashton spun out and tipped over, Duff had lapped half the field.
Two more caution's came out during the race which closed the field up but on the restart Duff quickly pulled clear going on to win by nearly three seconds over the final five laps. Keegan showed his class when holding off several challengers from Ben Gilmore, who won the opening heat, with Keegan's smooth fast style likely to make him among the favourites for the next round at his former home track at Woodford Glen. Over the closing laps Gilmore was passed by O'Callaghan with Gilmore when holding out the fast finishing Matt Honeywell, who is a former winner of the WoW series.
Jeremy Webb was impressive when debuting his recent acquired midget car, going through the meeting unbeaten. Webb took out both the heats, leading home Glen Durie on both occasions and then lead home Durie in the Feature with Gary Chadwick finally getting the better of Dunedin's Gavin Wilkie over the closing laps to claim third place.
Kate Warren again lived up to her 'Queen of the Clay' title when dominating in the Modified Sprint class. Warren was untroubled to take out both heats and then claimed back to back Feature win this season when leading from the opening lap and was never challenged. Courtney Jones and Charlie Jackson had a great dice for the minor placings over the opening laps with Jones going on to claim second place by a handy margin.
As usual the Three Quarter midget car class proved to be very competitive with Kimberley Yeatman and Liam McCoubrey each claiming a heat win with McCoubrey clearing out to take the Feature win with Kyle Glover claiming his third second place of the evening from Tyler Warnock.
Kris Jemmett made it two Feature wins on end, in his Six Shooter from Daryl Wright and Jason Manson with Jemmett and Manson also claim a heat win. I the development quarter midget class Jayden Bradley claimed both heat wins but had to settle for second in the final behind Jack Nairn who tight driving line on the pole-line proved difficult to pass. DuDu Race Results - (Competitors from Christchurch Unless Stated) Sprintcars - Round 1 Hydraulink $60,000 War of the Wings Series Ht 1. Ben Gilmore 1, Daniel Anderson (Te Anau) 2, Luke Keegan 3. Ht 2. Jamie Duff 1, Matt Honeywell 2, Sam O'Callaghan (Cromwell) 3. Ht 3. Jason Scott (Cromwell) 1, O'Callaghan 2, Shaun Ashton 3. Ht 4. Duff 1, Keegan 2, Paddy North (Blenheim) 3. B Main. Steve Sullivan (Nelson) 1, Jackson Lovelady 2, Jason Smith (Nelson) 3 Feature. Duff 1, Keegan 2, O €˜Callaghan 3, Gilmore 4, Honeywell 5, Brett Sullivan (Nelson) 6. Midgets Ht 1. Jeremy Webb 1, Glen Durie 2, Gary Chadwick 3. Ht 2. Webb 1, Durie 2, Gavin Wilkie (Dunedin) 3. Feature. Webb 1, Durie 2, Chadwick 3. Three Quarter Midgets Ht 1. Kimberley Yeatman 1, Tyler Warnock 2, Kyle Glover 3. Ht 2. Liam McCoubrey 1, Glover 2, Daniel McKinley 3. Feature. McCoubrey 1, Glover 2, Warnock 3. Modified Sprints Ht 1. Kate Warren 1, Charlie Jackson, Clayton Phillips 3. Ht 2. Warren 1, Jackson 2, Courtney Jones 3. Feature. Warren 1, Jones 2, Jackson 3. Six Shooters Ht 1. Jason Manson 1, Daryl Wright 2, Peter Keith 3. Ht 2. Kris Jemmett 1, Andrew Gregge 2, Keith 3. Feature. Jemmett 1, Wright 2, Manson 3. Quarter Midgets Ht 1. Jayden Bradley (Nelson) 1, Montana Jamieson 2, Cameron Sidaway 3. Ht 2. Bradley 1, Jamieson 2, Oscar Harcourt 3. Final. Jack Nairn 1, Bradley 2, Harcourt 3.