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Venue: Te Marua Speedway Wellington

Twelve teams competed to win the title of NZ std stock team. It was a great sunny weekend and great racing, a review is below. The teams that competed were: -
Wellington Young Guns (Defending Champ)
1NZ – Dale Robertson
9w – Paul Gaskin
21w – Hilton Parker
22w - Richard Gaskin
46w - Allan Levien
73w – Paul Wood

Auckland Alleycats
35a – Paul Vazey
66a – Peter Church
10a – Craig Collins
34a – Mark Wearing
68a – Billy Neil
44a – Andrew Weir

Palmerston North Pumas
6P - Peter Rees
4P - Graham Ward
3P - Rob Miers
5P - Gary Hayes
7P - Wayne Norris
8P – George Frear

Rotorua Rascals
201R – Mike Rainger
202R – Lance Aldridge
203R – Darren Dodge
204R - Steve McPherson
205R - Steve Axtens
206R - Steve Hampton

Gisborne Gladiators
37G – Ricky Kuru
43G – Ian Knight
47G – Chris Lovell
56G – Gary Evenbly
69G – Glen McIntosh
84G – Bruce Harding

Kihikihi Cruisaiders
11k – Robert Pussell
15k – Mark Corner
18k – Lyall Harvey
26k – Graeme Eton
58k – Robbie Sissons
79 – Eddie Arthur

Palmerston North Steelers
19P – Kerry Humphry
58P – Daniel Lockwood
71P – Justin Cunnigham
75P – Dave Prescott
81P – Eddie Arnold
83P – Mike Devery

Waikato Raiders
92H – Allan Dunn
94H – Rob Taylor
85H – Justin Hutchby
96H – Chris Taylor
97H – Tony Wooten
98H – Neville Hazelton

Meanee Maulers
22B – Brendon Huges
24B – Jason O’Brian
52B – Regan O’Brian
74B – Tony Palmer
84B – Mike McLachlan
86B – Martu Cooke

Baypark Bulldogs
4M – Nick Gallop
5M – Nathan Montgomery
6M – Paul Wilson
7M – Graeme McRobbie
8M – Graeme Daysh
9M – Craig Bolly

Stratford Stormers
401S – Paul Walker
402S – Daniel Read
403S – Jay Knight
405S – Josh Hancock
406S – Blair Luscombe
407S – Tony Zehnder

Wanganui Vulcans
6V – Dion Mooney
8V – Alan Luoni
31V – Daniel Matthews
43V – Shane Beech
49V – Ant Cooper
98V – Gerry Linklater

GROUP ONE – Wellington, Stratford, Kihikihi
The strong team in this group was clearly Wellington, however Stratford gave them a run for there money early on in the race. Dale Robertson took a hard hit into the wall leaving him injured and the car looking very worse for wear. Kihikihi put on a good effort and im sure learnt some hard lessons coming up against these two teams. In the end Wellington skipped through to the semi-finals with 305 points.

Group Two – Waikato, Meanee, Wanganui
This group was great to watch, Meanee was out there to cause some damage! Wanganui was out to prove a point and Huntly (a very nicely presented Huntly team as always) was out there to show they are a tough team. Wooten managed to sneak through the first race for the flag while Hughes from Meanee held up majority of the Huntly cars. Jason O’Brian was chasing Wooten but not enough time as Wooten took that win. In the Wanganui vs Huntly race however, Wanganui gave it all they had and gathered some great points as well as taking the chequered flag. So all three teams had one win one loss but once the points were added up, Meanee where going through to the finals with 235 points.

Group Three – Auckland, Palmy Steelers, Rotorua Rascals
This group was clearly going to be a tough one with three tough teams. Rotorua Rascals were the favourites in the nicely presented cars. The First race saw Auckland take on Rotorua, at first it looked like it was going to be a Rotorua win with two Auckland cars up the wall, however Auckland pulled it together and with some great work from Billy Neil and Andrew Weir in there blocking roles, Peter Church took the win for Auckland. Rotorua however claimed a lot of points during the race against Palmy, they had four cars cross the line and if one more had crossed they would have beaten auckland on points. Auckland ended up through to the seim-finals with 260 points.

Group 4 – Palmerston North Pumas, Baypark Bulldogs, Gisborne Gladiators
The Palmy team was the favourite team all over the board. However Gisborne and Baypark gave it there all to try and stop them, without any luck. Palmy had a clean sweep in both races. Baypark vs Gisborne saw Baypark give out a few hits but not enough to stop the Bulldogs from winning. However Palmy had the overall highest points and through to the semi-finals.

This night it wasn’t about points, it was first across the line!

First up saw the Wellington Young Guns vs the Meanee Maulers. Everyone had seen the racing the night before and Meanee was fighting strong. 51W Richard Gaskin managed to stay out of the spotlight and just keep circulating while his team mates dealt to the meanee team. The 21W car of Dale Robertsons was back on the track but not with Robertson behind the wheel. 51W got the chequered flag and put Wellington through to the finals.

Second was the Auckland Alleycats vs Palmerston North Pumas, this was going to be the race of the night. With Auckland having a strong defence the night before and really making a name for themselves and the almighty Pumas who have been a very strong focused team. Straight off the start saw two Auckland cars up the wall with two more turned around. Palmy had a strong lead until Billy Neil took the leader to the wall and held him there for a good 3 laps. Andrew Weir managed to get off the wall to stir it up a bit more. A red light came on and 2 Palmy cars didn’t quite see that taking Peter Church out, which left only one auckland car on the track 35A Paul vazey who was leading the race. Only one more lap and 4 cars waiting in front of him. Palmy managed to hold Vazey up and let Ward sneak through for the Palmerston North Pumas win.

3rd and 4th - Auckland Alleycats vs Meanee Maulers
In the line up saw Aucklands runner Peter Church out due to extensive damage in the race before. However Auckland got off to the great start with 10A Craig Collins leading the race. Auckland managed to take out nearly all of the Meanee cars courtesy of Billy Neil, Mark Wearing and Andrew Weir. Regan O’Brian was doing some very ‘gutsy’ hits until he did one too many retiring to the infield injured. Paul Vazey in 35A took the flag with 10A Craig Collins in behind him.

Final race - Wellington vs Palmy Pumas
This must have been de-ja-vue for these teams as they faced each other the year before fighting for the same title. As they lined up fans were screaming for Palmy, fans were screaming for Wellington…the crowd was excited. 6P Graeme Ward got away and circulated somehow without getting too much attention put on him. Hilton Parker got dealt to by 5p which he ended up in his rollcage then rolled himself on the infield (some disputed this action). Peter Rees in the 4p car was a big target as was Richard Gaskin from Wellington. However 6P Graeme Ward got the flag winning it for Palmerston North Pumas.

Overall – the racing action was great, thanks to all the drivers who put there bodies and cars on the line to have a great weekend!