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WESTERN SPRINGS OVAL SUPERSTARS



A first for Percy's NZ Speedway as we talk Minisprints for the first time in the history of this website. I also realise I have no photo's whatsoever of Minisprints! Apologies to the Minisprint community. The Oval Superstars fronted with 18 cars, perhaps the hint of rain on the weather report reducing the numbers from the initially quoted 24. Minisprints ran two heats, marble draw/reverse grid and a fastest to the front feature. 10s Shaun Dickie qualified on pole and would be joined on the front row by 57h Benjamin Vaughan. Surprise package 77h Regan Marceau started on the second row with 2nz Dean Cooper. 58s Bayley Betts joined pre-meeting favourite 1nz Jamie Larsen on the third row. If anyone else was going to be a factor perhaps 9p Kendall Savage from well down the grid was the man to watch.

Dickie got the jump from the drop of the green chased by 2nz Dean Cooper. It was quickly becoming a belated chase even in the opening laps as Dickie appeared to have the field covered for pace. Behind them you could throw a blanket over positions 3-7. 99p James Mallia right in the thick of that battle after getting a great jump from the eigth starting grid. After around three laps we had our first caution courtesy of 1nz Jamie Larsen looping it around exiting turn 4. The incident merely a continuation of what was by his standards a poor night.



However it also set up the race because from the restart we saw a re-invigorated New Zealand champion. Larsen set about quickly atoning for his earlier error, making mince meat of the back end of the field. All of a sudden the 1nz seemed to have some pace which had deserted him all night. Also making his way forward was 9p Kendall Savage. However even Savage could not resist the advance of Larsen. With Larsen back to the fifth spot we had another caution. It would start off a chain of cautions to end the race. From the restart Larsen was quickly up the inside of 77h Regan Marceau and soon enough was up to the third spot after securing the pass on 37k Jade Barnett. The cautions were proving no problem for race leader 10s Shaun Dickie who was looking very assured.

With Larsen in third we had another caution. The cautions were coming at just the right time for the 1nz and the race had a feel that we were going to see something special. Yet from the ensuing restart a new contender emerged. 37k Jade Barnett quickly made the pass on Larsen to jump back into the top three. Larsen however wasn't about to give up so easily. Coming in to Town Bend Larsen drove it hard up the inside of Barnett. As both came out of turn 4 neither driver gave an inch and their lines converged. Barnett got the worse of the contact to bring on the caution lights yet again.



With Barnett literally out of the way we had our big finale all set for the podium spots. 10s Shaun Dickie was proving to be highly proficient at restarts and once again resumed the race lead. This time however 2nz Dean Cooper was throwing absolutely everything he had into keeping with Dickie. He was closer but was just not quite close enough to make a move. Larsen meanwhile had nothing for the front two but was comfortable enough in third. The big story over the last few laps was a big charge from 37k Jade Barnett who made it back up to the 7th spot. Given he restarted at the rear of a roughly dozen car field it was impressive.

10s Shaun Dickie took the win from 2nz Dean Cooper, 1nz Jamie Larsen, 9p Kendall Savage, 99p James Mallia, 77h Regan Marceau, 37k Jade Barnett and 41p Shane Dewar.