DUBBO REVS UP FOR ROTAX NATIONALS
The Lincoln Country Raceway in Dubbo has come alive to the sound of high-revving kart engines ahead of this weekend’s Australian Rotax Nationals to be held at the New South Wales venue.
With more than 160 competitors from various parts of the country, and New Zealand, converging on the regional centre it’s not just the Dubbo Kart Club that will benefit either.
In excess of 500 visitors are in town for the event, varying from drivers, mechanics, team members and officials, many of whom began arriving on Wednesday to begin their preparations.
“Over the past 12 years, the Rotax Nationals has developed into a very significant event on the Australian karting calendar and I’m sure everyone will enjoy their time in the Dubbo region this weekend,” said Australian Karting Association National President Craig Denton.
“We estimate that the event will inject more than $300,000 into the local economy when you consider the amount of accommodation, meals and other associated spending that comes with everyone’s visit.”
It is the first time the Dubbo Kart Club has hosted a stand-alone National Karting Championship since the 1995 Australian National Sprint Kart Championship. It was at this event where current NASCAR star Marcos Ambrose was victorious, as was Ford Performance Racing V8 Supercar driver Mark Winterbottom.
This weekend event doubles as the final stanza in the Rotax Pro Tour, a point score that determines Australia’s representatives at the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Final in Portugal later this year.
Having dominated the Rotax Heavy category over the past 12 months, reigning National Champion Troy Woolston has already secured his spot on the grid for the November 28-December 1 event, however, he’s more determined than ever to win his third national title this weekend.
“I’ve been here once before and I won, so hopefully I can do the same this time,” said Woolston.
“It’s nice to already have enough points to have secured a spot in the team for the World Final, with that being out of the way I can concentrate just on winning this weekend without any added pressure.”
Victorian Daniel Rochford has competed extensively throughout Australia and Europe during his 14 years in the sport and believes the layout of the Lincoln County Raceway is one of the most challenging he’s competed on.
“The Dubbo circuit is great, it’s got some fast flowing sections and also some slower technical parts as well, it’s got a bit of everything,” said Rochford.
“The track layout is definitely up there with some of the best I’ve raced at throughout my career, it’s very challenging.”
The RJ Garage Doors-backed driver will be lining up in the Rotax Light category where he will be one of 45 drivers looking to stop the dominance of David Sera who has won the past five championships in the category.
“It’s always good to have Dave back, he brings a lot to the class and he’s already told me that he’s here for one reason and one reason only, that’s to beat everyone,” said Rochford.
“During practice it has been Pierce Lehane that’s been setting the pace though, hopefully we can catch him tomorrow.”
Practice for the event will continue throughout this afternoon ahead of qualifying and heat races tomorrow. The pre-finals and finals will be contested on Sunday.
The Lincoln County Raceway is located on the Newell Highway, just north of Dubbo. Admission is free for spectators.
Rotax Nationals Honour Roll
2001 – Matthew Wall (Vic) – Arrow
2002 – Josh Arandt (Vic) – Arrow
2003 – Bart Price (Vic) – Arrow
2004 – Scott Auld (Qld) – Arrow
2005 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2006 – Hayden McBride (NSW) – Gillard
2007 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2008 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2009 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2010 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2011 – David Sera (Vic) – Arrow
2001 – Damien Meyer (NSW) – CRG
2002 – Brett Davidson (Vic) – Arrow
2003 – William Yarwood (Qld) – Arrow
2004 – William Yarwood (Qld) – Arrow
2005 – William Yarwood (Qld) – Arrow
2006 – William Yarwood (Qld) – Arrow
2007 – Kel Treseder (Qld) – Top Kart
2008 – Kel Treseder (Qld) – Kosmic
2009 – Matthew Wall (Vic) – Arrow
2010 – Simon Meyer (NSW) – CRG
2011 – Troy Woolston (Vic) – Intrepid
2009 – Ben Jurczak (Qld) – Redspeed
2010 – Jonathan Venter (NSW) – Kosmic
2011 – Joseph Mawson (NSW) – Arrow
2001 – Eastern Creek International Karting Raceway, Sydney, NSW
2002 – Todd Road Karting Complex, Melbourne, Vic
2003 – Mt Sugarloaf Raceway, Newcastle, NSW
2004 – Ipswich Raceway, Ipswich, QLD
2005 – Beckley Park Raceway, Geelong, Vic
2006 – Mt Sugarloaf Raceway, Newcastle, NSW
2007 – Ipswich Raceway, Ipswich, QLD
2008 – Todd Road Karting Complex, Melbourne, Vic
2009 – Eastern Creek International Karting Raceway, Sydney, NSW
2010 – Ipswich Raceway, Ipswich, QLD
2011 – Beckley Park Raceway, Geelong, Vic