All systems go for season opener

Last updated 12:00 07/03/2014

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Manawatu racers are aiming for a strong start to their championship year when the New Zealand Offroad Racing Championship begins at Feilding on Sunday.

The Palmerston North Offroad Racing Club has built a new 1.4km course for the event and club spokesperson Andy Briggs said Manawatu racer Martin van der Wal will be bringing out his spectacular V8 ThunderTruck.

There is a strong spread of entries in all 12 classes. In unlimited class one for open-wheel race cars, a battle of the V8s is brewing.

The 2013 class champion, Tony McCall, is bringing his BSL Terra Chev to race new rival Ernie Hogg in the "General Lee", a Scorpion Chev in the livery of the Dukes of Hazzard's iconic Dodge Challenger - complete with confederate flag.

Also contesting class one is Auckland's Gregg Carrington-Hogg in his Chev-powered two-seater.

‘At the other end of the spectrum, Trae Carrington is in the youth category for Kiwitrucks, miniature race trucks with motorcycle engines.

Jaden Carrington will go wheel-to-wheel with Tony McCall's son Ollie, and Tyler Castle in the class-seven field for race cars with 1.2-litre VW engines.

Multiple class-seven champion Taine Carrington starts the 2014 season in the family's very fast class five car.

The newest class is for the Polaris and CanAm UTVs, with national class champion Ben Thomasen of Tauranga competing.In the truck classes, Wellington's Glenn Turvey is bringing his American-built Toyota to race against the local version campaigned by Rex Croskery of Te Puke.

In a first for offroad racing, there will also be static displays of military vehicles and four-wheel drives from the New Zealand Military Vehicle Collectors Club and the Manawatu Four Wheel Drive Club.

Racing starts at 10am on Sunday at 127 Kawakawa Rd.

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- Manawatu Standard

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