Invercargill's Conroy in unfamiliar territory

19:48, Jan 28 2014

After nine straight wins in the New Zealand Formula Ford Championship, Invercargill driver Jamie Conroy faces his biggest challenge of the season when he lines up for round four at Hampton Downs in North Waikato this weekend.

Conroy has never raced on the undulating 2.7-kilometre Hampton Downs circuit before and the only time he has seen it was when it was under construction prior to its opening in 2009.

"It will be a completely different set of challenges this weekend, but we are ready for that," Conroy said.

"I have only seen the place before it was built when the track was completely clay. I have been watching YouTube videos to learn my way around. It looks like it has a fair share of fast, flowing corners which should suit the Mygale."

The Mygale is the chassis that Conroy has driven to a 100 per cent record in the championship to date.

While he has been the man the rest of the field have been chasing in the first three rounds, Conroy is expecting Wanganui driver Aaron Marr to be on the pace on the North Island.

Marr, driving a car similar to Conroy's, is currently third in the championship with 468 points.

Conroy leads with 675 points, 72 ahead of Christchurch driver Michael Collins.

While Conroy is facing the final three rounds of the championship on tracks he has never raced on before, Collins has the advantage of having contested the full championship last year and has raced at Hampton Downs and the venues for the final two rounds, Manfeild Park in Feilding and the Taupo Motorsport Park.

While he has compiled an impressive winning streak, Conroy said his focus was on the championship as a whole, not winning individual races.

After qualifying on Saturday morning Conroy will line up for the first race of the fourth round that afternoon, before two more races on Sunday.


The Southland Times