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Hampton hopes for third crown

2012 Burt Munro Challenge

NEIL RATLEY
Last updated 15:03 25/11/2012
Alister Stewart and Rob Henderson
NEIL RATLEY/Fairfax NZ

Burt Munro fan Alister Stewart, left, meets Burt's grandson Rob Henderson ahead of the Toy Run.

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Burt Munro Challenge

Street racing and whitebait patties Are you part of the Legend? Southern hospitality a winner for victor Close racing entertains keen crowd Two motorcyclists suffer serious injuries Challenge draws big bucks Competitors take on Teretonga Two challenges, nine bikes and cheap beer Riders from all over NZ take up Challenge Baynes wins the Burt

The streets of Wyndham roared to life as racing got under way in the rural Southland community today.

The Wyndham street races will bring down the curtain on the seventh Burt Munro Challenge.

Cloudy skies but dry, perfect conditions welcomed riders and thousands of fans for one of the favourite events of the challenge.

Ahead of defending his crown, Christchurch Superbike rider, Ryan Hampton said the event held sentimental value.

''My Grandmother was born and lived in Wyndham'' he said.

''It's great to be able to come back to a place where my family has such a close connection to.''

Hampton, gunning for his third Formula Wyndham street racing championship in a row, said the street races provided a fantastic experience for the riders and the fans.

''The crowd really gets into it because they are so close to the action''.

Hampton was with his father Robin and brother Blair who both also said coming back to Wyndham was something special.

Earlier in the day, hundreds of riders rolled out of Invercargill as part of the 25th World's Southern Most Toy Run.

The toy run an annual charity fund raiser for several worthy causes. Along for the ride was Nelson man Rob Henderson who had a unique connection to the Burt Munro Challenge.

''I'm Burt Munro's grandson,'' he said.

Despite being modest about his relationship to the man who inspired the challenge, Mr Henderson said it made him very proud to see such a successful event in his grandfather's honour.

For Christchurch Burt Munro fan Alister Stewart, finding out he had parked next to Burt's grandson was a surprise.

''That is the great thing about this event. You never know who you are going to run in to.''

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- The Southland Times

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