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Pukekohe ITM400

Friday Practice: This session went as well as it could have, as it was our first session out onto the new Pukekohe circuit layout, I was fairly caution for the first couple of laps to get a feel for the new parts of the track. We quickly got to grips with the new layout and posted the fastest time of the session by 7 tenths of a second. It was an awesome start to the weekend for the team.

This weekend is not one of our Championship Rounds as far as points or format is concerned. The format for this weekend is points for qualifying, Marble draw for race 1, reverse marble for race 2 and fastest times for weekend to the rear for race 3.

Friday Qualifying: We started qualifying where we finished our only practice session, quickly setting the fastest time but it didn't stand for long as Kris Walton from the Australian V8 Ute series quickly fought back setting a faster time. Each one of us kept going faster each lap until I managed to put everything together on one lap and go 3 tenths quicker than him to take pole position.

Marble Draw: I drew grid 5.

Saturday Race 1; Starting from grid 5, I got a good start and managed to make a position off the line, I slowly picked my way through the field until lap 3 when the safety car came out because one of the utes was stranded in the middle of the track. On the restart I got a good start and by the end of the lap was in the lead which I managed to keep to the chequered flag. The start of the weekend could not have gone any better.

Sunday Race 2; Reverse marble draw meant I was starting from grid 9. Starting from grid 9 meant I had a lot of work to do but I got onto it quickly and made my way through the field up to 2nd place Kris Walton who had started off the front row at this had opened up a significant lead and I had to settle for 2nd, which I thought was pretty good coming from 9th on the grid.

Sunday Race 3; The grid for this race was based on the fastest lap times from the weekend reversed which meant I was starting off the very back of the grid with Kris Walton on the row in front on me. We calculated to win the weekend all I had to do was finish within 2 positions of Kris, so I wasn't going to take any unnecessary risks if I didn't have too. Kris got a really good start and after the first lap Kris had put 4 cars between us so at this point I knew I had to pick my game up. Then the safety car came out because Rob Gibson had a massive moment coming over the top of the hill and ended up putting it into the wall. From the restart I pinned my ears back and chased down Walton, He managed to make it to the front of the field and with one lap to go I made it up too 3rd which gave us enough points to take out the round win. We beat Kris by 3 points. It was an awesome feeling being able to win the Trans Tasman at the Super Car meeting in front of 100,000 people. The team was stoked.
 
Since the weekend we have had some amazing press on Radio Live, Speedcafe (link below) and in the paper and I am told this round will be on TV on Sunday at 8.30pm on Sky Sport 1.

http://www.speedcafe.co.nz/?s=chris+hanley&cat=10%2C11%2C12%2C13%2C14%2C15%2C23%2C65%2C80%2C19&x=14&y=10

We have had a change to our calendar due to our November Cromwell Round being postponed until the New Year. The good news for our North Island followers though is we will be at Pukekohe on the 25th - 26th May with the SuperTourers. So if you couldn't make it to the Super Car meeting last weekend hopefully you will be able to make it to Pukekohe in May.
Thank you to everyone for your support and it was great to see so many of you last weekend.

 
Kind Regards,

Chris