Consistent results have proved successful for young Alex “Big Mac” Hawley after taking the lead of the Manfeild Winter Series. While the Pukekohe racer remains winless, Hawley has finished on the podium after nearly every race thus far.
Sickness struck Amy Smith early in the week and prevented her from testing on Saturday, meaning Sunday would be a big guessing game. Unfortunately, Smith was caught out by the greasy conditions in qualifying and left the circuit at turn one and was not able to set a lap time. Further troubles in race two saw her points lead slip further away.
New driver to the class for the weekend, Nathan Sudiono, claimed an outstanding pole position in qualifying. The rookie was the only driver to crack the 1:31’s and was an impressive 0.5s faster than any of his rivals.
Race one was a closely contested affair with Billy Frazer and Alex Hawley taking it down to the final few meters. An intense final few laps on drafting tactics saw Frazer lead Hawley out of the final corner before Hawley pulled alongside to try out-drag him, but he was unable to do so, giving Frazer his maiden win.
Race two saw a similar battle take place up front, this time SpeedSport Scholarship winner Conrad Clark lead Hawley to an almost photo finish. Another close draft up alongside the car in front was again unsuccessful for Hawley, falling short of the win by just 0.056s.
The final race was shaping up to be a five-car draft fest down the back straight but that didn’t eventuate after inexperience caught some out and left Callum Crawley and Billy Frazer drive away with first and second position.