New Zealand’s closest racing series is set for another season of epic racing with an increased grid set for the opening round at Manfeild next weekend.
The first of eight rounds of the Hi-Q Components NZ Formula First Championship takes place at Manfeild next weekend and the series’ famously close racing is set to be closer with a 20 car field confirmed for the season opener.
Amongst the bolstered field are seven rookies all keen to show what there made of against some of the countries most experienced racers and young guns. Four of those rookies will have a leg up on the remaining three, having all competed in the Manfeild Winter Series prior to the National Championship.
Kaleb Ngatoa took top honours at the Winter Series, taking the championship win in the final round over fellow rookie Callum Crawley. Dylan Smith and Bayley Walker also showed some impressive pace which should see them competitive in the National Championship.
It’s not the just the rookies who will be putting everything on the line. Matt Podjursky, Bramwell King and Chris Symon will all be vying for the championship after strong results last season.
The 2016/17 season also sees Hi-Q Components welcomed back on board as naming rights sponsor of the class. Hi-Q Components have been long time supporters of the class and the announcement of their second consecutive season as naming rights sponsor shows the strength of one of New Zealand’s oldest motorsport classes.
Starting at Manfeild on October 22-23 for the opening IRC event the series will then venture to Taupo again as part of the IRC for the weekend of November 19-20.
After the Christmas break the first outing for 2017 will take place at recently completed Hampton Downs circuit for the NZ Motor Cup as part of the Premier Motorsport support series’ on January 28-29. The following weekend the championship returns to Taupo again as a Premier Motorsport support series.
It’s then back to Manfeild on February 18-19 for the third round of IRC before the Hampton Downs doubleheader on March 11-12 and 25-16. The season finale will then take place in it’s traditional home at Taupo on April 15-16.
2016/2017 Hi-Q Components NZ Formula First Championship:
Round 1: Manfeild – 22-23 October 2016
Round 2: Taupo Motorsport Park – 19-20 November 2016
Round 3: Hampton Downs – 28-29 January 2017
Round 4: Taupo Motorsport Park – 4-5 February 2017
Round 5: Manfeild – 18-19 February 2017
Round 6: Hampton Downs – 11-12 March 2017
Round 7: Hampton Downs – 25-26 March 2017
Round 8: Taupo Motorsport Park – 15-16 April 2017