Japanese ace and multiple Race to the Sky winner Monster Tajima set the fastest qualifying time for this year’s 10th running of the event.
Tajima continues to dominate
April 8, 2007. 5.15pm. Nobuhiro (Monster) Tajima’s domination of the qualifying action continued at the Race to the Sky this afternoon when he topped the timesheets in the second session.
The Suzuki Vitara special driver posted a time of 8 minutes 12.7464 seconds, to lead Kenneth Eriksson (Subaru Impreza, 8m 24.6390s).
Aucklander Andrew Hawkeswood was third-fastest with 8m 38.8617s in his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8.
In the rallycross shuffle to determine the final starting order, the top five, counting down to final runner were Eriksson (five who didn’t start the shuffle after striking a mechanical problem); Carl Vaughan (Lancer Evo); Gilmour, Hawkeswood and Tajima.
Tajima leads session one
April 8, 2007, 12.30pm. Seven times winner and defending champion Nobuhiro (Monster) Tajima was comfortably fastest in yesterday afternoon's first qualifying session for the 10th Anniversary Silverstone Race to the Sky, at Cardrona, near Wanaka.
Tajima’s 8 minutes 22.1828 second run up the 15 kilometre climb in his Suzuki Grand Vitara special was 9.3599 seconds quicker than his major rival, Kenneth Eriksson of Sweden in a Subaru WRX Impreza.
Eriksson had a small electrical problem just before the run, but event organisers allowed him to start despite arriving 10 minutes after his scheduled time.
Aucklander Andrew Hawkeswood was the quickest New Zealander, driving his Mitsubishi Evo 8 up the hill in 8 minutes 48.6687 seconds, to set the third fastest time.
Australian Brett Hayward was next in his Suzuki AWD3 open wheel special with 8m 52.0539s. Quad competitors with a time of 9 minutes 02.2487 seconds, good enough for fifth fastest overall.
Other Kiwis in the top 10 included Carl Vaughan (Lancer Evo) with 9m 11.1628s;
Peter Jackson (9m 14.8788s), and Glenn Inkster (Evo 6.5, 9m 14.8855s).
Emma Gilmour completed the top 10 in her Subaru Impreza WRX. She had bounced back from mechanical problems that kept her out of the morning's practice session.
Photo caption: Emma Gilmour has qualified 10th fastest for the 2007 Race to the Sky.