Emerson wins super Saloon crown
Spectacular Levin racer Brent Emerson conducted a successful defence of the North Island Super Saloon Car title at Mount Maunganui’s Baypark Speedway last Saturday night.
The Pontiac pilot won both the NZ title and the North Island Champs last season.
“I wanted to back the titles up this year and I missed out at the New Zealand champs,’’ Emerson said after winning the 20-lap North Island championship final.
The title saw 28 cars in action with the Baypark track running a time trial, heat race, dash and B-main format leading to a 20-car final over 20 laps.
Tauranga Pontiac racer Shane McIntyre set the fastest time in qualifying with his committed 16.85-second lap the only effort to better 17 seconds.
Emerson was fourth quickest with Wellington’s Martin Halcrow and Tauranga racer Dean Waddell second and third.
Heat race wins went to national champ Tony Cardwell (Auckland), Halcrow and Emerson. The dash which decided grid positions for the final was won by Emerson to secure pole position with four-time champ Waddell on the outside in his Corvette.
Taranaki Mustang racer Richard ``Bunter’ Pierce and McIntyre lined up on the second row.
The 20 laps were completed caution-free with Waddell gaining the early lead until Emerson found an inside passing opportunity on lap five and hit the front.
The chase through lapped traffic provided some exciting moments but Emerson squeezed through the gaps and edged away to win by three seconds from Waddell, with McIntyre close behind ahead of Halcrow, Wellington’s Mark Pitcher and Cardwell.