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Cronin conquers Teretonga conditions


Christchurch driver Matt Cronin overcame the conditions to win three from three in the OSCA Saloon car races at Teretonga Park on the weekend. The event, presented by Fulton Hogan, was held in wet conditions causing several spins and resulting in some drivers sitting out the event as they did not have suitable tyres.

Cronin, in his 2.5 litre Toyota Levin, handled the tricky conditions best to win the opening race for the OSCA category from local driver Colin Dawson and another Christchurch racer, Geoff Washbourne in a Holden Commodore. Cronin then beat Washbourne and yet another Cantabrian, Dave Agnew in a Volvo C70 to win the second race. The third and final race, a handicap event, saw Cronin complete the treble heading home Dawson in his Mazda RX8, Lawrence Knowler of Invercargill and Washbourne.

Meanwhile Caine Lobb, formerly of Whangarei but now of Christchurch, showed similar dominance in the South Island Formula Ford class winning all three races for the single seaters. Lobb headed home Nick Donaldson and local Steve Heffernan in the first two races and then won the final race from Dunedin driver John Whelan with Heffernan third. Whelan had earlier retired from the opening two races. Although not racing a Formula Ford, Alf Dryden of Dunedin also raced in these fields picking up two seconds and a third on the road.

The weather threw up a new winner in the Noel McIntyre Drainage Clubmans Group A races. Shaun Blondell of Dunedin in a Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 5 led home Glen Michelle of Dunedin and Bradley Dawson of Invercargill in the two races for the class. Dawson then won the 1301 - 1600cc race from Gareth Irwin and and Jeremy Skeggs while Ivan Harvey won the 1601 - 2500cc race from Aaron De Clifford. Glen Michelle went on to win the over 2501cc race from Regan Lindsay and Robert Ralston. Unfortunately Scott Laurence of Invercargill badly damaged his Mitsubishi EVO 3 against the bank in one of the Group A races.

Gareth Irwin drove exceptionally well to win both Group B Clubmans races, the first from Ivan Harvey and Tony Forde, the second from Regan Lindsay and Harvey.

The next meeting at Teretonga Park takes place on Sunday 3 December.

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