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Third Round Win For Whiter, Second Podium For SVG

CODY'S D1NZ NATIONAL DRIFTING CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES
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* 2013/14 CODY'S D1NZ National Drifting Championship Series
Rnd 5
Mike Pero Motorsport Park

Christchurch
Sat-Sun
April 19-20

2014

ROUND 5 REVIEW

21-04-14

Third Round Win For Whiter, Second Podium For SVG

Three-time former D1NZ champion Gary 'Gaz' Whiter (Tectaloy Nissan S14 V8) is back on top of the Cody's D1NZ National Drifting Championship leaderboard after top-scoring in qualifying and claiming his third round win of the season - as well as victory in the BP Triple Crown series-within-a-series - at the Christchurch round of the 2013/14 series on Sunday.

The big surprise for many at the meeting at the recently re-named Mike Pero Motorsport Park (nee Ruapuna), however, was the performance of V8 Supercar ace Shane Van Gisbergen. In only his second season contesting the Cody's D1NZ championship the 24-year-old - who shares the BOC Gases/Speedstuff Ford Falcon V8 with good friend Shane Allen - qualified 12th but won all bar his final battle with Whiter to take second, his best result since his breakthrough third place at the opening Cody's series round at Hampton Downs in November last year.

Making it an all V8 podium was Tauranga driver Drew Donovan (Milwaukee Tools Nissan S15 V8) who finished third for the second year in a row at the Christchurch round of the series.

Fourth overall was another V8-powered car, this time the Achilles Radial-backed Mazda RX7 V8 of Mount Maunganui round winner Andrew Redward, fifth the first of the turbocharged sixes in the form of the Autosure Warranties-backed 2JZ Toyota-powered Nissan Skyline R34 coupe of Curt Whittaker.

Heading into the Christchurch round Auckland-based international 'Mad Mike' Whiddett (Red Bull/Speedhunters Mazda RX7 & RX8) had a commanding lead in the series points standings but that evaporated in the heat of competition in Christchurch thanks to a broken gearbox in his number one car (the Madbul RX7) and a broken axle (n his second (the Badbul RX8).

Whiddett qualified eighth but after going One More Time was eliminated in his first (Top 32) battle with Tauranga driver Dave Steedman (Mimico Nissan S14) and is now second in the series points standings, with new leader Whiter on 442.5 points, Whiddett 412 and 2011/12 series title holder Curt Whittaker third with 359.

Best of the large contingent of local drivers to enter the Cody's D1NZ series round was Phill Sutherland who qualified and finished sixth. Fellow Christchurch driver Chris Jackson remains the best placed South Island series regular, however.

Jackson qualified 10th, but finished 18th, slipping back (from ninth) to 11th in the overall series points standings.

There has also been a change at the top of the Pro-Am class points standings with series newcomer Tom Marshall (ATJ International Nissan S13) from Waipapa in the Far North losing his lead to category regular Vincent Langhorn (Nissan Laurel) after Langhorn claimed his second Pro-Am round win in a row on Sunday, this time from fellow Aucklander Gareth Grove (NZ Spill Response Nissan S14) and Taupo driver Rene Richmond (ILS Mazda RX7/8).

There was also a surprise - particularly considering the high-speed nature of the Ruapuna drift section - in qualifying when Hamilton-based series rookie Joel Paterson top-scored in his Toyata AE86, ahead of Langhorn and another class rookie from Hamilton, Jase Brown.

Langhorn now leads Pro-Am with 396 points, 13 more than Grove who has moved up from fifth to second with Auckland's Joel Hedges (C's Garage Nissan S13) third a further 19 points back.

The focus of the Cody's D1NZ series is now on the Grand Final, which will be held under lights at Auckland's Mount Smart stadium on Friday May 23 and Saturday May 24.

Ends


2013/14 CODY'S D1NZ National Drifting Championship Series Rnd 5 Mike Pero Motorsport Park Christchurch Sat-Sun April 19-20
RESULTS
Round points
1. Gaz Whiter (Dargaville, Tectaloy Nissan S14 V8) 112 points
2. Shane Van Gisbergen (Gold Coast, BOC Gases/Racestuff Ford Falcon V8) 89
3. Drew Donovan (Tauranga, Milwaukee Tools Nissan S15 V8) 83
4. Andrew Redward (Auckland, Achilles Radial Mazda RX7 V8) 79
5. Curt Whittaker (Auckland, Autosure 2JZ Nissan Skyline R34) 67
6. Phill Sutherland (Christchurch, Drains & Development 2JZ Nissan Cefiro) 65

Series points after Rnd 5 of 6
1. Gaz Whiter 442.5
2. Mike Whiddett 412
3. Curt Whittaker 359
4. Andrew Redward 345.5
5. Daniel Woolhouse (Castrol Edge Holden Commodore V8) 316
6. Nico Reid (Luxury Sport Nissan S15) 295.75
7. Cole Armstrong (V Energy Nissan Skyline R34) 292
8. Shane Van Gisbergen 284.25
9. Drew Donovan 277.75
10. Darren Kelly (Auckland, Thirsty Liquor Nissan Skyline R34) 251.25

BP Triple Crown (Rnds 1, 4 & 5)
1. Gaz Whiter 328 points
2. Curt Whittaker 228
3. Andrew Redward 211

Pro-Am
Round points
1. Vincent Langhorn (Nissan Laurel) 110
2. Gareth Grove (Auckland, Spill Response NZ Nissan S14) 94
3. Rene Richmond (Taupo, ILS Mazda RX7/8) 80
4. Michael Thorley (Auckland, Femme Fatale Nissan Laurel) 71
5. Joel Paterson (Hamilton, Toyota AE86) 73
6. Joel Hedges (Auckland, C's Garage Nissan S13) 65

Series points after Rnd 5 of 6
1. Vincent Langhorn 396
2. Garth Grove 383
3. Joel Hedges 364
4. Tom Marshall 362
5. Joe Marshall 346
6. Michael Thorley 325

Calendar
Rnd 1: Sat-Sun Nov 16-17 2013 Hampton Downs
Rnd 2: Sat-Sun Dec 14-15 2013 The Toll Concrete Jungle Whangarei
Rnd 3: Sat-Sun Jan 18-19 2014 ASB Stadium Mount Maunganui
Rnd 4: Sat-Sun Feb 22-23 2014 Ricoh Motorsport Park Taupo
Rnd 5 Sat-Sun April 19-20 2014 (Easter) Mike Pero Motorsport Park (Ruapuna) Christchurch
Rnd 6: Fri-Sat May 23-24 2014 Grand Final Mt Smart Stadium Auckland.

Prepared by FAST COMPANY of behalf of D1NZ. For more information about the 2013/14 Cody's D1NZ National Drifting Championship contact Ross MacKay on 021 677 919 or via e-mail on ross@fastcompany.co.nz If you would like to talk to D1NZ Director Brendon White he can be contacted on 0-9-534 6090, 021 274 5580 or on brendon@d1nz.com. To check out the DINZ website go towww.D1NZ.com. You can also stay in touch with D1NZ by following its facebook page at www.facebook.com

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