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Christmas Takes Top Honours At Offroad Racing Shortcourse Champs

Taranaki’s #875 Dean Christmas under attack at the main jump by Whakatane’s #893 Mal Langley

Taranaki man, #875 Dean Christmas, took the gold for the unlimited race trucks Class 8, in his 2wd American ProLite race truck. Under intense pressure from an aggressive pack, that included the current national champion, #NZ1 Nick Hall, Dean kept the rabble at bay.

The Taranaki Offroad Racing Club’s Midhirst racetrack has provided the stage for offroad racing’s top competitors. On Saturday, they met for the 2021 New Zealand Offroad Racing Shortcourse Championship. Held under the auspices of the Offroad Racing Association of New Zealand, Midhirst delivered an ideal race track for the competitors vying to become a national champion.

The preceding week of rain had created a surface that had a good base of moisture. The initial heat races quickly ripped the loose wet mud off the pole line and provided a fast racing surface. However, racers that found themselves on the outside lanes of the track were in an ambush of mud. Even seasoned veterans couldn’t avoid the out of control slides and resulting spin outs.

Of those that revelled in the conditions were fourteen year old competitor #C63 Matthew Bishop racing in Challenger Class. Race two saw him go from back of the field to the lead in the first 400m of the 1.3km loop. Taking overall victory in C Class, this teenager has stamped his dominance at a national level.

Story and pictures by Philip Hagan.

© Scoop Media

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