|Not a member? Sign up now!|
Cambridge driver Nick Ross just can't wait for this weekend for when he gets back into the drivers seat at what promises to be the NZV8 event of the season.
Of course not only will it be a big occasion for the drivers in the local series but huge for the Australian V8 Supercars as well who are racing at Hamilton for the first time at Round Three of their championship.
I am of course referring to this weekend's Hamilton 400 held at the brand new street circuit within the city's Frankton district.
With an estimated attendance of 180,000 over the weekend the local organisers are hoping to beat the highest recorded attendance at Bathurst which currently stands at 182,000. With the amount of excitement that is building and media attention the event has generated, the ticket sales have been very strong leading up to the event and they look as though they will meet their target and perhaps get their wish.
NZV8 driver Nick Ross has every reason to be excited at the prospect of racing at the new street circuit. He will be competing at high speed through some of the very streets he learned to drive on. This time of course he will be going a lot faster as he can do it with no traffic, no traffic lights and no traffic officers to get in the way.
There could be one thing that will slow this speedster down however, with the Waikato region suffering through a terrible drought for the majority of this year, there is some feeling through the motorsport fraternity that there could be a change due over the days leading up to the racing - or worse - during the event.
"I can't wait for this weekend but you can almost guarantee that when the racing starts it will be the day the drought breaks! I love the rain but it's not much fun when you're in amongst concrete walls." he says.
The arrival of rain in the near future would of course be good news for the stricken region.
Leading up to the Hamilton 400 Ross has been mixing his fitness regime with some sneaky homework by riding his bike from his home in Cambridge to the Hamilton circuit where he has been able to take a close up look at the layout and track conditions.
"I found out where the bumps are and just how hard the concrete walls are." laughs Ross.
"I've raced on a street circuit before and most of the other drivers haven't so it will be a learning curve for a few people that's for sure." said Ross who has competed at the Melbourne GP in the Aussie V8 Ute Series.
"It will be quite different from Melbourne though which is quite wide. There are some wide parts at Hamilton but also some narrow sections." he says.
This week Nick Ross has been taking kids for rides around the circuit (while still a public road) for the Bruce Tronell Motorsport For Life Trust.
"The kids loved it and I ended up taking more adults than kids. I'm not sure who was more excited." says Ross who taxied people through the circuit in a modified Holden SS Commodore.
Several NZV8 teams and drivers donated their 'shadow' vehicles or street legal race cars plus their time to help out Bruce Tronell to support the trust which in turn helps families of children with cancer.
This weekend will surely be one not to miss with some great racing from the NZV8s and the V8 Supercars from Australia on the brand new untried or tested circuit. Hamilton City expects the event to have a festival atmosphere complete with concerts, various activities and displays.
The action starts on Friday 18th with practice sessions for all classes and races on Saturday and Sunday.
Our thanks go out to all our sponsors: TOTAL Oil,Parker ENZED,Porter Hire,Strautmann Hopkins,Arai, C & R Developments,Classic Cover Insurance,Auto Trail Ltd,SBS Brakes Leamington Auto Electrical,Cambridge Panelworks,3M,