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Sidecar champs now set for March

THE wet weather got the better of Gisborne Speedway Club at the weekend.

After three attempts to stage the New Zealand sidecar championship meeting, the club postponed it until March.

A wet track stopped the qualifying rounds on Friday night and, despite a reasonable amount of sunshine during the day on Saturday, the track was still too wet to race on.

The club tried again to run the meeting from 1pm on Sunday, but the persistent showers continued to make the Eastland Group Raceway track too dangerous for racing.

“We had the track graded again on Saturday night but overnight further rain soaked in and softened the track too much,” club president Clyde McGrory said.

“It was just too dangerous for the bike riders.”

A line of 30 sidecar combinations from across the country had come to Gisborne for the championships.

“After Friday's practice they told us they could not believe how fast and smooth the track was,” McGrory said.

“Then the rain came.

“They told us on Sunday the decision to postpone the meeting was a good call.

“They were really worried about riding on the wet track.

“So we have decided to reschedule the championhship for March 6 and 7. We were planning to run the sidecar champion of champions that weekend anyway.”

The weekend meeting was also to have been the third and fourth rounds of the Eastland TQ Masters series, with a dozen cars from around the North Island here for it.

“The TQ guys were disappointed as well, but the track was way too wet for them, too,” McGrory said.

“Those final two rounds of the TQ series will be staged at a date to be set.”

Rain-out passes were given to people who attended on Friday night. A good-sized crowd was building when the rain came.

“Those passes will be honoured at any other meeting this season,” McGrory said.

“We appreciate the support of our fans and their understanding.”

The club's next meeting will be on February 1. It will feature the coveted Ashley Scott Memorial for stockcars, as well as racing for saloons, production saloons, streetstocks and youth ministocks.

Riders were disappointed this weekends sidecar championships were rained out, but felt the decision to reschedule to March 6 and 7 was a good one. A line of 30 sidecar combinations from across the country had come to Gisborne for the championships. File picture