Christchurch driver Josh Mitchell’s need for speed saw him win the Shayne Adams Memorial Street Sprints for the second time at the weekend. He also won in 2018.
Mitchell was driving a 1997 Subaru WRX which had a 2.5 litre Turbo boxer engine with 500hp and a six speed sequential gearbox; all home built from a standard road car.
Glenn Frew, of Mosgiel, driving a Mitsubishi EVO took second and Cody Scott, of Geraldine, in a Mazda RX7, third.
Ashburton Car Club’s Daniel Tew said it was a brilliant weekend and a fitting tribute to late president Shayne Adams who died in March after a health battle.
The sprints started with drivers, pit crew and officials gathering in foggy conditions to form a guard of honour as Shayne’ ashes, accompanied by Shayne’s son Corey, took one final lap around the Shayne Adams Memorial Street Sprints course with competitor and friend Pete Templeton.
It was followed by a warm up lap for drivers and included Shayne’s daughter Kaitlyn alongside driver Donn McLaren in his customised Mazda Escort.
The fog lifted by the start of racing.
“I think we did 100 per cent justice to Shayne and everyone else. The team was awesome,” Mr Tew said.
Former car club members such as Neville Gibb, who had a long association with the Ashburton club, helped on the course in tribute to Mr Adams.
Mr Gibb took up his position at the starting line in a role he did many years ago.
He was equipped in the early part of racing with an imposing rake. It was changed later in the event.
Mr Tew, as club vice-president took on the clerk of the course role, which gave him a new appreciation for the work Shayne had done in the past.
However there were no real dramas for anything, he said.
“The rain caused a little bit of a problem on the Sunday afternoon because that messed up all results for everybody.
“The cross cars were doing 2.23.92 I think was the fastest but … when the rain hit in the elimination, they got thrown straight out, they couldn’t compete.”
Despite the fast paced action which saw a first run with a few prangs, a bonnet fly open, a front wheel fall off and oil spill there were no injuries over the rest of the weekend and just two decent crashes with drivers hitting the hay bale safety barriers, he said.
One car needed its front rebuilt after hitting the bales front on during Saturday racing, but it was done overnight and the driver continued racing the next day.
Driver Mark Halliday, of Ashburton, counted his losses after he lost the front wheel off his Mitsubishi EVO 1 in the first run and eventually swapped out his vehicle for an RX7 to continue racing.
Shayne’s wife Kim was thankful to everyone for making the event the most memorable send off possible.
“This year’s event was the hardest thing for me and I appreciate all of the kind wishes, hugs and thoughts everyone gave me over the weekend,” she said.
She congratulated the winners for putting on an excellent show and thanked the competitors, volunteers, community groups, timekeepers, officials, sponsors, spectators and businesses who supported the event.
She paid special thanks to drivers Donn McLaren, Gordon Beeby and Peter Templeton for taking family members including Shayne for a ride during the event.
“They all had a fantastic weekend and everyone made them all part of our motorsport family,” she said.