Karters from all over New Zealand will be in Hawke’s Bay this weekend, helping the local KartSport club kick off the ‘next 50 years’ of competition at the 51st two-day Blossom Festival Grand Prix sprint meeting.
The annual two-day meeting at the KartSport Hawke’s Bay club’s Carter’s Tyres Raceway at Roys Hill on the outskirts of Hastings has been a fixture on the KartSport New Zealand calendar for as long as most current karters can remember.
Members of the Hastings-based KartSport Hawke’s Bay club, take great pride, in fact, in the knowledge that their annual ‘Blossom’ meeting is the longest-running sprint kart event in the country, with the first one staged as a then-popular ‘road race’ round a street course in Hastings in September 1968 to help raise funds for the very track they compete on today.
With its traditional first-weekend-in-September date the Blossom meeting heralds the end of winter and coming spring and summer season with a unique two-day format which sees drivers race round the 687m track in a clockwise direction on Saturday then in the anti-clockwise direction on Sunday.
A special feature of the meeting over the past few years has been the appearance – for demonstrations on both days – of a number and variety of Vintage Karts. The club has also been at the forefront of a move to provide races for Yamaha KT100 powered karts which, up until recently, were the mainstay of club-level competition in both the Junior and Senior ranks.
As well as heat races across all classes, this year’s event will also feature stand-alone Grand Prix races including the main feature, the Giesen Classic Cuvee Blossom Open over 50 laps with cash prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd placegetters
There will be racing action on track both days with tuning runs from 8.00am on Saturday and 8.45am Sunday and racing from 8.45am on Saturday and 9.30am on Sunday.