Ac­ci­dent fails to slow Piper’s race

Matamata Chronicle - - Sport -

De­spite hav­ing an ac­ci­dent dur­ing the NZ1000, Derek Piper has im­proved on his 2013 re­sult.

In his buggy the Mata­mata res­i­dent placed third in class three and 20th over all out of 89 rac­ers at the off-road event that ran on Septem­ber 26 and 27.

He com­pleted 500km each day in the Ngatira For­est lo­cated be­tween Toko­roa and Pu­taruru.

In 2013 he fin­ished fourth in his class and 32nd over­all out of 125 in the same buggy.

On Septem­ber 25 Piper, and the rest of the field, ar­rived for scru­ti­neer­ing in Toko­roa.

The pits be­came a gi­ant mud hole which made the time tri­als hard the next day.

He qual­i­fied 53rd. The next day they got to see the track for the first time.

It in­cluded fast open gravel roads, farm land, very slip­pery clay ar­eas and very tight tracks through the pine trees. In the first lap he was in­volved in an ac­ci­dent, which dam­aged the car.

When he got out of the car at the end of the race he said he could hardly stand for a good half hour - ‘‘some from the ac­ci­dent in the first lap and mostly hav­ing the car set right.’’

Piper and his pit crew made some changes to his car that night which helped him get speed up over the re­ally rough track and plane across the top of it. ‘‘It is an awe­some feel­ing to be able to do this and tells you that you have a

not good car’’. On the last day of rac­ing he ended up fin­ish­ing 20th. He wanted to thank his fam­ily, crew and spon­sors as ‘‘they all made it one hell of a week­end for the team’’.

Piper would be spend­ing $2000 on re­pair­ing and main­tain­ing his bat­tered car to try and get it sorted for a meet­ing at Bay Park Speed­way on De­cem­ber 12. Piper was asked to get a group of cars to­gether to race three demon­stra­tion races at one of their meet­ings. Piper hopes to have 35 to 40 cars go­ing over jumps dur­ing the race, which he will have built just for the event.

PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Derek Piper in ac­tion at the NZ1000.

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