Accident fails to slow Piper’s race
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.
Derek Piper in action at the NZ1000.