Teenager sets sights on race
When the Woodhill 100 is raced on Sunday a teenage driver will have no hesitation taking on the veterans.
Taine Carrington, 13, of Kumeu will be the youngest competitor in the 31-year history of the annual off-road event.
But in his rookie year he has already shown he has the talent to tackle this gruelling event through Woodhill Forest.
The Massey High School student races a 1200cc VW engined single-seater offroad race car in the New Zealand Offroad Racing Championships.
In his first season of racing he is leading the North Island and national 1200cc class seven series after the first two North Island rounds.
Having won at the first short course round at Meremere in appalling bog conditions, he also won the second round at Palmerston North at Easter.
There he won his class and was placed fifth overall in the second day’s 150km endurance race through farmland and forest tracks against 22 other drivers. Taine was awarded the driver of the event trophy.
He is joint points leader in the Auckland Offroad Racing Club series, the All Terrain Racing Club points table, in the top five of Counties Manukau Offroad Racing Club points, and is seventh overall in the North and South Island combined points for the New Zealand title.
The Woodhill 100 is a 210km endurance sprint race where the fastest offroad cars and 4 x 4s in New Zealand contest one of offroad racing’s most prestigious crowns. It is also the longest running motorsport event in the country.
This is also the first round in a new fourround endurance series for the Hammer Down Enduro Crown.
The Offroad Racing Association has recently initiated a new youth development programme to enable young racers from as young as six to enter various types of racing levels in a safely contained vehicle.
The newest is the Kiwi Trucks event catering for eight to 15-year-olds which will debut a mini endurance series as a curtainraiser at Woodhill.
Taine was previously a motocross quad bike rider and says the closed-in car is much more fun. He is fully harnessed in a roll cage so feels safe at any speed.
Whatever the outcome Taine will travel to Napier in July for the third North Island National Championship round in the Gwavas Forest. He intends to gain maximum points to carry to the North/South final for the New Zealand title in Nelson in October.
High hopes: Thirteen-year-old Taine Carrington of Kumeu is ready for the gruelling Woodhill 100 on Sunday.
Flying: Taine gets airborne.