The forthcoming NZ Endurance Finals on the fabulous Hampton Downs International Motorsport Park ‘long’ track will make history in several ways, but one of the most significant will be the inclusion of the country’s first national Two Hour final.
The Two Hour format has been one of the major success stories of New Zealand motorsport in recent seasons. And while other codes and categories have struggled in the COVID era, the Two Hour competition at the North Island Endurance Series – which pioneered the concept – has thrived.
The secret to it is the lap time limit for cars and teams entering and that has meant big fields of home-built and home-engineered cars that will tend to be based on Hondas, Mazdas, Toyotas, V8 Utes and a few other club-style cars as opposed to the exotic GT type machines that grace the One Hour and Three Hour Championship fields.
By restricting the speed of cars that can enter, it’s made the whole competition accessible to a large number of drivers and cars who get their moment in the sun – or the rain – over the course of an epic day’s endurance racing.
Add to that the huge mileage each driver gets over the course of practice, qualifying and the race and the resultant opportunities to learn more about the track, their car and things like tyre performance and degradation. It’s easy to see why the Two Hour has pulled in so many drivers and such a diverse range of machines.
“We could see a gap in the marketplace for an endurance race specifically for club level racers and that is why we focused on criteria for eligibility that was based around those types of cars,” said NZ Endurance Final promoter Speed Works Events’ Geoff Short.
“It’s an event at the finals we expect to see oversubscribed quickly and of course we will give priority to those drivers and teams who ran in the events at the North Island Endurance Series.
“We’ve seen multiple winners over the last two seasons and some great racing where tactics, driving skill and car set up have been the deciding factors. There are some truly gifted drivers, engineers, car builders and engine tuners who come along to take part and it’s great to see.
“We’re just delighted that in these challenging times we can take them all racing doing what they love and that they can take advantage of a very rare opportunity to run on the full Hampton Downs layout.”
Entries for the New Zealand’s first ever Two Hour national final over the weekend of April 8 and 9 are now open and drivers can enter by clicking on the link below.
TWO HOUR ENTRY FORM:
Main Image: Matt Smith