What do racing icon Kenny Smith, rally driver Emma Gilmour, motorcycle champion Andrew Stroud, V8 star Shane Van Gisbergen and two-time world touring car champion Paul Radisich have in common?
They’ll all be contesting the Right Karts Celebrity Charity Kart Challenge at CRC Speedshow this month.
Smith, Gilmour, Stroud and Radisich join V8 racers Greg Murphy, Craig Baird, Angus Fogg, Andy Booth and Jason Bargwanna, along with former motorcycle Grand Prix racer Graeme Crosby, speedway champion Michael Pickens and racing icon Rod Millen to create this very special line-up of racing talent.
The Right Karts Celebrity Charity Kart Challenge takes place at 3 pm on 20 July, the first day of the 2013 CRC Speedshow at the ASB Showgrounds in Auckland.
“Just think about the years of racing experience in a field like that! Ken Smith has been racing for more than 50 years by himself, then add in Rod Millen, Murph, Paul Radisich and the others,” says CRC Speedshow Director Ross Prevette.
Each celebrity racer has been invited to nominate a charity with CRC Speedshow putting up a $500 cash prize for the winning driver to donate to their charity.
Kiwi motorcycling legends
Kiwi motorcycle racers Burt Munro, John Britten, Graeme Crosby and Ivan Mauger are among a line-up of 17 New Zealand Legends of Speed being highlighted at July’s CRC Speedshow.
Ross Prevette,created the Legends of Speedshow concept to acknowledge the considerable success that New Zealand racers have achieved internationally over the past 50 or so years.
“It’s been incredibly exciting getting to know more about the successes of racing legends like Munro, Britten, Crosby and Mauger, as well as our other legends,” he says.
“Burt Munro’s son John, for example, is bringing along some of trophies won by Burt over the years and Wayne Alexander, the owner of the replica Indian bike built for the movie The World’s Fastest Indian, is allowing its display at CRC Speedshow. What’s really cool is that this bike has also been raced at the Bonneville Salt Flats.”
Burt Munro made his name after setting various world speed records at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the United States on his self-modified 1920 Indian motorcycle. The last record Munro ever achieved in 1967, when aged 68, still stands today and was set in the under-1000 cc class with a recorded speed of 295.453 km/h (183.586 mph).
Joining Munro’s Indian in the Legends of Speed display is John Britten’s carbon fibre Britten Daytona V1000. This bike was the first Britten ever constructed and, having been damaged in the Canterbury earthquakes and now repaired, will be making the trip from Christchurch courtesy of BikeTranz, motorcycle transport specialists.
Champion racer Andrew Stroud, one of the few people to have had the privilege of racing a Britten superbike and a four-time winner of the Battle-of-the-Twins at Daytona on a Britten, will also be at the show.
Former Grand Prix motorcycle road racer Graeme Crosby has many victories to his credit, including winning the famed Isle of Man TT, the Daytona 200, the Imola 200 and the Suzuka 8 hour race.
Crosby owns a number of the bikes he’s raced over the years and brings two examples to CRC Speedshow: one of his favourites, the Suzuki XR69 he rode to two world championship victories and two TT wins and the 1979 Moriwaki which houses a tuned Z1 1000cc engine raced in another TT campaign.
Wrapping up the two-wheeled section of the New Zealand Legends of Speed display is six-time world motorcycle speedway champion, Ivan Mauger, who secured more than 30 additional motorcycling titles around the world during his 28-year career from 1957 to 1985.