Team Jenkins SEASON UPDATE - D1NZ Grand Final

Well, what a massive last few months it has been for everyone at Team Jenkins HQ.

We recently completed the D1NZ National Drifting Championship off with Round 5 - The GRAND Final at Auckland’s Pukekohe Park Raceway in New Zealand. To start, Pukekohe is somewhat a HUGE round for us being not only in our home town , but also being super close to our Naming Rights Sponsor - Brian Roberts Towing. To add , this track is well know for it’s high entry speeds which ensures all drivers give full commitment when entering the drift section. Consisting of a large right hand sweeper followed by  a couple of tight turns - all drivers have to bring their A Game to this track to ensure that you don’t end up in the wall. Over the 2 Day Competition Weekend - We saw multiple cars making contact with the outer barriers and sand traps - Something the Team Jenkins Silvia’s were lucky not to touch once!

To start the 3 Day Weekend , Friday kicked off with a relaxed Setup and Test Event which allowed us to unload our large amount of gear and setup our pits to ensure we were all set come the competition day on Saturday. Testing proved valuable to both Troy and Ben - giving the team time to trial adjustments to the tyre pressures , Suspension Dampeners and ride heights. By that afternoon , both of our Team Jenkins Nissan Silvia’s felt strong and ready for more practice and qualifying throughout Day 1 of the D1NZ Competition.
Saturday and Day 1 of D1NZ started off well with the weather playing in our favour for the first time in 3 years of competing at Pukekohe Raceway. We didn’t waste any time in speaking to the D1NZ judges to ensure we got the line right before our morning practice session. Completing multiple laps and gaining feedback from our Spotters and Judges , both Ben and Troy felt strong before heading into the qualifying session later that afternoon. The weekend wouldn’t be right without a quick speed bump being thrown our way with Troy blowing a Differential on the last corner of the section in Practice. With plenty of time to spare - Our Crew quickly got the new Differential installed into the rear of the RB30 Powered S15 and we were back on the Tarmac to get one last practice right before Ben’s Qualifying session.

Pro Sport Qualifying kicked off with a bang as the first few drivers launched into the wall as they over did their entry speed into the first corner. Ben being told by our spotter just to keep it cool - he put down a fantastic first and second run , putting him in 2nd place for the main game later that day.

Troy’s Pro Qualifying session followed shortly after. And after watching the Pro Sport Session - Troy knew that the judges were rewarding big commitment and speed into the first corner. Using that knowledge , Troy entered into the section with a speed of 182KM/H. Followed by a large amount of angle , Troy put the Brian Roberts S15 into the Top 5 Qualifiers straight away. Feeling confident he wouldn't move much from that spot. Once the Qualifying Session had finished , we were placed in 7th Spot for the main game - giving us a By Run first up and moving Troy straight into the Top 16 Battles.
With it unknown what Mother Nature would throw at us in regards to the weather over the weekend - D1NZ Organiser Brendon White signalled to get as many of the Pro Sport Battles completed on the Saturday as possible. From this , Ben’s Pro Sport Battles commenced with our first battles being up against another S13 Silvia , but powered by a crazy V8 Engine. Ben drove a clean and precise lead run , followed by a very good chase behind Jase Brown in the S13. Taking the win from this battle - Ben then moved up to battle yet another S13 Silvia , but this time that of Scotty Dinsdales. Another close battle from both of the S13’s , it was Scott who would be in error on his lead run , giving Ben the win again and moving him up to Top 4.
Top 4 would prove interesting as the driver that Ben was supposed to battle unfortunately having to DNF as he had a large amount of damage from colliding with the previous car he battled with. This wasn’t the way we would have liked to win , but we moved up to battle for 1st and 2nd straight from that! 
The Battle for 1st and 2nd would be the biggest we had seen. With the fast entry and 2 very good drivers , both Fans and Our Team were on the edge of their seats to see what would unravel in the final battle. A very clean chase run from our opposition gave Ben the energy he needed to stay up close on his opponents door. Ben did just that! And managed to put his Brian Roberts S13 on the rear wheel of the C33 Laurel that he was battling.  Everyone was ecstatic! It wasn’t until Sunday’s podium that we found out that Ben had won first place for the Round! An AWESOME result to end the season on a high for both the Team and our Sponsors!
Troy had a very similar scenario in the Pro Series - With receiving a By Run straight into the Top 16 - He would battle Team DSR’s Adam Davies first off. This was someone who Troy has battled many times before in the past. 
As Troy had qualified the highest out of the 2 - This meant he led first. Entering the section at pace , Troy put down a very clean lead run to which Adam made an error behind him and put a wheel off in the chase. After our Spotter notified Troy of this , he knew that we would have the advantage. Not backing off though - Troy followed Adam down the front straight at close proximity. Only to be signalled by Adam that he had an issue with his car right before the Sweeper - Giving Troy the win straight away and into Top 8.
Top 8 saw us up against the Championship Leader - Cole Armstrong. Both Troy and the Team knew this was going to be a HUGE battle , so we would have to give it our all if we wanted to continue on from here. Troy didn't hold back! And put down a very tidy and close chase run first off , followed by an unfortunate error shown by Troy when he went slightly wide on the last corner , giving Cole extra points for managing to grab the last inner clip. It was here unfortunately that Troy’s weekend would end as the win was awarded to Cole - He then also went on to win the Round AND the Championship for the season!
To finish - This whole Season has been a learning curve for Team Jenkins Motorsport. Introducing another driver - Matty Hill from Australia , To run under the Team Jenkins umbrella for the season - Whilst also developing our cars further to ensure we remain competitive and consistent throughout the Championship Season. We believe that we have gained some crucial data and track time on each of these tracks , only to not get that special Podium Finish until the Final Round of D1NZ. We have seen the Team Jenkins Motorsport Car’s compete in 7 Competition Events , Along with 2 Special Show & Shine events to which we had the cars on display for both the Sponsors and Fans to check out the cars up close and personal.

- Troy and Ben Jenkins
Owners / Drivers of Team Jenkins Motorsports

 

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