Hill climb question for speed championship leader

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The leader of the Otago Sports Car Club’s speed championship could be in for a challenge at the club’s hill climb this Sunday.

Kaikorai Valley driver James Mitchell is on top of the Otago Sports Car Club’s speed championship.

But club president Daniel Cresswell said he expected Mr Mitchell to face a strong challenge from former national hill climb champion Bruce Saxton, of Dunedin, who would return to compete in Sunday’s hill climb on Church Rd at Omimi near Seacliff.

“He’ll be a hot contender to win the event. He’ll give James a bit of a hurry up.”

Weather from both extremes could affect drivers on the challenging Church Rd track, Mr Cresswell said.

“Sun strike is bad on this hill. Fog and snow could potentially be a problem this weekend. It goes from one extreme to the next.”

If the road was not difficult enough, adventurous drivers could take on an additional challenge.

“For those slightly quicker people who are a little bit more daring, there’s a jump around the corner.”

Between 20 and 30 drivers are expected for the event, which is the penultimate race for the 2016/17 speed championship.

The winner of the race would be the driver who could “hold their breath the longest”, Mr Cresswell said.

Mr Saxton has not raced in a hill climb for six years, but did not think he would have difficulty returning to racing.

“I would imagine it’s like riding a bike.”