It was business as usual at the opening Manfeild winter series round for the Shepherd Racing Team with the Go Rentals car leading the field for the majority of the 3 races. However it wasn’t 5 times champion Michael Shepherd at the helm but younger brother Rowan driving the car in his first official race weekend.
It was a very impressive weekend for Rowan (19) who finished every race on the podium with two thirds and an impressive race win. Ryan Hellier (Runner up in this year’s national championship) finished the round on top after winning the other 2 races.
Qualifying on the front row, Rowan made great starts in all 3 races and led every race into turn one. The young rookie fought hard with Ryan Hellier and Michael Scott as he gained more confidence to run wheel to wheel at times passing around the outside of the Manfeild circuit.
“Rowan has proved in karts that he can drive well and win races but the way in which he mixed it up today was very encouraging and rewarding. The lap times continue to drop and im sure once we get the good engine, and other components in the car we should be right there. For now though it’s time to ensure he gets as many laps and races under the belt and learns as much as possible.” Said team manager John Shepherd.
When asked how he rated his first race weekend, Rowan simply said he was;
“Happy, but disappointed that i made some silly mistakes that cost me positions at critical times. I’m looking forward to the next round and testing at Taupo and Hampton Downs.”
Rowan sits third after the opening round on 195 points, behind Ryan Hellier (204), Michael Scott (201). The next round will be held early in July.