2011 KZ2 World Champion Joey Hanssen made his maiden trip ‘Down Under’ a successful one with victory in the annual Dash for Cash event in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia on November 10.
Hanssen took home the $5,000 first prize in the event promoted by V8 Supercar driver Michael Patrizi and the Eastern Goldfields Kart Club when he crossed the line ahead of Perth driver Jason LeCocq and Italian star Roberto Toninelli.
“My first trip here in Australia and I’ve absolutely loved it. The atmosphere here was great, racing under lights was a real experience, we don’t have much of that over in Europe,” said Hanssen.
“I’d really like to thank Brendan and John Shugg from Lenzo Kart Australia, Ben Hardinge for letting me use his kart, Paul Williams for his help as mechanic and we’re going to have lots of fun tonight.”
Just as popular as Hanssen’s victory was LeCocq sterling drive to second place in the 30-lap main event.
“Maaaateeeee, how good this?” beamed LeCocq on the podium.
“I’m on top of the world, to race on the same track as these European guys is huge but to be up here with them is an accomplishment and a half. This is only my fifth race in the category so I’m just over the moon.
“I really have to thank Wayne Gough for lending me the kart and engine along with my Dad for setting the kart up and my Mum for all of her support.”
Also in attendance at the event was Birel boss Ronnie Sala and Birel Pacific President Tadashi Sasaki.
It was the first time that Sala had visited Australia and believes the Dash for Cash event has the potential to become a significant event for more European factory drivers and teams over the years to come.
“I have had a very nice time in Australia, while I haven’t seen a lot of the country, I have a lot better understanding of karting in this country from this trip,” said Sala.
“This event has the potential to be something very special, I look forward to working with Michael to help get more Europeans down here in the years to come.”
In the other Feature class, Pro Leopard, Nathan Davis was unchallenged on his way to victory ahead of Lenzo Kart Australia’s Brendan Shugg and Matt Davis.