And my quest to hit 500,000 kilometers in my Fiesta ST.

Highlands Tracklaps Breakfast

Fiesta Kilometers:

How about starting your Sunday morning with a couple of fast laps of a spectacular racetrack & a cooked breakfast? We’ll that’s what we ended up doing.

Rising early on the Sunday morning, we departed at 7am to make the three hour drive up to Highlands Motorsport Park in Cromwell.

We arrived just after 9am and pulled into the main carpark.

Entering the reception area, we paid for our breakfast and laps. The reception staff provided us with chits for breakfast, which are to be handed in once our laps had been completed.

Once back outside, we had to place a sticker on the top corner of our windshields and then make our way over for the safety briefing – which basically told us to be sensible, don’t pass anyone and to tune our radios into the local station, so that the safety crew could communicate to all vehicles if something went awry.

Once the briefing was complete, we waited for the prior group to complete their laps before our group could make our way onto the track. The group that we went out with were really good and kept good pace behind the safety car. I had to try and keep pace with the Euro Accord Mugen that was in front of me! Speeds were limited to around 130kph, as nobody had roll-cages, helmets or overalls on.

In order for you to classify for the fast laps, all passengers need to be adults. If you have children in the cars, then you have to wait until the last run of the day at 10am, where the safety car doesn’t go quite as fast. A pretty cool experience for the kids none-the-less!

Once the laps are complete, you park up and head in for your breakfast. Below are a few shots of cars that had already completed their laps.

As the Central Otago weather was delightful, we sat outside on the balcony for breakfast where we could watch the next couple of groups do their laps. Notice the rental Toyota Corolla that somebody decided to do laps in!

Before we left, we had another look around the carpark. Here were a couple of my favourites.
* The brown MK2 Cortina looked great. Can’t wait to get my Cortina finished and on the road next year – I’ll have to bring it to Cromwell for a couple of laps.
* The Peugeot 205 GTI in black was in amazing condition. I’m pretty sure the owner said that he’s had the car for 19 years. We used to own a red 1991 GTI.
* The TVR Cerbera in this very unusual blue/silver colour that changed depending on where you were standing. When the owner was doing laps, this car had the most aggressive sound of all the cars on track and was very distinctive.

Heading back to Invercargill via Frankton, I decided to pull the ST onto the edge of the Lake at Kingston for a couple of photos. This didn’t end so well… With the assistance of some very friendly fellow-Invercargill-ites that happened to be in Kingston, a Dodge Nitro and a Rav 4 had to end up dragging the car via the rear axle back onto solid ground. Won’t be doing that again!

Overall, a very cool outing for a Sunday morning and I’m looking forward to repeating the experience again in another vehicle next month!

4 Responses to Highlands Tracklaps Breakfast

  • Love the photo at Kingston Lake, even if it meant getting stuck in the gravel/sand and having to be rescued by fellow motorists! This looked like a fun event at Highlands Motorsports Park. Was it your first time putting the ST into a performance driving situation? Next time take a video camera so we can take part in the action!

    • Hi Tyson, yep – the first time that the ST has really been in any scenario of this sort. It was a pretty cool experience and the track was so much bigger when you actually drove it. It’s hard to comprehend how some of the endurance drivers can do hours of high-paced laps around that place and keep concentration the entire time! Video is definitely one thing I was missing – I’ll be sure to take the camera this coming weekend when we go again.

  • Beautiful photos, Adam! I bet that ST handled the track like a champ. Loved that little Peugeot 205. I bet it’s about as fun a ride as your ST.

    • Thanks for the feedback on the photos Jason! The car does a superb job of “hunkering” down when you go around corners, it just never seems to feel like you’re pushing it beyond the capabilities of the chassis. The owner of the 205 cut a few more laps after his breakfast again, so he must have enjoyed the first few. Hope your week is going well!

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