INDEPENDENT NEWS

Ngatoa focused on home win in Australasia’s top single seater championship

Published: Thu 11 Jan 2024 08:16 PM
Kaleb Ngatoa will be aiming to win races and fight for the championship in the 2024 Castrol Toyota Formula Regional Oceania Championship. Race winner Kaleb Ngatoa will tackle the full 2024 CTFROC Championship.Picture Bruce Jenkins
If he does, he’ll become the first Kiwi to win NZ’s premier single seater championship since it became an FIA junior category.
The 2024 championship will be the third time Marton racer Ngatoa has competed but the first time he will have taken part in all rounds and in a full field.
In 2021 the championship was badly affected by the pandemic, which caused it to be cancelled for 2022. In 2023 Kaleb ran again but only in the Grand Prix round – where he won his first race – and podium at the season finale at Taupo.
Ngatoa – who has proved his pace and won in single seaters ranging from Formula First to Australia’s S5000 series - will run with Giles Motorsport for the full campaign and says he has a point to prove.He will be supported by long-tme backers including JH Russell for the campaign.
“I’m lucky enough to have driven the FT60 a few times now,” he said “I enjoy all the tracks we’re racing and I’m really excited to get at it and race some of the best young drivers in the world.
“The Giles team won races last season and they want to win more just as much as I do. I know we both will be working just as hard to have a strong championship campaign and get the ball moving immediately.
“I know i’m going to enjoy this championship. It’s going to be tough but I enjoy good competition and hard racing, pressure is a privilege and I’m grateful to have the opportunity. I’m very focused on building on my win and pace last season. I’m already working hard and close with the team to get this campaign going.
Giles team principal Stephen Giles says Ngatoa shuld be a title challenger. “I'm excited to have Kaleb join Giles Motorsport for the 2024 Championship and I'm looking forward to seeing what we can achieve together over the course of the season,” he explained.
“Last year with very limited mileage, Kaleb came straight into the Championship and showed his talent by winning his first race with us against a very competitive field and we'll be looking to build on that relationship for a chance at winning the title.”
Ngatoa won’t have to wait too long with the season – the second edition as a full FIA Formula Regional championship – getting underway next month at the Taupo International Motorsport Park before the remaining four rounds, with the last round the 68th New Zealand Grand Prix meeting.
2024 Castrol Toyota Formula Regional Oceania Championship certified by FIA – Events
19-21 January 2024 - Taupo International Motorsport Park – Historic GP event
26-28 January 2024 - Manfeild - Circuit Chris Amon
2-4 February 2024 - Hampton Downs Motorsport Park
9-11 February 2024 – Euromarque Motorsport Park
16-18 February 2024 - Highlands Motorsport Park – 68th New Zealand Grand Prix

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