It was a luckless outing for four Whanganui drivers at the New Zealand Superstock Championships on Saturday.

56V Kerry Podjursky finished eighth in his heat, missing a finals berth by two places, and 81V Max Holloway and 52V Mason James both experienced mechanical failures.

In a case of bad luck turned good, 53V Shaun Smith rolled during the qualifying heats, but his car landed back on its wheels and he continued the race.

Despite not qualifying for the final 26, vice president of the Wanganui Stockcar and Speedway Club Tony Stuart said it was important that the drivers competed.


"It's really important, especially with Whanganui hosting the championships next year. The more experience they get now, the better they'll be then," Stuart said.

"We only had two travel to compete last year in Auckland, so four was pretty good. The class is definitely building up in numbers at the moment."

The winner of the championships held at Woodford Glen Speedway in Kaiapoi, 17km north of Christchurch was 41B Jason Long.

Long is a member of the Hawke's Bay Mitre 10 Cup rugby team and is the son of speedway legend Murray Long.

He will have a change of number to 1NZ which he will drive into Whanganui in 2020 where an expected 100 cars will compete in the championships.

Stuart said that hosting the event is a very big deal for Whanganui.

"There will be about 8000 spectators each night. Some of the competitors will be staying here for four nights, so they'll be putting money into the local economy.

"Crowds will come from all over the country and the event also gets livestreamed on the internet. So people from Australia and the UK particularly will be watching."

It will be the fourth time that the Wanganui Stockcar and Speedway Club has hosted the championships and the first time they have been in Whanganui since the 07-08 season.

The action continues at Fast Lane Spares Oceanview Family Speedway this Saturday with West Coast Stockcars and the Oceanview 5000 Youth Minis.

Stuart said that the Youth Minis represent the drivers of tomorrow.

"The guys that are getting on the podium at national events in stockcars and super stocks are guys that started off in youth ministocks," he said.

"It's a really good breeding ground."