The Wanganui Warriors Superstock team is primed and ready for its annual pilgrimage to Palmerston North.

And they will take an army of supporters with them.

The ENZED Superstock Teams Champs is one of the highlights of the speedway calendar.

Held annually in February at Arena Manawatu since its inception in 1981, success has been elusive.


The Warriors were runners-up to Palmerston North B in the inaugural event, and although they have appeared in numerous finals over the years, they have yet to win the big prize.

The 2019 team has a solid look about it, with a mix of youth and experience.

Team captain Dion Mooney first competed at Teams Champs in 2007, and has provided highlight reels of his own.

Mooney's uncompromising driving style has won him a legion of fans, but at times he has been hampered by driving borrowed cars.

This year, Mooney will be driving his own car, which he debuted just before Christmas.

The Toyota-powered car is fast and strong, the ideal Teams Champs combination, and with Mooney behind the wheel, could be just what the Warriors have missed in previous seasons.

Wanganui Warriors Dion Mooney, 6V, and Shaun Smith, 53V, will put their new cars on the line this weekend.
Wanganui Warriors Dion Mooney, 6V, and Shaun Smith, 53V, will put their new cars on the line this weekend.

Scott Duncan makes a return to the team after a season off recovering from a stem cell transplant.

He has improved with every outing this season.


Shaun Smith makes up a trio of local drivers whose fathers were also top Warriors drivers.

Smith has been campaigning a brand new Nissan-powered car this season, and already has a number of wins to his credit, leading the season-long points battle at Fast Lane Spares Oceanview Family Speedway.

Palmerston North driver Chad Ace returns to the Warriors after his debut last season, and although short on racing this season, he is a skilled driver.

Maddie Wise from Hawke's Bay completes the team.

The five-time national Karting champion was one of the stars for the Hawke's Bay Hawkeyes last season, but was unexpectedly left out of the Bay team.

Ironically, the Warriors have drawn the Hawkeyes as their first opponent in qualifying races on Saturday night.

Their second race is against the Wellington Wildcats.

The teams have not met since 2015, when the Warriors were victorious on their way to a final against the Palmerston North Panthers.

One win on the first night should see the team progress to the elimination races on Sunday night, and if they were to win both races, they would be a likely semi-finalist.

Local driver Carl Burns will be the reserve driver.

Burns returned to racing earlier this season, and the experience of being part of the team will be invaluable for him.

Whanganui locals will have a chance to meet and greet the Warriors drivers tomorrow from 5pm to 7pm at Display Associates, 341 Victoria Avenue.

As well as the cars being on display, there is Wanganui Warriors merchandise for sale, free posters and spot prizes.

The local business community has been hugely supportive of the Warriors, with more than 20 companies sponsoring the team.

The Warriors drivers and their pit crews have put in long hours in their sheds this week, getting the cars ready for battle.

On Saturday, all that hard work will be put to the test as thirteen teams go into battle.

Near sellout crowds of around 15,000 per night will be on hand to watch the action, where no quarter will be asked or given, and where anything not only can happen, but probably will.

The Wanganui Warriors are perennial crowd favourites, and if they can get the monkey off their back this weekend there would be no more popular victors.