Inaugural NT State awards a success

Monday 18 February, 2019
The Northern Territory’s historic state awards night recognised the winners and officials who have excelled in motor sport in both 2018 and beyond.
Photos: Tim Nichol

The Northern Territory’s historic state awards night recognised the winners and officials who have excelled in motor sport in both 2018 and beyond.

Acting as a joint venture between CAMS and MotorSports NT, the inaugural event took place in front of a packed house at the Skycity Beachside Pavillion with local broadcaster Charlie King host for the evening.

The first awards handed out were CAMS Service Stars, with two Northern Territorian veterans of motor sport sharing the honours. 

For his dedication and commitment to the sport for a number of years as well as being an integral part in assisting with the welfare of competitors and officials, Adam Burgan was awarded with the first CAMS Service Star.

The second award was given to Phillip Zamagias, who currently holds the role of motor sport Chaplain, providing guidance and support to competitors and officials well beyond the confines of a racing. 

Taking out the prestigious Castrol State Official of the Year award was Leonie Kerr, her professionalism in all facets of NT motor sport and the rest of the country a major factor to her win.

Kerr has been widely regarded for her systematic and thorough approach to her duties as an official in setting up, running and administering all of her club activities, all of the above making her a well-deserved winner of the award.  

It wasn’t the only award the Kerr took home with her by the end of the night, with the Central Australian Rally Cars representative also being named as the 2018 Northern Territory Motor Sport Person of the Year.

While she is the key person for running motorkhana and khanacross events, Kerr also participated at the Classic Outback Trial, running car #0.

As for the junior awards, Joshua Graveling was awarded the Castrol Junior Official of the Year after spending countless hours as a hard working official, including time at the Red Centre Nats.

Ben Atkinson was another young talent recognised for his brilliant 2018, with the driver skipping the junior classes to compete in Sprintcars. Atkinson ended the year with the 2018 Rookie of the Year and picked up 5th overall in Sprintcars point score in the process. 

As expected, the state event of the year went to the Tatts Finke Desert Race after the event saw almost 900 competitors with thousands of crew members and supporters inject around $7 million into the local economy,

The CAMS BFGoodrich Australian off Road Championship’s second round also saw the historic first live stream reach up to 800,000 viewers throughout the weekend, as well as also being acknowledged at the Brolga Tourism Awards.

While a number of officials took home individual honours, the awards night also recognised a host of club administrators for their contributions to their club,  competitors who also awarded Driver of the Year for their respective categories. 

The final set individuals to be recoginised were for the prestigious Motorsports NT Volunteer of the Year Awards, which saw 19 club stalwarts acknowledged for the hard work and dedication for the clubs. 

Since its inception in 2013, the award promotes the value and important contribution of and pays tribute to those who inspire and promote the spirit of volunteerism through their endeavours.

Motorsports NT Volunteer of the Year Award
Gary Kohlman – Acacia Hills Motorcross Association.
Michele Thompson - Arunga Park Speedway Association
Tony Connor - Alice Springs Karting Club
Chris Gibson - Alice Spring Motorcycle Club
Benjamin Oliver - Alice Springs Off Road Racing Club
Joshua Graveling - Central Australian Drag Racing Association
Evan Vale - Central Australian Rally Sports Club
Arie Mobers - Darwin Karting Association
Tim Gwynne - Darwin Motorcycle Club
Jimmy Mann - Darwin Speedway Riders and Drivers Association
John Brown - Hidden Valley Drag Racing Association
Brett Edwards - Katherine Motorsports Club
Gavin Law - Nhulunbuy Speedway
Angela Menzies - Tennant Creek Speedway Club
Stewart Baehnisch - Top End Drift Association
Jody Abela - Top End Motorcross Club
Greg Logan - Top End Mud Racing Association
Deborah Townsend - Top End Road Racing Association
Dallas Window - Territory Quad Association

Club Administrator Nominees
Territory Quad Association - Dallas Window
Acacia Hills Motorcross Association - Natasha Langkowski
Darwin Karting Association - Sharon Sealy
Darwin Motorcycle Club - Jenny Henwood
Darwin Speedway Riders and Drivers Association - Caleb Gotts
Katherine Motor Sports Club - Rebecca Thomsen
Hidden Valley Drags - Justin Neck
North Australian Motor Sport Club –Jake Burgess
Northern Territory Club Administrator of the Year Award - Caleb Gotts.  

Driver of the Year awards 
2018 NT Circuit Driver of the Year –Marian “Scab” Bujnowski
2018 NT Drifter of the Year – Patrick Barlee
2018 NT Motorkhana/Khanacross Driver of the Year – Chris McCormack
2018 NT Off Road Driver of the Year – Darren Wright
2018 NT Mud Racing Driver of the Year – Rod Gobell
2018 NT Rally Driver of the Year - Phillip Kerr
2018 NT Drag Racer of the Year - Craig Hodge
2018 NT Enduro Rider of the Year - Daniel Field
2018 NT Karter of the Year - Tony Connor
2018 NT Rider of the Year - Kristian Agostini
2018 NT Quad Rider of the Year - Brandon Geers
2018 NT Speedway Driver of the Year – Chace Karpenko
2018 NT Road Bike Rider of the Year - Joel Kelso