Champions clash at Wanaka
Lithuanian Jurgis Kairys is known for his unorthodox aerobatic manoeuvres and will be a major drawcard again at Warbirds Over Wanaka.
World aerobatic champion and past Warbirds Over Wanaka participant Jurgis Kairys plans to give four-time Bathurst V8 Supercar winner, New Zealander Greg Murphy, a chance in a head-to-head clash at Easter’s international airshow.
Murph will be behind the wheel of a Lamborghini Supercar when he takes on Jurgis, flying a Sukhoi 29, in a dash along Wanaka’s runway at lunchtime on both airshow days. The Highlands Motorsport Park Lamborghini Superleggera is capable of accelerating from 0 to 100km/hr in 3.4sec, and its top speed of 325km/hr is similar to the Sukhoi’s.
To give Murph a chance, Jurgis is planning on flying upside down just to even up the contest.
Murph is looking forward to being at the airshow. “It’s been many years since I’ve been at Warbirds, so I am very much looking forward to bringing all the family down, including my Dad, for what will be my perfect weekend, aircraft and cars.
“I’m not sure how I’m going to go against Jurgis, and if he wants to fly upside down that’s fine, just as long as I’m not expected to drive backwards or something.”
Murph is also looking forward to watching the #GigatownWanaka Jet Racing, billed as “the world’s fastest motor sport”.
“That is going to be something to watch. I’m bit of a speed freak but I’m glad it’s those guys flying those jets and not me,” he says.
When not being driven by Murph, the Lamborghini will be on public display at the airshow. It is normally based at Highlands Motorsport Park where people can book a ride in it around the circuit.
Highlands will be holding a Festival of Speed classic and historic event during Easter. Warbirds and Highlands are offering a combo ticket — one day at Warbirds, one day at Highlands.
- Report by John King, photographs via WOW
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