Tightest of turnarounds for Hedge

Rising New Zealand driver Callum Hedge has had a tight turnaround to prepare for the New Zealand Grand Prix at Highlands this weekend.

Hedge arrived back from Finland only yesterday, and headed straight to the track to step into his MTEC motorsport car for the first time before yesterday’s Castrol Toyota Formula Regional Oceania Championship official practice sessions.

Hedge is no stranger to the Toyota FT60, or the Highlands circuit, having competed in last year’s CTFROC Championship, claiming three wins and finishing second in the championship behind Charlie Wurz.

However, Hedge will have to get used to the Pirelli tyres being used in the New Zealand single-seater championship this year.

"I’m really excited to be able to race in the New Zealand Grand Prix at Highlands this year," Hedge said.

"Only [Thursday] I was on a flight from Helsinki to Doha, then from there back to New Zealand, and of course that was time in the air while everyone else was getting time on the track so it’s not ideal.

"Missing some of the testing is going to make for a challenge but I am up for it.

"I feel recovered from recent surgery I had on my appendix and I am very thankful to the people who made this awesome opportunity happen for me.

"There are a few goals this weekend that I want to achieve. The first is to test my body and make sure I am fit and healthy after my surgery and of course the second is to try and win the New Zealand Grand Prix at Highlands."

Hedge’s inclusion takes the field to 18 cars for the 68th New Zealand Grand Prix, the first in the South Island in 17 years and the first at Highlands, in Cromwell.

He was the US Formula Regional champion last year, and champion in Porsche’s Carrera Cup on the other side of the world in Australia.

The former NZ Formula Ford and Toyota 86 champion is set to start his first season of Indy Nxt.