13 Nov 2022 APC BROUGHT TO YOU BY LIQUI MOLY CHAMPIONS CELEBRATED
With the running of a fourth and final 30-minute race at the Bathurst International this morning, what has been a fantastic 2022 Australian Production Cars brought to you by LIQUI MOLY season has come to a close.
Thanks to their performances not only today, but across the season, when all was said and done it was the following racers who were celebrated as 2022 champions:
- Outright – Wayne, Drew and Aaren Russell – #58 Go-Karts-Go BMW F80 M3 (2nd – Grant and Iain Sherrin, #27 Sherrin Rentals BMW F82 M4, 3rd – Jimmy Vernon, #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X).
- Class X – Wayne, Drew and Aaren Russell – #58 Go-Karts-Go BMW M3 (2nd – Grant and Iain Sherrin, #27 Sherrin Rentals BMW F82 M4, 3rd – Beric Lynton, #23 Bruce Lynton Service BMW F80 M3).
- Class A1 – Jimmy Vernon – #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X (2nd – Dean Campbell, #118 DA Campbell Transport Mitsubishi Evo X, 3rd – Cameron Crick, #118 DA Campbell Transport Mitsubishi Evo X)
- Class A2 – Chris Lillis – #64 Cachet Homes HSV Clubsport (2nd – Matthew Holt, #65 Cavanagh Electrics HSV Clubsport, 3rd – Ben Gersekwoski, #38 KCK Lubricants/Vic’s Timbers BMW E92 M3).
- Class C – Jake Camilleri – #36 Grand Prix Mazda Caboolture-backed Mazda 3 MPS (2nd – Chris Holdt, #25 La Rocca Marble HSV Astra, 3rd – Chris Gunther, #15 Wahlstrom Financial Services BMW 130i).
- Class D – Amar Sharma and Daniel Natoli – #39 LME Care/Gtechniq Ford Fiesta (2nd – James Keene, #51 MWM Racing Mini R56 JCW)
- Class E – Allan Jarvis – #70 TOA57D Motorsport Suzuki Swift Sport
To hear what the title winners had to say about their wins, see the quoteboard below.
This weekend’s racing at the Bathurst International has had plenty to throw at the APC brought to you by LIQUI MOLY racers and this morning was no different, with rain and lightening greeting the competitors as they formed up for the fourth and final 30-minute race of the weekend, and their year.
Jimmy Vernon in the A1 #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X excelled in the wet conditions, jumping from the third row on the grid to take the lead through the first corner, where he remained for the duration of the safety car affected race to take the victory outright and in class A1 with an impressive four second gap over his nearest competitor.
The victory was especially sweet for Vernon as it allowed him to elevate himself from fourth on the outright championship standings to third, taking the final outright title podium placing ahead of Chris Lillis (#64 Cachet Homes HSV Clubsport) and Beric Lynton (#24 Bruce Lynton Service BMW F80 M3).
Finishing race four in second place was Class X race winner Aaren Russell (#58 Go-Karts-Go BMW F80 M3).
Cameron Crick (#118 DA Campbell Transport Mitsubishi Evo X) was next across the line, but received a 30-second post-race penalty for coming into contact with Beric Lynton (#23 Bruce Lynton Service BMW F80 M3) on the restart when Crick locked up on the approach to turn one while on the inside of the #23. Lynton had been second outright at the time of the contact, but dropped to 22nd outright and sixth in class X as a result (updated to 19th outright following the application of post-race penalties).
With Crick’s penalty applied, third outright and second in class X was the 4 Property Investment Store BMW F82 M4 of Adam Burges while the A2 winning Chris Lillis (#64 Cachet Homes HSV Clubsport) was fourth outright ahead of Harrison Cooper – the A1 race runner-up – in the #11 Oriel/Shore Hire/Botany Access Mitsubishi Evo X.
Chris Holdt took out the Class C victory from 23rd on the road. Second and third in class were Ric Shaw (#35 RX8 Cup Mazda RX8 – 31st outright) and Sam Silvestro (#55 S-Sport Racing Mazda RX8 – 34th outright).
The class C winner of the previous three races – Jake Camillieri – failed to finish the race after being turned around on lap three in an incident which also ended the race of Dimitri Agathos (#66 Nova Employment/FullGas Motorsport Subaru WRX Sti).
Eleven minutes were left on the clock when Camilleri was executing a move on the inside of Leigh Burges in the #33 York Miedecke Ford-backed Ford Mustang at the Chase when Burges hit the white line/ripple strip and moved sideways, tapping the back of Camilleri and sending him into a spin. Agathos was collected by the spinning Camilleri while he was attempting to avoid Burges, who was able to continue on.
The lengthy clean-up set up a two-minute/two lap dash to the flag amidst increasingly wet conditions, with Vernon quickly pulling a convincing lead off the restart while the Crick/Lynton chaos unfolded behind him.
In Class D, Daniel Natoli may have crossed the line first in class but was served a post-race penalty for a safety car restart infringement, seeing the #39 LME Care/Gtechniq Ford Fiesta reclassified to 33rd outright and second in class, with James Keene taking the class win from 31st outright in the #51 MWM Racing R56 JCW.
Allan Jarvis took another Class E win from 32nd outright in the #70 TOA57D Motorsport Suzuki Swift Sport while Andrew McMaster took the Class I win in the #62 DJA Mechanical BMW E82 125i from 26th on the road.
Joining Camilleri in Agathos in being unable to finish the race were Ben Kavich, Chris Gunther and Daniel Oosthuizen. All three entries became stranded on the track during proceedings, with Gunther the first to have his car expire with the #15 Wahlstrom Financial Services BMW 130i cutting out early. On the last lap, Kavich came to a stop while running within the top ten on the last lap in the #92 Yellow Pages Race for a Cure BMW M2, while Daniel Oosthuizen caught the kerb sliding from turn six to turn seven for contact with the wall in the #94 Oosthuizen Motorsport HSV R8. Zoe Woods did not front for the start due to a broken clutch during yesterday’s race three in the #210 TekworkX Motorsport Hyundai i30N.
Joining Crick and Natoli in earning the ire of race officials was Tony Levitt in the #16 Levitt Motorsports Mercedes C63 AMG, with Levitt incurring a 30 second post-race penalty for a safety car restart infringement to be reclassified from 10th outright and fourth in A2 to 21st outright and 10th in class.
When it came to the overall round placings following the four races of the Bathurst International, the Russells (outright and class X), Vernon (A1), Lillis (A2), Rubis (B), Camilleri (C), Keene (D), Jarvis (E) and McMaster (I) took out the round victories. The Sherrins claimed second outright and third in class X, while Vernon took out third outright for the round. Lynton and co-driver Tim Leahy secured second for the round in class X. The Campbell/Crick entry was second in A1 ahead of Cooper, while Leigh Burges and George Miedecke took out second in A2 ahead of Gary Beggs (#41 HSV R8). Sam and Ben Silvestro were second in class C ahead of Woods and Max Vidau, while Sharma and Natoli were second in class D.
With the 2022 season now complete, attention turns to what is shaping up to be a very exciting 2023 season, with the announcement made yesterday of that the Australian Racing Group (ARG) has entered an agreement to purchase an equity stake in Production Car Racing Pty. Ltd. (APC).
While retaining the major shareholding and category management of APC, PCR Ltd will also become the category managers for the GT4 category as part of the partnership.
This new agreement will see the category included as part of an enhanced media deal with the SpeedSeries, along with providing a high-profile calendar for APC, alongside GT4 vehicles from 2023, and will see both championships compete at key SpeedSeries rounds, joining the existing suite of categories at high profile national events next year.
ARG, APC and the SpeedSeries will work together to grow the profile of Australian Production Cars, alongside and in conjunction with the highly successful Hi-Tec Oils Bathurst 6 Hour – which regularly features oversubscribed fields at the Easter event. APC Competitors will benefit from the added profile at SpeedSeries rounds, which this year has featured record attendances. Coverage on Stan Sport and the Nine Network will also see APC televised nationally. For the full story, please click here.
The 2023 APC calendar is expected to be released in the coming weeks.
CHAMPIONS QUOTEBOARD: 2022 APC BROUGHT TO YOU BY LIQUI MOLY SEASON FINALE – SUNDAY NOVEMBER 13, 2022
Outright and Class X Champions – Wayne, Drew and Aaren Russell – #58 Go-Karts-Go BMW F80 M3
Wayne Russell: “We got involved in this whole thing so we could race as a family. To have me and the two boys and the whole family come away and have a lot of fun has been great and we have exceeded all expectations to be honest and had an absolute blast. The category is great, the people are fantastic, it has just been a lot of fun. I want to say thank you to Karl Begg and Troy Williams and Debbie, and Troy and Debbie who have worked their butts off over the year. I have seen Debbie soaking wet at Tailem Bend, she has been wonderful, so a big thank you to those guys, they have been fantastic.
Drew Russell: “The main thing for us is that we were able to win the championship as a family which is pretty bloody cool, and I am really stoked to be able to share it with Dad and Aaren. Racing at Bathurst is also always exceptionally cool, so to have this finale here with 45 cars with the APC has been great. The weekend threw everything at us, but we came through relatively unscathed, and we are stoked. Thank you to Go-Karts-Go for their support and thank you to the APC, Troy and Debbie for all of the work that they do to let us race cars around these tracks, we really appreciate it.”
Aaren Russell: “This has been a great weekend and it is a really special thing for our family to win the title. We came into the year just anting to race as a family and create some memories, so to win the outright and Class X championship is pretty cool and very special. It has been a pretty cool year for us all. I would like to say a big thank you to our sponsors who have come on board for the year and helped out.”
Class A1 Champion – Jimmy Vernon – #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X
“It is a big relief to have finally clinched the A1 title. It was our ultimate goal at the start of the year, and it is just surreal, but we have come through the five rounds and managed to lock it away. The last race of the season was awesome, it is always great to win at Bathurst but to get my first outright APC win was really special. It was definitely Evo weather, and I think I made up for my average performance in the wet at The Bend! The whole team is super stoked that we got to take the checkered flag first at the Mountain. The weekend was also really special for us with our roof livery carrying the images of 15 Kids with Cancer Foundation heroes and we also had a special family out here supporting us and cheering us on, so to be able to wrap the championship up with 15 superheroes riding on board makes it all the more special. I want to send a huge thank you to my sponsors, Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans, State One Fire Protection and Security and Shockwave Signs. I also want to send a big shoutout to the team at Dash Sport for getting our car ready for the last race, it was a big effort to work through some mechanical gremlins ready for this morning, but they did an awesome job. And another big thank you to the Kids With Cancer Foundation and their help with the roof livery and for supporting that program in the media as well.”
Class A2 Champion – Chris Lillis – #64 Cachet Homes HSV Clubsport
“It is really good to get the A2 title as a reward for the long year. We had hoped to get a placing outright but with the competition we have had all year, we are really happy to finish up where we have. And we are really happy with having Bathurst as the final. I got to spend the whole weekend in the car and just kept getting quicker and quicker and more comfortable, so to come home with the A2 class win at Bathurst and to be featuring in the top five outright amongst this sort of field is just as satisfying as the year-long result. It is a good way to see my car, Kate, off as well, as she probably won’t be back next year as we look to bring our new car, Ellie-May, online. All in all, it was good to have both dry and wet running at Bathurst, and considering everything our category got as much running as possible and we are looking forward to seeing where the new partnership between APC and ARG takes the category in 2023. Thank you to Matt Holt, Stewart from Metcalfe Automotive, Chris Evans, Jamie, Jay, Johnny, Josh Muggleton, Shannon and Nathan, and also to Alan and Paul from Heasman’s Steering and Suspension. The Bilstein product and the service they give is second to none and I know they are just as excited as we are to see what 2023 brings as well. Thank you also to Bill Lee for the Mobil 1 oils he supplies to us throughout the year, and to Troy and Debbie of the APC who have done a great job with running the category and making the race weekends run seamlessly. Finally, I must say thanks to Vinnie and my daughter Aiva for coming over from WA to help us out this weekend.”
Class C Champion – Jake Camilleri – #36 Grand Prix Mazda Caboolture-backed Mazda 3 MPS
“It is great to win the Class C title. 2015 was the last time that we ran, and we won the title back then and I think back then it was four years in a row. It is great to have a good run in the national series again and to win the championship again in our first year back. I must say a big thanks to Graham Murray who does a brilliant job prepping the car every time, without him we would not be in this position, so a big thanks to him. In the race today we got tagged in the back exiting a corner and there was nothing I could do and Agathos had nowhere to go so I am sorry for them – it is very disappointing, and I feel that it was avoidable. Otherwise, it was a really good weekend, we went into the race knowing we had won the Class C title, so we were disappointed to finish like that but otherwise it was a really good weekend. I love those conditions, the car felt good, and I was just cruising along and having fun. We are meant to be racing next weekend in our state championship final where we are leading the outright title, so we are trying to get the car back for that so hopefully we can go for back-to-back weekends of winning championships, which would be great, but it is going to be a busy week!”
Class D Champions – Amar Sharma and Daniel Natoli – #39 LME Care/Gtechniq Ford Fiesta
Amar Sharma: “We are pretty stoked that we could actually win the championship, we weren’t really expecting it, to be honest we weren’t really expecting to do the APC at all this year originally, so to come away with the win is something that is pretty special for us. It has been a pretty tough year, we have had some issues and things we have had to sort out and get to know the car, and it has been tough, but the band all got together and made it work and we ended up walking away with the championship which is pretty cool. Thank you to LME Care, Gtechniq and Vast Consulting for their support of the team, as well as Kelvin and Chris for always making sure that we have a well prepped car and for working together to get to the track and go quick.”
Daniel Natoli: “We are stoked to be able to have wrapped up the championship. We weren’t really looking at doing the championship this year after missing the first round so to come away with the win is really exciting for the whole team. It was an awesome weekend, and we had a good run in that last race, we did have to chase the car quite a bit across the weekend with power and handling issues, but we dug in and kept at it and kept moving on. It has been a tough week for the team leading up – our team manager is not with us this weekend as his wife sadly passed away, so this result is a tribute to those guys. Thank you to Gtechniq Australia, LME Care, Gtehcniq Marine, Vast Consulting, KCK Lubricants, and Valiryo and Oze Auto.
Class E Champion – Allan Jarvis – #70 TOA57D Motorsport Suzuki Swift Sport
“I am really happy with that! Obviously, we didn’t really have anyone to compete with which was disappointing, but a win is a win, you have to be in it to win it. I have really enjoyed being back, it was my first year back and we have had a lot of fun this year and we are definitely going to be back next year. It was amazing to be here at Bathurst this weekend, absolutely amazing. It doesn’t matter how many times you come here; this place never disappoints. Thank you to my family – mum, dad, Tara and the kids – and my crew chief, Terry. Also, a big thank you to the guys at ASAP Autocare at Nerang – without them we wouldn’t have been here this weekend as we had a gearbox failure the night before we left. They stayed back and helped us get it going. I also would like to thank all of the other APC competitors – they were really patient with me as a Class E car, I never had any complaints, never had anyone upset coming up to me angry that I had gotten in their way, it was really great, and I am definitely enjoying the category. We will be back!”