07 Aug SUNDAY SMILES IN QUEENSLAND FOR APC BROUGHT TO YOU BY LIQUI MOLY FIELD
Drew Russell has put in a blazing drive in the Class X #58 Go-Karts-Go BMW M3 from the rear of the field after last night’s DNF to take the Sunday morning Australian Production Cars brought to you by LIQUI MOLY victory ahead of Fight in the Night winner, Beric Lynton.
Lynton and co-driver Tim Leahey would secure the outright and Class X victory for the Queensland Raceway round overall courtesy of their consistency across the weekend (2nd, 1st, 2nd) in their spare #23 Bruce Lynton Service BMW M3, which was brought into service this weekend following a fire in their original steed on Friday.
Russell crossed the finish line 4.8 seconds clear of Lynton this morning, with Adam Burgess in the #4 Property Investment Store BMW M4 third outright and in class X ahead of the #27 Sherrin Rentals BMW M4 of Iain Sherrin and Grant Sherrin, which secured the Class X and Outright runner-up honours for the weekend. The Burgess/Soole entry was third for the round in Class X.
Rounding out the top five in today’s race was Ben Gersekowski in the #38 KCK Lubricants/Vic’s Timbers BMW M3, with Gersekowski claiming the A2 race and round win ahead of the second-placed (race and round) #64 Cachet Homes HSV of Mathew Holt and Chris Lillis. Gersekowski also clinched third outright for the round. The #7 Local Legends Ford Mustang of Grant Denyer was third for the round in class, despite not taking part in today’s race.
Next on the road was Jimmy Vernon, who by crossing the line in 7th outright this morning ahead of Tony Levitt (#16 Power Torque Engine & AMG Spares Mercedes C63 AMG) and Hadrian Morrall (#99 Parramatta vehicle Services Mitsubishi Evo X) secured his third A1 race win of the weekend to secure the class round win in the #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X. Second in class overall was the Morrall/Tyler Mecklem combination ahead of Dean Campbell and Grant Johnson in the #118 DA Campbell Transport Mitsubishi Evo X.
Other race and round class victories were claimed by Jake Camilleri (#36 Grand Prix Mazda-backed Mazda 3 MPS – C class, 11th outright this morning), Amar Sharma and Daniel Natoli (#39 LME Care/Gtechniq Ford Fiesta – D class) and Allan Jarvis (#70 Suzuki Swift – E class), with Camilleri and Jarvis each claiming three race wins each this weekend. Second in class for Class C was claimed by Zoe Woods who was making her national series debut in the #210 Teckworkx Motorsport Hyundai i30N alongside mentor and Bathurst 1000 winner Luke Youlden, with the #25 Prime Motorsport Astra of Chris Holdt claiming third for the round.
The #7 Local Legends Ford Mustang (Grant Denyer – broken clutch), the #19 One World Charter/Griffith Corp Mercedes A45 (Mark Griffith – damage after hitting tyres) and the #40 Btuned Euro Specialists BMW M4 (Karl Begg/Stephen Jukes – turbo failure) all failed to take to the track this morning following their issues in last night’s Fight in the Night.
Failing to finish today’s race were the #15 Prime Motorsport BMW 130i of Chris Gunther and Mitch Randall (misfire) and the #115 MotorsportSales.com.au BMW M3 of Chris Begg and Ashley Hooper (mechanical issues), with both entries forced to the pits in the first 10 minutes of the race.
The Australian Production Cars brought to you by LIQUI MOLY will next be on-track for round three at Sandown Raceway across September 16-18.
QUOTEBOARD: ROUND TWO, APC BROUGHT TO YOU BY LIQUI MOLY (AUGUST 7, 2022)
Outright and Class X Round winner: #23 Bruce Lynton Service BMW M3: Beric Lynton and Tim Leahey
“Friday wasn’t a great day for us obviously. We don’t know the extent of the damage, but it probably is not as bad as I first thought standing in pit lane watching it. We will assess it over the next few weeks and see. We had to get the grey car which has had an electrical gremlin for which we have a new computer coming from Germany, but it isn’t here yet, so we loaned another one hoping it might work and we got it going at 9.30pm Friday night. We brought it up Saturday and hoped it would work for Tim starting race one from the rear of the grid. Tim had a blistering race and used up his new tyres and new brakes nicely to come second, so we were able to start the night race from second on the grid. The car is not launching when you put the throttle down, it has a pause for some reason, so I didn’t get a great start. I did get around the outside of Wayne Russell into one and two and I think he was too busy looking to the inside and pushed me wide a little, so I lifted and went backwards and then just worked forward, giving the car to Tim in the lead. It really then came down to pit stop strategies with, at that stage, Karl Begg and the Sherrins. The Sherrins pitted for fuel before us, so we knew how much they put in, so we called it a bit shorter knowing we didn’t need a full tank as the race was time certain and not going to go full distance. Then the late safety car made it interesting, but Tim is quick, and we got the win which was great considering how we started the weekend. In today’s race, I started from pole and the car had its pause again off the line, so I got blown to the weeds by three of them, but got back to the lead before the end of the first lap and drove away. I knew that Drew Russell was super quick and coming, but I probably didn’t expect him to be second quite so quickly. We had a great race, and he finally had a big dive, I wasn’t blocking or anything and in the back of my mind I was thinking about the round win, but he had a dive, then I had a dive back at 6 and we went side by side through six fighting a bit. But then I felt the tyres going off and for me, it was a case of I am not going to be able to do it as the tyres are gone and managing a round win for us is a good thing for the team considering what happened on Friday which was not normal for us – that was the first time that had ever happened to us. So, it was about the round win and bouncing back for the team. It was a good result, and I am happy that we got a national round win for the grey car now too. Thank you to Aaron, Kurt, Ralph, Matt, Clark, Tim and the rest of the team.”
Class A1 round winner: #50 Hunter Pacific Ceiling Fans Mitsubishi Evo X: Jimmy Vernon
“It has been a pretty good weekend; we basically threw the kitchen sink at the car after round one. We had been suffering from pretty significant tyre degradation at Sydney Motorsport Park, so we basically completely changed the set-up of the car and did a few upgrades and when we came out, we were faster from the outset, so everything went to plan this weekend. The Fight in the Night was definitely awesome, what a spectacular it was, with glowing brake rotors everywhere and lots of hard-fought racing. It was a good race for us, we got out to a early lead and tried to control it, I lost my water bottle 15 minutes in, so I was pretty parched at the end, but we got home and got the chocolates, so I was pretty happy with that. I want to say a big thank you to Hunter Pacific Celling Fans, Shockwave Signs and State One Fire Protection and Security; and a special shout out to the Kids with Kids with Cancer Foundation – we had a few families with kids come through the pit this weekend and it was great to show them around the car and give them a fun family day out.”
Class A2 round winner: #38 KCK Lubricants/Vic’s Timbers BMW M3: Ben Gersekowski
“Our weekend started off great, the car was great straight away for practice, it was just a bit unfortunate that we were on old tyres. In practice two I was just getting familiarised with the track again and learning the setup for the car. We had a pretty good qualifying in the night time, the car was on rails for qualifying really. I ended up doing the quickest lap I have ever done around QR in qualifying, so I was really stoked with that, Denyer was just too good for pole, so we qualified P2 in class. We finished in the same position in race one, stayed out of trouble and came back in one piece. In race two it was a really great race for us, we were pretty lucky with the safety car to be able to top up with fuel then, and I was on a mission to drive every lap like a qualifying lap, and it paid off for us in the end. I saw Denyer in the Mustang slowing a bit towards the end, so I thought here is my chance to overtake, it is unfortunate that he had an issue, so we were able to overtake and finish first in class, and I was quite surprised to find we had finished third overall for the race too! We were over the moon with that for our 2008 car against all these new cars out there, so we were pretty chuffed. In race three I wanted to see how fast I could go, I had a good start and held position for most of the race but unfortunately later I found I had a five second penalty for jumping the start marginally, but I was able to build up enough of a gap to the second class A2 car to still finish in the lead for class. Overall, I am really happy, I couldn’t have asked for a much better weekend, the car was faultless. I just have to thank KCK Lubricants for the reliability and the setup of the car, Matt Gilmour, and Vic’s Timber for their support.”
Class C round winner: #36 Grand Prix Mazda-backed Mazda 3MPS: Jake Camilleri
“I had a great weekend. It was good to have the little Mazda back out again and good to be at our home track. Thank you to my team for all of their effort, they always put in a great effort, and we had another solid day. Thank you also to Graham Murray, my race mechanic and engineer, he does an awesome job, and the car was faultless as always. The night race was awesome, I love those long-distance races, I just love enduros. We were consistent and had an awesome time and it was a really good race and weekend.”
Class D round winner: #39 LME Care/Gtechniq Ford Fiesta: Amar Sharmar and Daniel Natoli
“It was an interesting weekend for us. We had to chase the car a lot, we had some issues in the gearbox in race one, so we didn’t know if we were going to make the enduro or not, but we all put our heads together and got a new gearbox and changed it and managed to finish it in time. Then we had boost problems in the enduro, so we had no boost, so we were just circulating and trying to finish. We made some changes overnight and finished the race this morning with no issues, so that was a good result for a hard weekend. Overall though we were happy to finish and have the first weekend with the new car. Thanks to the team and obviously to LME Care and Gtechniq for their support. They managed to get us through, and without their support we couldn’t make it to the track.”
Class E round winner: #70 Suzuki Swift: Allan Jarvis
“It was a good weekend – we had fun and that is the main part. We improved our lap times over the weekend, but it wasn’t the fastest I had been here before, so I am a little disappointed about that, but we did improve over the weekend and my fastest time came in the last race. The Fight in the Night was excellent and a lot of fun, there was a lot of mirror watching and trying to stay out of the way and not baulk anyone and ruin their race, I was just trying to keep my nose clean and have fun. Thank you to my mum and dad and Terry my crew chief and my family for coming out – this was the first time I have had the family at a race event, so that was great.”