Nov 13, 2013
KUMHO SERIES CHAMPION TO BE CROWNED THIS WEEKEND AT SANDOWN
Formula Ford Champion, V8 Ute race winner and Saloon Car Champion join field for finale as young Gold Coaster closes in on title
GOLD Coast-based driver Shae Davies is hot favourite to claim the 2013 Kumho Tyres Australian V8 Touring Car Series this weekend with the sixth and final round to be hosted at Sandown in Melbourne this Saturday and Sunday.
The Fernandez Motorsport driver, who finished sixth in this year’s Porsche Carrera Cup, holds a 96-point lead over nearest rival Terry Wyhoon with 143 points available this weekend.
The 23-year-old drives an ex-Ford Performance Racing Falcon in the series for ex-V8 Supercars and could give the Jose Fernandez-run team its second consecutive title in the category.
Davies has won three races this season and finished on the podium in all five rounds, though an overall round victory has so far eluded him.
“As much as I would really like to win a round and tick that box, winning the series and scoring enough points this weekend is my real focus,” says Davies.
“The quality of the field has stepped up for the final round with a few drivers coming from outside the series to race in some very good equipment.
“But that doesn’t faze me. You have to race against whoever turns up but I’m mindful I don’t need to do anything too silly this weekend.
“Winning this series was our goal at the start of the year and we’re nearly there but we can’t afford to get ahead of ourselves.”
A range of drivers will join the grid for the final round at Sandown, including reigning Australian Formula Ford Champion Jack Le Brocq.
Le Brocq, 21, will drive one of MW Motorsport’s ex-FPR Falcons alongside team owner Matthew White in his V8 race debut. Earlier this season he won two rounds of the Australian GT Championship in Erebus Motorsport’s Mercedes-Benz AMG SLS GT3.
V8 Ute race winner Craig Dontas will also join the Kumho Series this weekend. The Shannons Supercar Showdown contestant will drive the ex-Jason Richards Team Dynamik Commodore run by THR Developments.
Two-time and reigning Saloon Car Champion Simon Tabinor is another to make his Kumho Series debut. He will drive an ex-Brad Jones Racing Falcon BF run earlier this season by Dan Day.
Series rookie Matt Chahda is stepping up from his 14-year old AU Falcon for the final round – he will drive the ex-Jason Bright Falcon BF that won the opening round of the season at Sydney Motorsport Park in the hands of Justin Garioch.
Image Racing will again run two cars with Dean Neville making his first Kumho Series start since 2010 in Terry Wyhoon’s second, ex-Russell Ingall Falcon BA.
Sonic Motor Racing pilot Ryan Simpson could set a range of records this weekend. He has won the last seven races straight – a new series record – and could tie the record for most consecutive round wins (three) should he claim victory at Sandown.
Pole position at Sandown for Simpson would also give him the record (four) for most pole positions in a single season in the Kumho Series.
The Sydney-based driver missed the opening two rounds of the season at Sydney Motorsport Park and Mallala but has gone on a winning spree since debuting at Winton in his ex-Craig Lowndes, Triple Eight-built Falcon BF.
He sits fourth in the series pointscore and is only 37 points behind second-placed Wyhoon.
The 19-strong Kumho Series field will hit the circuit at Sandown on Friday for private practice before official practice begins on Saturday morning.
Coverage of the final two races of the weekend will be live streamed on Sunday at
www.thenationals.com.au with television coverage on SBS’ ‘Speedweek’ on Sunday December 1 and at a later date on SPEED on Foxtel.
Championship Points Entering Round 6:
1. Shae Davies, 527 pts
2. Terry Wyhoon, 431 pts
3. Tony Evangelou, 400 pts
4. Ryan Simpson, 394 pts
5. Matt Hansen, 366 pts
6. Steve Briffa, 296 pts
7. Nathan Assaillit, 279 pts
8. Morgan Haber, 231 pts
9. Chris Smerdon, 171 pts
10. Dan Day, 168 pts
Weekend Race Schedule:
Saturday November 16
9.40am – Practice 12.50pm – Qualifying 2.50pm – Race 1 (10 laps)
Sunday November 17
9.40am – Race 2 (10 laps) 11.55am – Race 3 (15 laps)