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May 25, 2014

CHAMPIONS DEFEND GREAT SOUTHERN CROWN

GLENN SETON and Bob Pearson have successfully defended their 2013 Great Southern Four Hour victory, taking a repeat win in style at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit in today’s Australian Manufacturers Championship enduro.

The Pro Duct Racing Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X led for a bulk of the race and survived a late-race safety car to take their second Phillip Island victory ahead of the Beric Lynton / Tim Leahey Alphera Financial Services BMW 1M and the class B-winning Iain and Grant Sherrin Sherrin Rentals BMW 135i.

Seton forfeited a one-minute lead when the race’s only Safety Car – called after the Francois Jouy / Mark Eddy in the Network Clothing / Dentbuster Renault Megane lost a wheel  – was called, having just taken the wheel of the Pro Duct car following the final round of stops.

However, the former Australian Touring Car Champion was able to establish a margin once racing resumed with 36 minutes remaining, eventually holding out a fast-finishing Beric Lynton to take the outright and Class A victory by just 1.1 seconds.

Seton was held up by lapped traffic in the closing stages but never really looked like missing the victory in the closing stages. The ProDuct Mitsubishi completed 121 laps and a total of 539km en route to victory.

Lynton, sharing with co-driver Tim Leahey, passed Grant Sherrin following the late-race restart to secure the second-place outright finish, rebounding well from their dramas at the opening round that saw them classified only 11th outright.

The Sherrin brothers replicated their class B-winning efforts from twelve months ago, their main class rivals (from their Sherrin Rental teammates and the GWS Motorsport BMW 335i of John Bowe and Peter O’Donnell) striking mechanical dramas early on, leaving them to focus on the outright battle with the Mitsubishis and Lynton / Leahey BMW 1M and coming home in third outright.

Sandown 3-hour winners Rob and Shane Marshall finished third in Class A and fourth outright, while their class counterparts of the Eastern Creek Karts Mitsuibishi Evo X and the Donut King (McLeod / Alford) and Kintyre Holdings (Crimp / Cherry) BMW 1Ms each striking dramas and were removed from the running.

Colin Osborne and Rick Bates scored the Class C victory for Mazda, taking their 3MPS to a two-lap win over the sister Nick Lange / Brock Giblin entry in an emphatic Osborne Motorsport 1-2. Rick Shaw and Michael Sloss were third in class in the Sennheiser/Ric Shaw Racing BMW 130i ahead of both the Grand Prix Mazda 3 MPS of Jake Camilleri and Mark Griffith and the Australian Auto Wreckers Ford Falcon of George Karadimas, Lauren Gray and Matt Lehmann with the pair struggling with tyre issues throughout the race while the former also had a tune-up issue to contend with.

The Class D lead changed hands within the final 30 minutes of the race, the Conroy Motorsport Kandi Warehousing Honda Integra crew of Kevin Herben and co-driver Luke King taking the class win less than 30-seconds ahead of the Pedders Bendigo crew of Andrew Turpie and Grant Phillips, with Jake Williams / Geoff Rands Disc Brakes Australia Conroy Motorpsort Honda Integra coming third in class.

Daniel Stuttered and Mike Eady finished 12th outright in the sole invitational-class entered MINI Cooper S.

The next round of the Australian Manufacturers Championship will be held at Sydney Motorsport Park with the Shannons Nationals, between July 11-13.

QUOTEBOARD – CLASS WINNERS

Class A winners – Bob Pearson and Glenn Seton - #33 Castrol/Turbosmart/DBA/Bilstein Mitsubishi Evo 10

Glenn Seton

“I am very happy naturally, this is back to back for us because we won here last year. The car is pretty strong around here, I have to say thanks to Bob for the effort he has put in more than anything, he has put a lot into this and a lot into production cars over the year and he still supports it which is fantastic. Also to the guys in the crew and the team, there has been a little bit of personnel change in the team and it’s been great, I have really enjoyed my time with the team this year and being a part of this win today.”

Bob Pearson

“Of course (I am very happy), Glenn is a bit modest as we had issues in the car with it being very difficult to get into fifth gear and many times we couldn’t get into fifth gear, I think the engine has been damaged by it. So with all those circumstances and then the pace car taking our big lead off us, it was very good to get Glenn over the line.”

Class B winners - Grant Sherrin and Iain Sherrin - #18 Sherrin Rentals BMW135i

Grant Sherrin

“It was quite an interesting race, it was a good start and (John) Bowe and I had a good tussle at the start and then Holt got past us, I tried to stay on and had good pace, and then came in for a pit stop and had a penalty for lining the car up in the incorrect box (at the start) which kind of put us back a bit. We went out there and lapped around quite well, everything just rolled. We had a few issues in the end with electrical dramas making us have to reset the car a few times, once we reset it we would be on the pace for a few laps and then we would need to reset it again, so that is something we will have to sort for the next round.”

Iain Sherrin

“I think we did great, Grant did a great job first and last set. Trying to reset the car on the run is really hard to do, each time you do it you lose about four seconds each time, and I think if we didn’t have that we would have been up with Beric (Lynton) and (Glenn) Seton at the end there, but that ist the way it goes and to get third outright and first in class is just awesome.”

Class C winners - Colin Osborne and Rick Bates - #13 Osborne Motorsport Mazda 3 MPS

Colin Osborne

“This is an absolutely sensational result for all the guys in our team, they work their freckles off for us to be here. The car couldn’t be in safer hands when Rick is in it, we just put our heads down today and ended up with a really good result and I think we will have a celebration tonight!”

Rick Bates

“The team did a great job, we had a really faultless weekend, if it had rained we probably could have had an even slightly better result but there is also more risk in the rain. Thanks to Colin and the team for the drive - fifth outright and first in class is a pretty good result, I am very happy.”

Class D winners - Kevin Herben and Luke King - #14 Kandi Warehousing Honda Integra DC5

Kevin Herben

“The first stint was probably one of the toughest stints I have ever done, I had Geoff Rands in the other Conroy Honda pushing me along and I knew I needed to get a gap before the first pit stop. I managed to do that and was quite happy with that, Luke hopped in at the stop and did what he needed to do, conserving the tyre and running for economy. We were very fortunate that everything fell into place, the laps sort of rolled off and we got a lap on the number 21 and the Toyota car was behind us and we still had speed over them, so it was all fortunate.”

Luke King

“The race went perfectly to plan, I was focused on consistency and on saving the car while running at speed. I would like to thank Luke Ellery, my dad Brad and especially Kevin Herben of K-Racing for giving me the opportunity to do it, everything just went perfectly and I am really happy with the result. “

FOR FULL RESULTS, GO TO http://www.amchamp.com.au/results/