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Mar 29, 2015

BIG RESULTS HIGHLIGHT COMPETITVE SHANNONS NATIONALS SEASON OPENER

A SUCCESSFUL opening round of the 2015 Shannons Australian Motor Racing Nationals has been run and won in perfect conditions at Sandown Raceway in Melbourne’s suburbs.

Eight national categories have kicked off their respective campaigns with the promise of plenty of highly competitive racing to come across the remainder of the season.

The next round of the Shannons Nationals will be held at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit on May 22-24 and will feature the Australian GT 101, Porsche Carrera Cup, Formula 3, Formula Ford and the Great Southern 4 Hour AMChamp Enduro.

KEY WINNERS:

AMChamp Sandown 3 Hour Classic: Rob / Shane Marshall (Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X)
Kerrick Sports Sedan Series
: Tony Ricciardello (Alfa Romeo GTV-Chev)
Australian Formula Ford Series: Jake Spencer (Mygale SJ12)
Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship: Ricky Capo (Dallara F311 – Mugen Honda)
Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Pirelli: Ryan Simpson (Porsche 997)
Dial Before You Dig Super Six Touring Cars: Travis Lindorff (Holden Commodore VX)
Kumho V8 Touring Cars: Jack Perkins (Holden Commodore VZ)
Radical Australia Cup: Greg Smith / Karl Reindler (Radical SR8)

AMCHAMP AUSTRALIAN 3 HOUR


FATHER AND SON duo Rob and Shane Marshall have successfully defended their AMChamp Sandown 3 hour Classic title today at Sandown, outplaying and outlasting their rivals to score a comfortable one-lap victory.

The pair were pressured for much of the race by the BMW 1M of Beric Lynton and Craig Baird, though a late-race stop from Baird to clear debris from the radiator grille of the second-placed car dropped them a lap behind the winners in the end result.

Tony Alford and Peter Leemhuis finished third in the Donut King BMW 1M – a car lucky to make the start of the race after enduring significant repairs following a hefty practice crash on Friday.

Michael Sherrin and David Ayres finished fourth in their BMW and won Class B, while Jake Camilleri and Scott Nicholas took Class C by one lap over the brand-new Ford Falcon FG-X driven by George Karadimas and Geoff Russell.

Class D was won by the Grant Phillips / Andrew Turpie Toyota 86.

The race results are currently provisional pending CAMS enquiries post-race.

KERRICK SPORTS SEDAN SERIES


TONY RICCIADELLO won a climactic opening round of the Kerrick Sports Sedan Series after yet another remarkable wheel-to-wheel fight with his long-time rival Darren Hossack.

The pair traded places on two occasions in the final race of the weekend – the Des Wall Trophy Race that is a must-win for competitors.

After wrestling the lead away from Ricciardello, Hossack was re-passed a lap later and then dropped out of the race with a tyre issue on his Audi-Chev.

Steven Tamasi finished second in the final race, in front of Tom Randle’s SAAB.

Earlier in the day, Ricciardello led home Hossack and Randle in the second of three races.

The Kerrick Sports Sedans will next race with the V8 Supercars round at Winton Raceway in mid-May this year, with a bumper field expected for the return of top-level Sports Sedans on the V8 program.

KUMHO V8 TOURING CARS


EGGLESTON Motorsport’s Jack Perkins has completed a perfect weekend by clean sweeping the opening round of the Kumho Tyre Australian V8 Touring Car Series at Sandown in Melbourne.

The news was even better for his team given rookie teammate Liam McAdam finished runner-up for the weekend to give the team a 1-2 finish for the weekend.

A red flag stopped today’s first race (Race 2 for the round) on the last lap after Queensland privateer Lyle Kearns crashed at Dandenong Road Corner.

The results were backdated one lap with Perkins declared victor from returning former series runner-up Jim Pollicina and Perkins’ Eggleston Motorsport teammate Liam McAdam.

A longer 18-lap race completed the weekend and again the Safety Car made an appearance after Sydney racer Steve Briffa was stranded in the sand at Dandenong Road Corner.

Perkins was unchallenged when racing resumed and led home McAdam, former series champ Chris Smerdon, Pollicina and Matt Palmer.

The Kumho V8 Touring Cars’ next round will be with the Shannons Nationals at Winton Motor Raceway, between June 12-14.

FORMULA 3 AUSTRALIAN DRIVERS CHAMPIONSHIP


LOCAL HOPE Ricky Capo won his maiden Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship round this weekend at Sandown after rival Jon Collins struck dramas in the feature race of the round.

Collins was leading the 18-lap feature however struck issues on lap six when he momentarily slowed coming out of the Dandenong Road corner, allowing Capo to pounce and grab a race lead he’d never lose.

After stalling on the grid, Roland Legge charged through the field to finish second outright while Collins did the same after his disappointment – grabing third place with three laps remaining to at least get on the podium in the opening round of the championship.

Like Spalding won the National Class while Andrew Roberts sealed the Kumho Cup – both drivers on debut this weekend.

The Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit will host the next round of the Gold Star in late May this year.

AUSTRALIAN FORMULA FORD SERIES


THREE different winners from three races have highlighted an ultra-competitive opening round of the Australian Formula Ford series, won by Jake Spencer despite the Spectrum driver not winning a race.

Christian Morina won race two this morning, edging out Spencer, Race one winner Hardeman, Cameron Hill and Mitch Martin in a classic slipstreaming battle down Sandown’s long straights.

Cameron Hill then won the third race in style, becoming the first privateer team to win a national Formula Ford race in more than a decade.

Jake Spencer finished second and Mitch Martin third, with Spencer’s consistency across the three races delivering him the overall round victory and the championship lead in the process.

Race one winner Hamish Hardeman was running in the leading group in the final race before a wild spin at the top of the famous Sandown ‘rise’ in the back straight saw him drop down the order.

The Australian Formula Ford series returns at Phillip Island on May 22-24.

DIAL BEFORE YOU DIG SUPER SIX TOURING CARS

TRAVIS LINDORFF won the opening Dial Before you Dig Australian Super Six Touring Car Series round of the year after seeing off defending champion Gavin Ross in the final race of the weekend.

The pair of Holden Commodore drivers ran nose-to-tail all race with Lindorff grabbing the advantage by less than a second after a tense race.

Harley Phelan completed the top three, edging out Garry Hills and Chris Lillis.

The Super Sixes return to the Shannons Nationals at Winton Motor Raceway this June with their annual ‘enduro’ round.

PORSCHE GT3 CUP CHALLENGE PRESENTED BY PIRELLI


Newcomer Ryan Simpson has had immediate impact in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia presented by Pirelli series, taking the outright and Professional Class round win at the opening Sandown round while Geoff Emery and Nick Cresswell claimed the Elite Class and Class B round victories, respectively.

Simpson finished fourth in race two this morning having dropped as low as 12th after running wide at turn one in the first corner. He then stormed to the lead in race three to seal the round win.

“It’s a great start to the season. I’ve learnt a lot so I’ll take that knowledge and go to Winton understanding what I have under me now, and also knowing what these guys race like having not competed with many of them before. It was a good start to the championship,” said Simpson, who was joined on the Professional Class podium by second placed McCorkindale and fellow newcomer O’Keeffe.

The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia presented by Pirelli series now heads to Winton Motor Raceway for round two on June 12-14, which will also see the start of the Jim Richards Endurance Trophy.