Aug 9, 2015
BACK TO BACK WINNERS THE BIG STORY AT QUEENSLAND RACEWAY
BACK-TO-BACK Touring Car round victories for young stars Alex Rullo and Ben Grice have heighted a massive fifth round of the Shannons Australian Motor Racing Nationals this weekend at Queensland Raceway, near Ipswich.
15-year-old Alex Rullo won his second Kumho V8 Touring Car round of the year while Grice stormed to another clean-sweep of a Super Six Touring car round to lodge his championship credentials.
Jack Perkins was another to sweep all three races this weekend, dominating in his maiden Kerrick Sports Sedan triumph, while Cameron Hill won his third successive Formula Ford round of the season – with just one round remaining for the open wheelers.
Victories by Jon Collins (Formula 3), Ryan Simpson (Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge), Beric Lynton (AMChamp) and Josh Townsend (Sports Racer) completed a massive day of racing.
A full category-by-category review of all the racing is included below.
The Shannons Nationals continue their bumper eight-round season at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit this September 18-20.
PORSCHE GT3 CUP CHALLENGE PRESENTED BY PIRELLI
RYAN SIMPSON took the broom to the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Pirelli field this weekend, sweeping the three race weekend thanks to a string of two victories on Sunday – backing up his commanding win in the 40-lap Sunday night race.
The Sydney driver was in his usual imperious form at Sydney Motorsport Park, breaking the lap record comfortably in race two – setting the new benchmark at 1m10.9903s.
Simpson won the professional class with youngsters Dylan O’Keefe second and James Abela third.
Hamish Hardeman’s Porsche debut was one of the talking points of the weekend – the Formula Ford graduate converting sixth in the Jim Richards enduro to fifth and ninth places in Sunday’s two races, respectively.
Geoff Emery edged out Tim Miles and podium debutant Sam Shahin for the honours in the Porsche’s elite class, while Jaxon Evans won the competitive class B fight over Aaron Seton and Jim Campbell.
BERIC LYNTON in the Alphera Financial Services BMW1M made it two wins from two days in round three of the AMChamps.
Lynton took the lead with 15 laps to go after a thrilling battle with the Sherrin brothers BMW - who had lead for the majority of the race up to that point.
The #18 Sherrin Rentals BMW ran strongly all day, taking the lead on the first lap before the Poll Performance/Mocomm HSV of Pollicina and Lillie overtook them on the second lap.
However, their lead would be short-lived, with a punctured left front tyre just laps later seeing them pit from the lead, handing it back to the Sherrin brothers entry who would go on to lead for the majority of the race from that point.
The potential for an outright victory would slip from the grasp of the Queensland brothers however, when during an epic dice for the lead with Lynton with 15 laps to go saw Grant Sherrin have an off-track excursion on turn 3 – allowing Lynton through for the lead, where he stayed.
Power steering issues sidelined the Rick Bates ProDuct Mitsubishi, while Bob Pearson retired later in the race with smoke billowing from his identical car.
KERRICK SPORTS SEDAN SERIES
JACK PERKINS’ second round in the Kerrick Sports Sedan series has resulted in a dominant three-race sweep of the series’ third round of 2015.
The Audi driver, filling in for injured regular pilot Darren Hossack, not only took pole and every race victory this weekend, but set a new Sports Sedan lap record for the venue in the process.
Tony Ricciardello finished second in races one and two however dropped down the order in race three after an exhaust issue slowed his progress – though he cruised to the line a small fire did hamper his progress.
After their furious battle for the lead on Saturday evening, Ricciardello seemed to have limited answer to the Audi’s pace on Sunday, falling ten seconds behind in race two and trailing the Audi again in race three before his dramas struck.
Steven Tamasi finished third in both Sunday races and Tom Randle fourth in the Kerrick SAAB.
Shane Bradford won the battle of the TransAm class whilst Keith Kassulke was the leader of the three-car MARC Cars Australia in-race battle.
FORMULA 3 AUSTRALIAN DRIVERS CHAMPIONSHIP
JON COLLINS has extended his lead in the Australian Formula 3 Championship following a commanding feature race victory at Queensland Raceway on Sunday.
Collins assumed an early lead in the Formula 3’s 18-lap feature race whilst behind the Gilmour Racing driver some wild racing ensured on the opening lap – Ricky Capo, Roland Legge and Chris Gilmour going three wide into turn three as they battled for second place.
Legge ran wide at the turn, spearing off into the gravel and down to the back of the field whilst Capo edged Gilmour for second.
Collins sprinted away in front to win the race from Capo and a recovering Legge, who set a series of fastest laps on his charge through the field to the podium.
Luke Spalding battled Roman Krumins for victory in the Formula 3 National class, the pair trading the lead on several occasions before the local driver was able to assume his position at the top of the class – and fifth outright.
The bestjet.com Gilmour Racing Dallara driver also clinched the National class title for this year thanks to his string of strong performances this season.
The Australian Formula 3 Championship returns to the Shannons Nationals at Phillip Island this September.
KUMHO V8 TOURING CARS SERIES
AFTER SURVIVING all kinds of drama to win his maiden Kumho V8 Touring Cars Series round at Winton in June, Alex Rullo had a much clearer pathway to victory in his second career round win at Queensland Raceway this weekend.
Rullo scored pole and a perfect three-race sweep at QR to charge his way up the championship standings with back-to-back round wins.
His cause was helped when nearest rival Liam McAdam was turned around into the gravel trap in a combative final race on Sunday afternoon.
McAdam had battled Rullo for the lead early in the race however the pair made contact at turn two – when McAdam was on the outside - with McAdam coming off second best.
A new lap record for the Eggleston Motorsport driver was small consolation for the disappointing end to his otherwise consistent weekend.
McAdam now leads Rullo by just five points at the series’ half way point, Jim Pollicina third overall and first in the privateer class.
Jim Pollicina finished third overall this weekend after a race three non-finish saw Steve Devjack’s strong run of podium finishes come to a halt. He finished fourth overall with Steve Briffa competing the top five.
AUSTRALIAN FORMULA FORD CHAMPIONSHIP
CAMERON HILL won the fifth round of the Australian Formula Ford Series and placed one hand on the championship trophy in the process thanks to two race wins today at Queensland Raceway.
Hill won race two with relative ease but had to spend 10 laps of continued onslaught from Luis Leeds and Will Brown in a breathless finale’ before he could seal his third straight round victory.
Hill won the round by one point and has now won eight of the last nine races in the open-wheel category.
Luis Leeds finished second, surviving a thrilling last-lap battle with Will Brown in the finale’ to hold on to second spot for the race and round in his DREAM Motorsport Mygale.
Hill, Leeds and Brown each set identical fastest lap times in the 10-lap finale’, showcasing the competitive nature of the series this season – despite Hill’s apparent domination.
Will Brown and Christian Morina tied on 25 points each for third overall, Brown getting the result on a countback thanks to his race three finish.
DIAL BEFORE YOU DIG SUPER SIX TOURING CAR SERIES
BEN GRICE has taken his streak of race wins to six in the Dial Before You Dig Australian Super Six Touring Car Series this weekend at Queensland Raceway.
Backing up from his dominant performance in Sydney last month, the Gold Coast-based second-generation driver stormed to three comfortable victories this weekend ahead of fellow Holden driver and defending champion, Gavin Ross.
Queensland Ford driver Ashley Jarvis finished third for the round thanks to two thirds and a fourth – Gary Begs scoring a podium in race three after a storming drive.
Lindsay Kearns and Brent Edwards completed the top five.
SPORTS RACER SERIES
THE F1000 racers within the Australian Sports Racer Series have found great success, with Joshua Townsend clinching the first ever race and then round win for an F1000 while Adam Cranston took over the points lead.
Townsend would take not one but two race victories by the time the day was out, and was joined on the round podium by Michael Whiting (second) and Cranston (third) – with Whiting and Cranston proving that in racing, consistency really does count.
The Sports Racer weekend was highlighted by an incredible three-way fight for victory in race two that saw Townsend charge from third to first in one lap of racing, ultimately edging out Mark Laucke by 0.06s in one of the races of the year.
Laucke struck dramas in the third and final race, allowing Adam Cranston to jump to the points lead following three rounds.