By BLENDLINE MEDIA TEAM
The Historic Sports & Racing Car Association’s Summer Festival at Sydney Motorsport Park on November 28-29 was hot, with the air temperature hitting the wrong side of 40 degrees C on both days.
Crews, drivers, and cars suffered accordingly but none more so than the officials at the flag points. Several were affected to the point that they could not come back Sunday and wisely, the organisers decided to change from the Gardner circuit to the shorter Druitt layout and rejig the program.
The Dawson Daimler Trophy for Groups L, M, O and Invited P, L Sports was a feature event, and it was won by Les Wright in his Buick V8-powered Brabham BT21/25.
The battle for second was on from the start and eventually Laurie Bennett (Elfin 600B) edged out Wayne Seabrook (Renmax BN3) by eleven hundredths of a second. Wayne Wilson (Brabham BT35) was fourth in front of Herbert Neal (Neal Ford) and John Ashwell (BT21-C).
Wright opened his account with a win in race one, ahead Bennett and Seabrook who were virtually tied together. Both were early casualties in race two where Wilson was a clear second over Noel Bryen (Renmax) and Norm Falkiner (Elfin Mono). By the final race, most had packed up and Wilson won ahead of Neal and Ashwell.
The Group S Production Sports endurance was scheduled for 22 laps and while it was still destined to go that many, it would be on the shorter circuit. A compulsory pitstop was mandatory and for single drivers, they had to remain stationary for 40 seconds. Those with two drivers were not time restricted and could effectively undertake a faster stop.
Wayne Seabrook (Porsche 911 Carrera) drove alone and dominated. He built up a sufficient lead that he did not lose relative position when he stopped. Terry Lawlor and Brad Tilley shared the former’s Shelby GT350 and finished a comfortable second.
Porsche drivers Mikki Piirlaid and Doug Barbour were never far apart as they vied for third. Piirlaid led early, Barbour went ahead, but Piirlaid took third in the end. Brothers Simon and Damien Meyer in their MG Midgets duked out for fifth. Simon led narrowly when Damien pitted – too early it appeared as he had to come back later. Simon was all set for fourth until the alternator failed and despite the second stop, Damien salvaged fourth.
The Porsche drivers kicked off the weekend with a one-two-three in race one, Seabrook winning from Piirlaid and Barbour. Lawlor stalled off the line and pitted with a gear selector breakage after he got started. Simon Meyer was fourth in front of Damien Meyer. Of those left for the last, it was Barbour ahead of Simon and Damien Meyers.
In the three Group N Historic Touring Car races he contested, Brad Tilley was never headed in his Nc Ford Mustang. In the first he headed home son Jamie in his Nb Mustang. Adam Walton also running out or the Tilley stable, was a close third in his Nc Mustang.
In fourth spot was Ben Wilkinson in his Mustang, but it finished with a broken rear spring and the weekend was over. Fifth placed John Burke picked up a couple fourths afterwards in his Valiant Charger. The under three litre race went to Ford Capri driver Steve Land over David Noakes in his Ford Escort, with Andrew Bergan next in his Morris Cooper S. Only four cars were around for the last which was won by Greg Luca at the wheel of his Holden Torana XU-1.
Two Van Diemen drivers battled for top honours in Group F Formula Fords. Tom Tweedie in his RF86 won the first two and young circuit racing rookie William Lowing at the helm of the later model RF88 won the other pair.
Along with several others, Tweedie did not contest the last, as he had already secured the trophy honours. Lowing won it from Elwyn driver Bruce Connolly who was a close third in race three after misfortunes in the first two outings. Kieran McLaughlin was third in the first race in his RF89 but did not contest the later race while Travis Clark (RF86) was third in race two.
Overall, in Group V Formula Vees it was Don Greiveson who came out on top in his Spectre, although he only managed two wins from the four races. Stag driver Tony Paynter set the pace in race one where he greeted the chequered flag first.
But he had a five-second penalty to overcome and looked to have it covered until the final lap. Stephen Normoyle in his Spectre edged out David Clark in his Avanti for second which became first and second by a very narrow margin.
Paynter made no such mistake for a race two victory as Normoyle was second ahead of Greiveson and Clark. Normoyle was out for the remainder and Paynter looked set for a repeat in race three but retired on the last lap. Greiveson won from Clark and Norm Johnstone in another Spectre and then Greiveson did it again in race four over Clark with David Harley in his Spectre third.
The Nola Chev with Dan Nolan at the helm was the pacesetter in Groups Q & R Sports & Racing despite losing out late in race one to Ian Buddery and his former Indy Car March 86C. Malcolm Oastler in his F2 Kaditcha, got the better of Aaron McClintock in his F2 Richards after a race-long duel for third.
Nolan bounced back to take out races two and three. With Buddery a non-starter McClintock had the advantage in race two as Oastler struggled with a fuel drama. In the third race Buddery and McClintock were vying for second until they tangled.
As a result, Oastler picked up second ahead of David Kent in his Ralt RT4 and Andrew Carrig driving a Mallock Mk27SG. Kent went on to win a depleted race four over Carrig and the Elfin 792 driven by Malcolm Boyd.