SOME CATEGORIES completed their championships at Queensland Raceway on October 10, but the highlight of the meeting was the Ultimate Diesel Tuning300 for Production Touring Cars.
By BlendLine Media Team
Class X BMWs finished first and second in an entertaining QR300, with Tristan and Dalton Ellery teamed up to take the under-lights, 96-lap, 300-kilometre event. They took their M3 F82 to victory by over a lap from Karl Begg and David Russell in their M4 F82. Third place just 10.6s behind were Coleby Cowhan and Lindsay Kearns sharing their Class A2 Ford Mustang.
The Ellery brothers were second early, and through the course of mandatory pitstops, hovered mostly in the top six. They didn’t take the lead until lap 73 which they then held to the chequered flag.
Begg and Russell led the first nine laps at which time, yielded the front running to the Invitation Class pairing of Dylan Cothill and Hudson Sinclair in their Invitation Class Nissan Skyline R35 GTR.
The BMW pair regained the lead briefly on lap 18 before another stint at the front from lap 24. The Nissan encountered refuelling problems at the pits stops which would ultimately place them 17th.
For 23 laps from lap 50, Begg and Russell led before their last stop, dropped them a lap and put them third on the road behind the Mustang, from which they were able to salvage second.
Also, one lap behind the winners were Brad Carr and Ash Jarvis in their Class A2 BMW M3 V8. Two laps further behind were Gerry Murphy and Stephen Robinson in fifth and they also took out Class B2 in their Holden Commodore SSV.
Class A1 went to John Harris and Aaron Seton in a Mitsubishi Evo X RS with 92 laps completed, one more than class rivals Wade Scott and Ben Gersekowski in the earlier model Evo 8.
Remarkably two Class D Toyota 86s made it into the top ten with Andrew Wilton and Nash Morris eighth and Mitchell Maddren and Luke Cornwell tenth. In between were Tony and Kent Quinn who were denied a podium with a late puncture whilst second outright.
Class C was won by Nick and Ben McLeod in a Holden Astra Turbo, Class I went to Daniel Ross and Murray Coote in a Toyota Altezza. Adam Talbert went solo in his Mazda 6 to win Class E.
Among the non-finishers were the Tony Alford/Kyle Alford Ford Mustang following contact with the Cowhans/Kearns Ford. The Anthony Gilbertson/Kyle Gurton BMW M3 V8 pulled up at the top front straight late in the race. The Steve Hay/Bayley Hall Mazda 3 went off at turn six midway through and caused the second clampdown.
The first clampdown occurred 20 laps earlier when the Jason Simes/Anthony Levitt Mercedes-AMG C63 went off at turn two. Before that the Michael James/Liam McAdam HSV Clubsport retired with overheating, and the Beric Lynton M3 F80 never really got into it due to ongoing computer and electrical dramas.
The speed was with Tony Saint and his V8-powered Mazda RX7, however the overall victory in QR Sports & Sedans went to Aaron Hodges with the debut of his BMW E36.
Saint qualified fastest and won races one and two, failed to finish race three and was third in the last. Hodges was second in first two before going onto victory in the remaining races.
Meanwhile it was a close contest in race one between Holden Commodore drivers Brian Smallwood and Tim Barwick, split by half a second in the former’s favour. Smallwood retired from race and left Barwick third. The latter was finished for the weekend with a fried plug lead. That left Jordan Walker to pick up a couple of second places.
PRODUCTION SPORTS CARS:
At the helm of a Lamborghini Gallardo, Nick Cresswell was a comfortable winner in the four Production Sports Cars races. Porsches followed in his wake with Steven McFadden a clear second in the first. There was little between Joe Barbagallo and Lachlan Harburg as they battled ahead of Graham Lusty and his Mosler.
Harburg was second ahead of Barbagallo in the next two outings. McFadden was well down the order in race two and Lusty went out early. The Mosler driver came back to finish fourth in race three and second in a very depleted race four, ahead of Shane Plohl (Eunos Roadster) in the last.
AUSTRALIAN TRANS AM:
At the final round of the Australian Trans-Am Series Geoff Fane was unbeaten over four races in his Chev Camaro. Pontiac Firebird driver John English did enough to wrap up the title ahead of Anthony Tenkate and his Ford Mustang. Meanwhile Ron Prefontaine (Mustang) took out the five-litre class.
Justin Anthony (Camaro) finished behind the leading title protagonists and ahead of Ian Palmer (Firebird) in race one. Palmer was second next time out, ahead of Tenkate and English before the latter rebounded for second in race three. Palmer placed third ahead of Tenkate and beat both in the last.
QUEENSLAND TOURING CARS:
In the Queensland Touring Car Championship fifth round, Dean McMahon was pipped in qualifying for pole position but came back for two very tight race wins.
Saxon Moyes in his BMW E36 started race one off pole position. However, Mahon gained the upper hand in his Holden Monaro on the opening lap. He held off Robert Bellinger until the BMW E46 was passed by Moyes with a couple of laps to go. Bellinger was later handed a 30s penalty which left points leader Matt Haak third in his Holden Commodore from Gary Lange aboard a BMW E46.
As McMahon held out Moyes in race two, Bellinger worked his way through from ninth to third. He crossed the line ahead of Lange, Leo Meiera in the leading Commodore and fellow Holden runners Haak, Les Hanifin, Cameron Haak and Simon Winters. Bellinger continued his charge to take race three from Steven Harris driving a Nissan Bluebird, the Haaks and Shannon Cane in his Commodore. McMahon and Moyes were non-starters.