ATCC: Symmons Plains report

Bowe and Brock blitz Symmons LAUNCESTON, TAS Sun, Feb 26, 1995: It was a day for heros at Symmons Plains in Northern Tasmania as local driver John Bowe and Australian cultural icon and aging juvenile lead Peter Brock shared the spoils at round...

Bowe and Brock blitz Symmons

LAUNCESTON, TAS Sun, Feb 26, 1995: It was a day for heros at Symmons Plains in Northern Tasmania as local driver John Bowe and Australian cultural icon and aging juvenile lead Peter Brock shared the spoils at round 2 of the Shell Australian Touring Car Championships.

Bowe won the day with a great victory from pole in heat one of the twin 38 lappers at the fast and demanding Symmons circuit from Holden factory driver Thomas Mezera and fellow Falcon driver Glen Seton in third.

Defending champion Mark Skaife returned to the series after his horrendous pre season crash at Eastern Creek and made a brilliant start from second on the grid to lead the field away but he soon dropped back through the pack. Sandown winner Larry Perkins had a great dice with Bowe's team leader Dick Johnson before the two had a coming together that put both out of the race.

Meanwhile starting from further back in the pack Peter Brock, celebrated his 50th birthday with a strong drive through the field to fourth giving his vast legion of fans a tantalising preview of things to come. Sydney's David Attard took the Group 2 win for privateers.

HEAT 2

With his win in the first heat Bowe once again looked set to run away with victory in heat 2, however back in 4th grid position the birthday boy Brock had other ideas.

With his Dunlops going off and a determined Brock in pursuit Bowe opened up what looked like a race winning gap, but using all of his 3 decades of experience Brock slowly but surely reeled the yellow Falcon in and much to the delight of Holden fans moved passed the Tasmanian to record a popular win from Bowe and Brock's Holden team mate Mezera in third. David Attard having a great debut year in the class again took the Group 2 honours.

Overall however it was Bowe's day taking the outright win and ending a hoodoo on his home state track from Brock and Mezera.

The win gives the Tasmanian the lead in the series from Brock, first round winner Perkins and the consistent Wayne Gardner in fourth.

The racing at Symmons was excellent with less than a second covering the first ten cars in qualifying, and although it appears that Bowe and the Fords have the edge it would seem that the series regulators have got it pretty right this year first time around.

In the tyre war Dunlop seem to have all the early pace although Brocks win was good news for Bridgestone. The Yokohama shod teams do seem to be a little of the pace in spite of Skaife's qualifying effort. On the down side for Dunlop the earthquake in Kobe has left their teams short of rubber which may prove a problem later in the series.

BTW the crowd at Symmons was a record for a sporting event in Tasmania. The Shell Australian Touring Car Championships now move to Mount Panorama Bathurst for the first sprint race at the venue in over 20 years.

RESULTS HEAT 1

DRIVER                  TEAM                                CAR
John Bowe               Dick Johnson                    Racing        Ford Falcon
Thomas Mezera                  Mobil Holden Racing Team        Holden Commodore
Glen Seton                     Peter Jackson Racing                Ford Falcon
Peter Brock                    Mobil Holden Racing Team        Holden Commodore
Alan Jones                     Peter Jackson Racing            Ford Falcon
Neil Crompton                  Coca-Cola/Gardner Racing        Holden Commodore

HEAT 2

DRIVER                         TEAM                                CAR
Peter Brock             Mobil Holden Racing Team        Holden Commodore
John Bowe                Dick Johnson Racing                Ford Falcon
Thomas Mezera                  Mobil Holden Racing Team        Holden Commodore
Neil Crompton                  Coca-Cola/Gardner Racing        Holden Commodore
Larry Perkins                  Castrol/Perkins Racing                Holden Commodore
Wayne Gardner                  Coca-Cola/Gardner Racing        Holden Commodore

POINTS after 2 rounds

Bowe        69
Brock        52
Perkins        51
Gardner        44

NEXT ROUND Mount Panorama Bathurst NSW March 12. -- Brett Ramsey On-Line Media Consultant. Check out http://www.deakin.edu.au/arts/VPMA/Media3.html

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Series General
Drivers Alan Jones , Neil Crompton , Wayne Gardner , Mark Skaife , John Bowe , Thomas Mezera , Larry Perkins , Peter Brock , Dick Johnson
Teams Holden Racing Team