UTE: Surfers Paradise preview

A CLASSIC battle between V8 Ford and Holden drivers will decide the 2003 Poolrite V8 BRutes Series in the final round starting today at the Gold Coast Indy. Reigning series champion and Ford Falcon XR8 driver Warren Luff has a 53-point lead...

A CLASSIC battle between V8 Ford and Holden drivers will decide the 2003 Poolrite V8 BRutes Series in the final round starting today at the Gold Coast Indy.

Reigning series champion and Ford Falcon XR8 driver Warren Luff has a 53-point lead over Holden SS campaigner Gary MacDonald, but with a maximum of 93 points up for grabs either could take the title of Australia's fastest ute driver.

MacDonald knows he needs an almost perfect performance to win the series for his Gold Coast-based Kanga Loaders team.

"We need everything to go our way this weekend to win the championship. Anything can happen at Indy and it's always very close between the cars here," he said.

"I'd like to be on the front row for the final race and try to take home the win."

The Surfers Paradise street circuit is likely to see plenty of panel damage as the big field of BRutes tries to navigate the tight turns between the concrete barriers.

In 2002, many drivers were penalised for short-cutting the chicanes and jumping kerbs, but this year tyre barriers are being used to deter them.

"There should be less room for controversy now," MacDonald said.

Luff is keen to do well in what is likely to be his last V8 BRutes appearance before moving to a faster category in 2004.

"My main concern this weekend is to stay out of trouble and wrap up the

championship," he said.

"A win or a good result would be nice, but winning the championship is the result we're focussed on."

Speed Read

* Timetable: Thursday, 9.45 practice, 12.40 qualifying, 4.05 race 1 (6 laps); Friday, 5.45 race 2 (6 laps); Saturday, not on track; Sunday, 7.30 race 3 (6 laps).

* Championship points: 329 Luff, 276.5 MacDonald, 233.5 Brock, 211 Kovacs, 206 Baxter.

* Last year: Qualifying, Luff (2;19.15); race 1, Brock; race 2, Luff, race 3, Elsegood.

* Lap record: Denyer 2:19.05 (25/10/02).

-www.procar.com.au

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Series General
Drivers Warren Luff
Tags AUSUTE