THE title of Australia's fastest ute driver will be decided when the Poolrite V8 BRute Muster stages a hotly-contested final round this weekend at Sandown International Motor Raceway, in Melbourne. A 16-car field of the latest model Ford Falcon...
THE title of Australia's fastest ute driver will be decided when the Poolrite V8 BRute Muster stages a hotly-contested final round this weekend at Sandown International Motor Raceway, in Melbourne.
A 16-car field of the latest model Ford Falcon XR8 and Holden Commodore SS utes will compete in two races tomorrow and a third on Sunday, after practice and qualifying sessions today.
With 181 points available to any driver who can achieve a clean sweep of fastest qualifier and winner of the three six-lap sprints, the inaugural championship still is mathematically within reach of five drivers and is likely to go down to the wire in the last event on Sunday.
Another driver, Mick 'The Don' Donaher, already has achieved that clean sweep in his ute racing debut in round four at Sandown in September.
While Donaher is not among the contenders, his continuing strong form - he has won three races since then - should ensure his Falcon is one of the fastest on the track.
That may be a problem for number one rival Damien 'Ice' White. After a clash between them that cost White a win at Sandown last time, he has declared his main goal is to beat Donaher any time they compete.
But this weekend White also has a clear shot at the series lead of Holden racer Rod 'Redline' Wilson.
"In terms of race wins, Donaher obviously has the form at Sandown and will be a threat to both Damien and me," Wilson said.
"It will be doing me a favour if the fued with Damien keeps them both busy! My lead is only 31 points, but at least I'm ahead. If I stay out of trouble and get some good points I'm in good shape for the title."
But Donaher is not the only worry. The extremely close racing of the BRutes formula since it was launched in April has produced eight different winners and three - Gary 'Growler' Young (Commodore), Gary 'The Boss' MacDonald (Commodore) and Ian 'Macca' McAlister (Falcon) are in contention with Wilson and White for the championship.
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS (after Rd 5): 643 Rod 'Redline' Wilson, 612 Damien 'Ice' White, 582 eq. Gary 'Growler' Young/Gary 'The Boss' MacDonald, 488 Ian 'Macca' McAlister, 444 Grant 'Mag Dog' Denyer.
LAST TIME AT SANDOWN (Rd 4): Pole - M. Donaher (Falcon) 1 min. 28.80 sec. Race 1 - M. Donaher. Race 2 - M. Donaher. Race 3 - M.Donaher. Lap record - M. Donaher, 1:29.24.
TIMETABLE: Friday - 8.30 Practice (25 min.), 1.40 Qualifying (30 min.). Saturday - 1.15 Race 1 (6 laps), 3.45 Race 2 (6 laps). Sunday - 12.35 Race 3 (6 laps).