UTE: Winton: Record number of entries announced

Donaher's back for Winton; Adam Brand finds a V8 BRute that's built for speed. A record 26 Commodore and Falcon V8 utes will contest next weekend's fourth round of the 2002 V8 BRute Series at Winton Motor Raceway in northern Victoria, with the...

Donaher's back for Winton; Adam Brand finds a V8 BRute that's built for speed.

A record 26 Commodore and Falcon V8 utes will contest next weekend's fourth round of the 2002 V8 BRute Series at Winton Motor Raceway in northern Victoria, with the field welcoming back a front-running former regular and a newcomer who already is a star.

After a two-round absence, V8 Supercar ace Michael Donaher will be back behind the wheel of a Ford Falcon and certain to raise a strong challenge to recent winners Allan Grice, Grant Denyer and series leader Warren Luff, also in Falcons.

But if country singing star Adam Brand has little expectation of victory in his first-ever V8 BRute race, he's sure to be the biggest hit with the hundreds of fans taking part in a trackside ute muster at the PROCAR Champ Series meeting.

Brand, whose enthusiasm for racing is revealed in his recent album "Built for Speed", will join a two-car, Ford-backed team with experienced Young, NSW, driver Ian McAlister.

The ute muster, featuring a display and competition for road utes, is a popular support feature of the V8 BRute Series and is expected to draw a particularly large attendance at Winton from country Victoria and New South Wales.

The biggest challenge in the three V8 BRute races on Sunday is to the Holden contingent, who have won only two races to Ford's seven this season - and those two wins were taken by Luff in round one in Adelaide, before he switched to a Falcon.

The Commodores have been allowed a 120 rpm increase in maximum engine revs to 5500 for this weekend and, although only a small power boost, it is expected to show a marked improvement in lap times under the V8 BRute Series performance parity control rules.

Holden drivers expecting to benefit include Victorian James Brock, who is still hunting for his first win in V8 BRute racing despite promising form.

Brock will have to fight some of the most competitive drivers in Australian racing, such his father Peter's Bathurst nemesis from a generation ago, Allan Grice, who has returned to the sport at age 59 with a lesson in toughness for younger rivals.

Also out to show Brock no mercy is Damien White, whose Falcon came off worst in a 130 kmh collision between the pair in round three last month.

The ute is back on track thanks to more than $30,000 contributed by his Wollongong home-town supporters at a fund-raising dinner last week and White says his hopes of winning the eight-round championship are undimmed.

SPEED CHECK on the V8 BRute Series at Winton

* Saturday & Sunday, 22-23 June. (Official practice Friday 21 June).

* Categories - V8 BRutes (Rd 4); also Nations Cup (Rd 4), GT Performance (Rd 4), GT Production Cars (Rd 4), Formula 3 (Rd 4), Mitsubishi Mirages (Rd 4), HQ Holdens.

* Saturday (From 8.30 am) - Qualifying, including Nations Cup Top 8 Eliminator; plus 2 x HQ Holden races.

* Sunday (From 8.15 am) - 16 races, all categories. Ute Muster display and competition for road utes.

* Tickets - Adults Saturday $15 all areas, Sunday $25 including paddock/pit. Students under 16 years Saturday free, Sunday $10. Ute drivers enter free on Sunday with paying adult passenger.

* Information - Winton Motor Raceway (03) 5766 4235, or www.procar.com.au and www.v8brutes.com.au.

-procar.au-

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About this article
Series General
Drivers Adam Brand , Ian McAlister , Grant Denyer , James Brock , Damien White
Tags AUSUTE