V8S

AUS Utes: Series Winton Saturday report

Johnson cleans up in V8 Utes at Winton Raceway Grant "Grunta" Johnson swept the field today (15th May, 2010), claiming the Armor All Pole Award and backing it up with a Race 1 win, for Round 2 of the 2010 Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series & ...

Johnson cleans up in V8 Utes at Winton Raceway

Grant "Grunta" Johnson swept the field today (15th May, 2010), claiming the Armor All Pole Award and backing it up with a Race 1 win, for Round 2 of the 2010 Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series – protected by Armor All.

The unsponsored Johnson, hit the top of the time sheets early into the Session with a time of 1:38.94 and with only 9 tenths of a second separating 1 – 10th place (Chris Pither, Jack Elsegood, David Sieders, Andrew Fisher, Kim Jane, Ben Dunn, Gary Baxter and Gary MacDonald), it was bound to be a tight Race 1.

2009 champ, Jack "The Hustler" Elsegood, was the fastest car in the first two laps of Qualifying, the only driver able to get a clear run, however Ice Break Racings Chris Pither posted one better although not good enough to be in the all clear from Johnson.

Johnson got off to a great start in Race 1, and was never headed. The West Aussie is yet to claim a Round podium at Winton and is eager to make this his first.

"I've come third a few times in races and I've got a lot of fourth places under my belt for the round here but it would be great to make this my first Winton win."

"I'm looking for a naming rights sponsor at the moment so if anyone wants to be involved please give me a call. The Hi-tech team are doing a great job preparing the car and I just need to keep it straight and we'll have a good weekend," said Johnson.

Race 1 wasn't all smooth sailing; Pither was in with a chance to catch Johnson when the race went under safety car after "Captain" Robert Jarvis was turned around by Workhorse Collision Repairs driver, Ben Kavich, which resulted in a 30 second penalty to the #23 Ford BF driven by Kavich.

After the restart, another incident occurred between Rockstar Energy drink driver Jeremy Gray and Thirsty Camel's Craig Dontas between turns 3 and 4. Dontas missed a gear and Gray they both ran side by side into Turn 3 when they touched and Gray was turned around. Gray is recovering from a back injury and was just glad it wasn't that serious.

"I had a coming together with Craig I'm not quite sure what happened. I'm feeling okay - my legs are a bit shaky and just looking forward to sitting down," said Gray.

Back on the track there were lots of battles going on; mid-field Rick Gill, ISRI Truck Seats, Steve Hodges and Grove Fruit Juice Racings, Greg Willis had a mighty battle for 20th with Gill coming out the victor. Further up the field Elsegood "hustled" Pither for most of the race, but couldn't quite close the deal claiming third for the Race behind the New Zealander.

Rookie and series leader David Sieders was watching his rear vision mirror as Jesus Racings Andrew Fisher, Sage Automations Gary Baxter and Ice Break Racings Gary MacDonald followed closed behind. It was another battle for Bruck Textiles/Wilson Fabrics driver Ben Dunn with rookie Rhys McNally in his NRW Holdings Holden VE hot on his heels. Wollongong Performance Racings, Gary Carson rounded out the top ten in the Select TV Ford, a strong effort.

Unlucky on the field was Bob Jane T-Marts, Kim Jane who had to retire just short of the end of the race due to a broken Axle and Wilson Securities Charlie Kovacs who came together with Steve Hodges on lap 1 which caused a broken suspension.

Brad Patton will start on Pole tomorrow after claiming 11th position in his Chill/Wicked Ford BF with Carson alongside.

Patton is the first driver to start on Pole for the new reversed grid system, which is drawn by the Race 1 winner and determines how many cars will be reversed on the Grid.

Race 2, will kick off at 11:20am tomorrow, Sunday 16th May and will be followed by Race 3 at 3:40pm.

-source: aus v8 utes

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Series V8S
Drivers Bob Jane , Charlie Kovacs , Jack Elsegood , Chris Pither , David Sieders , Greg Willis , Andrew Fisher , Jeremy Gray , Ben Dunn , Brad Patton