AUSTRALIAN GT PRODUCTION CAR RACING
INDY QUALIFYING 15th OCTOBER 1999
RICHARDS BLASTS HIS WAY TO GTP POLE POSITION
The street circuit master Jim Richards again stamped his authority on the streets of Surfers Paradise with a stunning performance in qualifying for the QR City Rail GTP Classic at the Honda Indy 300 today.
Having previously won in production cars, NASCAR and AUSCAR on the Gold Coast streets, the newly crowned Century Batteries Australian GT Production Car Champion put his Porsche 911 RSCS on pole position by a margin of nearly 2 seconds.
Ferrari F355 Challenge driver Wayne Park was second fastest ahead of 1996 GTP Championship winner Cameron McConville (Porsche 911 RSCS) who is making his first GTP start for a number of years.
McConville was also running with a new power plant today after suffering an engine failure inpractice yesterday.
"We decided not to run yesterday afternoon when the rain became heavier because we were confident the car would be strong in the dry conditions today," Richards said.
"I¹ve always loved racing on the streets of Surfers Paradise and while we have a bit of an advantage at the moment, I am sure things are going to be a lot tougher in the two races on the weekend.
"The Ferrari had trouble yesterday and you can bet Wayne will be quicker as the weekend continues and the other Porsche guys will be keen to do well."
Peter Fitzgerald and Ed Aitken were fourth and fifth fastest ahead of local Gold Coast runner Beric Lynton aboard his BMW M3-R.
John Teulan¹s Nissan Skyline GT-R fell to engine failure in the Meguiar¹s Top Marques Class A division while the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo V of Trevor John was back on track after blowing a turbo yesterday.
Garry Holt¹s strong showing in the Autobarn Class B division continued aboard his Subaru Impreza WRX after setting the fastest time in qualifying.
Local Gold Coaster Mark King (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III) was second fastest ahead of Subaru Impreza WRXs of Dwayne Bewley and Don Pulver. Iron Man Grant Kenny actually out-qualified his team boss Scott Jacob.
David Ratcliff snatched the Class C pole position on the final lap of qualifying aboard his Toyota Camry CSi after Roland Hill topped the timesheet for most of the session aboard his Holden Commodore VS SS.
Newcomer Scott Loadsman (Holden Commodore VT SS) was third fastest ahead of the Autobarn/Century Batteries prize competition Ford Falcon AU XR6 of Iron Man Guy Andrews.
Nigel Williams dominated proceedings in the GTP Lights Class E division aboard his Suzuki Swift GTi.
In his first GTP event for the year, Williams out-paced Super Touring driver Aaron McGill and female racer Sue Hughes also armed with the popular Suzuki machine.
Fellow female racer Carol Jackson again ran strongly aboard her Honda Civic VTi-R in the GTP Lights Class D division.
RESULTS QUALIFYING 1. - Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 2:05.793 2. - Wayne Park, Ferrari F355 Challenge (A) - 2:07.793 3. - Cam McConville, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 2:08.170 4. - Peter Fitzgerald, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 2:08.426 5. - Ed Aitken, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 2:08.679 Class B - Garry Holt, Subaru Impreza WRX - 2:17.455 Class C - David Ratcliff, Toyota Camry CSi - 2:22.292 Class D - Carol Jackson, Honda Civic VTi-R - 2:31.309 Class E - Nigel Williams, Suzuki Swift GTi - 2:32.413 Class S - Wayne Russell, BMW 323i - 2:20.565
Paul Ryan http://www.gtprod.com.au/ email@example.com