28 October 2001 / Race 2, Round 7 - Surfers Paradise Polites Wins Gtp At Indy; Stewards Exclude Bowe HOLDEN driver Philip Polites held out a hard-charging Ford Mustang of John Bowe to win the second leg of round seven of the Century ...
28 October 2001 / Race 2, Round 7 - Surfers Paradise
Polites Wins Gtp At Indy; Stewards Exclude Bowe
HOLDEN driver Philip Polites held out a hard-charging Ford Mustang of John Bowe to win the second leg of round seven of the Century Batteries Australian GT Production Car Championship today on the Surfers Paradise Indy street circuit.
At the end of an exciting six-lap race, Peter Floyd crossed the line third in a Holden Commodore GTS, but later was elevated to second place after race stewards excluded Bowe from the results and fined him $2000.
The stewards charged Bowe with driving into the side of Polites' Holden Commodore after the pair crossed the line. Separately, Bowe lodged a protest over Polites' driving during the race, but this was dismissed.
Bowe started from pole position but Polites led into the first corner and survived heavy pressure from his experienced rival as the race progressed.
"John's car was better under brakes, but I was faster on the straights so I had to drive defensively," Polites said.
"My team has had some tough setbacks this year, including the $250,000 theft of our original racecar, so winning today at a major event like Indy is a great result for us all."
Bowe's exclusion caused him to slip from second to fourth in the championship pointscore, while Polites moved from fifth before the weekend to second outright, behind Subaru's Brett Peters.
Today's race saw Sydney's Nathan Pilkington, in a Mitsubishi FTO, wrap up the 2001 championship for the Hippies Sports Touring class. Second across the line to Honda's Nathan Thomas gave Pilkington an unbeatable 164 points going into the final round at Sydney's Oran Park on November 23-25.
GT Performance Series, Round 7, (Race 2, 6 laps):
1. Philip Polites (Holden Commodore GTS)
2. Peter Floyd (Holden Commodore GTS)
3. Mark King (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo V)
4. Wayne Boatwright (Subaru Impreza STi)
5. Brett Peters (Subaru Impreza STi)
6. David Wood (Honda S2000)
Poolrite High Performance: Philip Polites
Hippies Sports Touring: Nathan Thomas (Honda Integra Type R)
Fastest race lap: Bowe 2 min. 10.78 sec.
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS (after Round 7): Outright & Poolrite High Performance class - 119 Brett Peters, 92 Philip Polites, 85.5 Wayne Boatwright, 84 John Bowe, 70.5 Graham Alexander, 64 Ed Aitken. Hippies Sports Touring: 164 Nathan Pilkington, 121 Nathan Thomas, 107 Anthony Robson.