Holt's round win, Floyd's Championship lead Garry Holt scored a pair of race wins and a second place finish during round four of the 2005 Donut King Australian Performance Car Championship, to emerge victorious for the round, while Peter...
Holt's round win, Floyd's Championship lead
Garry Holt scored a pair of race wins and a second place finish during round four of the 2005 Donut King Australian Performance Car Championship, to emerge victorious for the round, while Peter Floyd will leave Darwin's Hidden Valley Raceway leading the Championship.
In the first race of the day, Floyd (BP Ultimate HSV GTS) powered away from the line and took the lead into the first corner, with Holt (Century 21 Real Estate Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII), slotting in right behind. The pair remained virtually inseparable for the remainder of the race, with Holt's four wheel drive Lancer closing in around the back part of the circuit, but Floyd V8 powered HSV easing away down the straight, denying any driver any overall advantage.
At the end of the ten laps, Floyd took the win by three tenths of a second from Holt. John Falk (Fibreglass International FPV MkII GT) continued his good weekend with a third place finish, the first podium for the FPV MkII GT in racing, while Beric Lynton (Donut King MW M3) set the fastest lap of the race on the way to making it four different marques in the top four.
Barrie Nesbitt (Donut King Holden Monaro), Barry Morcom (Rondo Building Services Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII), Gary Young (Readymix Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII) and Peter Boylan (AussieHire.com.au BMW M3) rounded out the top eight.
A troublesome weekend for Mark King (Delphi Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII) continued. After blowing a head gasket in the opening race of the weekend, King's team worked until 3am in the morning to replace the engine. In the race itself, King pitted early to check a possible problem with the brake pedal. The car was given the all clear and he returned to the track, albeit to finish thirteenth.
This all set the scene for the final race of the weekend, with Floyd and Holt each gunning for the round win, and a number of other drivers in contention for the final podium position.
It was Holt who got the best of the start and quickly built a two second buffer over Floyd. The gap remained stagnant for some time however late in the 15 lap race, Floyd began to close the gap, setting the fastest lap of the race along the way. The pair ran side by side into turn 1 in the closing laps, however Holt just had enough. He held on to take the win by just over a tenth of a second and secured the round win, his first of the year, making it four different round winners in four rounds for the 2005 season.
"I knew the start would be very important, and it was probably the best one I've ever made," said Holt. "I knew we were quicker around the back than Peter, so I decided to go for it and try to build a gap so I had some room between me and Peter on the front straight.
"I had pushed so hard in the early stages, that with five laps to go the car turned into a marshmallow. One minute it was pushing, the next it was oversteering, then the brakes faded a little bit and Peter was closing in on me.
"To his credit, he raced aggressively, but I don't think we ever touched. So I have to take my hat off to him for fair driving."
While Floyd couldn't become the first driver in the 2005 season to become a double round winner, he knows the points scored over the weekend will come in handy as the Championship goes down to the wire over the remaining three rounds.
"Consistency is the main thing in this championship - you can't win one race and then not finish another, you need to finish in the points regularly," said Floyd. "Second for the round gives us a good bunch of points and leapfrogs us into the lead of the Championship."
Third place in the final race of the weekend went to Beric Lynton, in his best race result of the season. Lynton found form as the weekend wore on; he struggled earlier in the weekend with a lack of grip and gearbox problems, but found the BMW more to his liking for Sunday's races.
Barry Morcom completed the top four in the race. Morcom's consistency during the weekend helps him move up to fourth place in the championship, with his home round next up on the schedule.
Barrie Nesbitt recorded a pair of fifth place finishes today to complete the debut weekend for the brand Holden Monaro. The car was actually finished at the truck in the team's truck, and turned a wheel for the first time on Friday morning. When combined with a third place finish for the car in its first ever race on Saturday afternoon, Nesbitt finished in a tie for third place in the weekend's points.
The man that Nesbitt tied with was John Falk. The Victorian claimed the final podium position on a countback (going back to qualifying results) and recorded best ever racing weekend for the FPV MkII GT.
"It's a fantastic result for Ford and Team GT, the first time on the podium for the GT," beamed Falk. "I really have to thank my crew. One of the guys has been working for me for 14 years, another has been working with us for a couple of months and we all drove up here in the truck and the guys have worked hard."
Peter Boylan, Mark King, Michael Brock (Coopers Pale Ale Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII) and the luckless Steve Cramp (CVW Engineering HSV GTS) completed the top ten. Cramp overcame clutch issues which plagued the car in qualifying, only to have power steering and engine problems affect his progress in the races.
At the conclusion of the weekend, Peter Floyd takes the lead of the Championship on 274 points. Mark King drops to second, on 245, just one point ahead of Garry Holt. Barry Morcom moves up to fourth with 158 points, just one ahead of Chris Alajajian, while and Beric Lynton rounds out the top six on 152.
"It will be a close battle for the rest of the year," Floyd predicts. "Oran Park will be difficult for the bigger cars, but Symmons Plains and Phillip Island should theoretically suit our car. It will be very hard to pick a winner between now and the end of the year."
The next round of the 2005 Donut King Australian Performance Car Championship is at Sydney's Oran Park Raceway on August 12-14. In the meantime, the action from Hidden Valley can be seen on Trackside, Network 10, on August 7. <pre> Hidden Valley Provisional Race 2 Top 6 (10 laps) 1. Peter Floyd HSV GTS 2. Garry Holt Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII 3. John Falk FPV MkII GT 4. Beric Lynton BMW M3 5. Barrie Nesbitt Holden Monaro 6. Barry Morcom Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII
Hidden Valley Provisional Race 3 Top 6 (15 laps) 1. Garry Holt Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII 2. Peter Floyd HSV GTS 3. Beric Lynton BMW M3 4. Barry Morcom Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VIII 5. Barrie Nesbitt Holden Monaro 6. John Falk FPV MkII GT
Hidden Valley Round Top 6 1. Garry Holt 84 2. Peter Floyd 81 3. John Falk 54 4. Barrie Nesbitt 54 5. Beric Lynton 52 6. Barry Morcom 49
Championship Top 6 after Four of Seven Rounds 1. Peter Floyd 274 2. Garry Holt 245 3. Mark King 244 4. Barry Morcom 158 5. Chris Alajajian 157 6. Beric Lynton 152