ASTC: New Race Format, Winton Practice Report

BOC GASES AUSTRALIAN SUPER TOURING CHAMPIONSHIP - ROUND 4 WINTON, VICTORIA: Practice Report, Friday, June 18 NEW THREE-RACE FORMAT FOR SUPER TOURERS A new three-race format has been introduced to the BOC Gases Australian Super Touring ...

BOC GASES AUSTRALIAN SUPER TOURING CHAMPIONSHIP - ROUND 4 WINTON, VICTORIA: Practice Report, Friday, June 18

NEW THREE-RACE FORMAT FOR SUPER TOURERS

A new three-race format has been introduced to the BOC Gases Australian Super Touring Championship motor racing series.

The new format, put forward by championship organisers TOCA Australia and approved today by national controlling body CAMS, will be used for the first time in the fourth round of this year's series at Winton in Victoria on Sunday. All previous rounds in the championship have been contested over two races since the series began in 1994.

The combined distance of the three races at Winton will be 120km, approximately the same as in the two-race format. TOCA Australia Chief Executive Kelvin O'Reilly said the points allocation for a third race in the drivers, manufacturers, teams, and Independents Cup championships would also be unchanged. He said the third race at Winton would include a compulsory pit-stop for all cars to change two wheels. The races at Winton will be over 10 laps, 14 laps, and 20 laps.

Gold Coast driver Paul Morris recovered from a spin into a sand-trap to emerge fastest in the three 30- mins practice sessions at Winton today. The first session was held on a damp, but drying circuit, and the remaining two were on a wet track surface. Morris, champion in 1995 and 1997, slid off the track at the right-hand corner entering pit-straight toward the end of the first session. His ex-works BMW 320 went into a sandtrap and stopped close to a tyre barrier.

Morris clocked the best lap of 1-min 26.70-secs, finishing just 0.01-secs clear of defending champion Brad Jones in an Audi Sport Australia A4. Championship leader Jim Richards was third in a factory Volvo S40, followed by team-mate Mark Adderton. Queensland Independents Cup driver David Auger damaged the front of his Gun Racing Alfa Romeo after sliding off the track into a tyre barrier in the final session, but he was not injured.

Richards leads the championship on 79 points, followed by Morris on 69, and Jones on 48.

DRIVER QUOTES:

KELVIN O'REILLY (TOCA Australia): "Moving to the option of three races is aimed at maximising our total entertainment package for race fans and television viewers."

PAUL MORRIS (NEMO Racing BMW 320): "A guy in front of me went through a puddle and it sprayed water across the track - I skidded into the sand, but luckily I stopped before hitting the wall."

BRAD JONES (Audi Sport Australia A4): "Yokohama have a new control tyre for Winton and it suits my car. It's a softer compound than what we've been running. We've kept working away on the new front-wheel-drive Audi and we're now the most competitive we've been all season."

PRACTICE TIMES (Friday): POS DRIVER CAR TIME 1.Paul Morris (Qld) NEMO Racing BMW 320 1:26.70 2.Brad Jones (NSW) Audi Sport Australia A4 1:26.71 3.Jim Richards (Vic) Volvo Racing Australia S40 1:27.00 4.Mark Adderton (NSW) Volvo Racing Australia S40 1:27.71 5.Matthew Coleman (Vic) Audi Sport Australia A4 1:29.72 6.Tony Newman (NZ) TC Motorsport Peugeot 406 1:30.31 7.Luke Searle (NSW) Roadchill Express-SAE BMW 318 1:30.97 8.Milton Leslight (NSW) All Auto Parts Racing Toyota Carina 1:36.43 9.Michael Downard (Vic) MPD Racing BMW 318 1:37.81 10.John Henderson (NSW) Henderson Racing Holden Vectra 1:41.25

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Series General
Drivers Jim Richards , Brad Jones , Paul Morris , Luke Searle , David Auger