ATCC: Sandown report

AUSTRALIAN TOURING CAR CHAMPIONSHIP: 1995, ROUND 1, SANDOWN PARK, 5/2/95 Official Qualifying (See below for full team, car details) John Bowe Dick Johnson Glenn Seton Larry Perkins Wayne Gardner Tomas Mezera Alan Jones Jim Richards Neil ...

AUSTRALIAN TOURING CAR CHAMPIONSHIP: 1995, ROUND 1, SANDOWN PARK, 5/2/95

Official Qualifying (See below for full team, car details)

John Bowe Dick Johnson Glenn Seton Larry Perkins Wayne Gardner Tomas Mezera Alan Jones Jim Richards Neil Crompton Peter Brock Tony Longhurst Greg Crick ...

Peter Jackson Dash

01 Jim Richards       Winfield Holden Commodore VR
02 Tomas Mezera       Mobilenet HRT Holden Commodore VR
03 Larry Perkins      Castrol Holden Commodore VR

Heat 1

01 Larry Perkins      Castrol Holden Commodore VR
02 Wayne Gardner      Coca Cola Holden Commodore VR
03 Peter Brock        Mobilenet HRT Holden Commodore VR
04 Jim Richards       Winfield Holden Commodore VR
05 John Bowe          Shell FAI Ford Falcon EF
06 Tony Longhurst     Castrol Ford Falcon EF
07 Dick Johnson       Shell FAI Ford Falcon EF
08 Mark Poole         Holden Commodore VP
09 Chris Smerdon      Holden Commodore VP
10 Glenn Seton        Peter Jackson Ford Falcon EF

Heat 2

01 John Bowe          Shell FAI Ford Falcon EF
02 Larry Perkins      Castrol Holden Commodore VR
03 Wayne Gardner      Coca Cola Holden Commodore VR
04 Dick Johnson       Shell FAI Ford Falcon EF
05 Neil Crompton      Coca Cola Holden Commodore VR
06 Tomas Mezera       Mobilenet HRT Holden Commodore VR
07 Greg Crick         Castrol Holden Commodore VP
08 Peter Brock        Mobilenet HRT Holden Commodore VR
09 Jim Richards       Winfield Holden Commodore VR
10 Allan Grice        Holden Commodore VP

Overall Results

01 Larry Perkins 02 John Bowe 03 Wayne Gardner

Points Standings

01 37 Larry Perkins 02 32 John Bowe 03 30 Wayne Gardner 04 20 Peter Brock 05 18 Dick Johnson

As mentioned in my previous posting, it was Larry Perkins' weekend, with some soild drives in all the races and qualifying, only to throw away a potential victory in Heat 2 by spinning off the track while being pressured by John Bowe. Bowe who has been mentioned by many as a possible champion this year after some spectacular form in recent months had a great start to the weekend in qualifying, but it all started to go wrong in the Dash. He drew 5 and was unable to break into the top three, then in the first Heat spun off the track in the opening laps and had to make a storming drive through to fifth. In the second heat he looked a man possessed, slicing up to second, and was right on the tail of Perkins when he spun off. Taking full advantage of this, Bowe salvaged a win in Heat 2 from a weekend that promised a lot more. Wayne Gardner and the Coca Cola team were looking like real contenders, and he seems to have lost some of his impetuosity, driving impressively to third overall.

Another big mover on sunday was Tony Longhurst. In the brand new Castrol Falcon, Longhurst put in a couple of fiery drives after a disappointing qualifying session which only saw him line up eleventh. Heaving the car all over the track, Longhurst was great to watch, and although he finished outside the top ten in Heat 2 (due mainly to a slow pit stop), and once his team has the car sorted he looks a possible winner.

The conditions for both the heats were atrocious. Heavy rain during the first heat left a lot of standing water on the track, notably one large puddle on an apex and several big names came to grief early on. John Bowe was joined in off track excursions by some of the privateers and veteran Allan Grice. The conditions abated somewhat during the second heat, and by the end of the heat, Perkins and Bowe were searching for the wet lines to cool down their tyres. Other runners opted to change for intermediates or differing slicks in the hope that this might prove to be advantageous, although in most cases it came to nothing.

Honourable mentions for the weekend go to Neil Crompton in the second Coca Cola car who somehow drove the first heat with his windscreen wiper not functioning, and to Launceston privateer Greg Crick who took advantage of the conditions to drive to seventh in the second heat.

The next event is at Symmons Plains, Tasmania on the 26th of February, which I will be attending, so stay tuned for further details. This event will see the return of Mark Skaife, who elected not to race at Sandown after suffering a high speed accident at Eastern Creek Raceway some time before.

Comments, suggestions, corrections welcome. However, this and any other items I post are not to be reproduced, distributed or excerpted without the prior and explicit permission of the author.

Posted by : Steven Wheeler (swheeler@lawson.its.utas.edu.au) Motorsport news International - Australian Editor

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Series General
Drivers Alan Jones , Neil Crompton , Wayne Gardner , Jim Richards , Mark Skaife , John Bowe , Glenn Seton , Tony Longhurst , Larry Perkins , Peter Brock , Greg Crick , Dick Johnson , Mark Poole