Hossack's championship heat but New Zealanders merciless in trophy. After a forgetful round one at Wakefield Park, Darren Hossack has struck back decisively, wining the first of two heats that make up round two of the Australian Sports Sedan ...
Hossack's championship heat but New Zealanders merciless in trophy.
After a forgetful round one at Wakefield Park, Darren Hossack has struck back decisively, wining the first of two heats that make up round two of the Australian Sports Sedan Championship at Phillip Island. However the dominating New Zealand Chev Corvettes of John McIntyre and Kayne Scott overshadowed his performance.
In an eventful start, Scott lost out as Tony Ricciardello (Alfa/Chev) surged though to lead from the NZ Tranzam Ford Mustang of Bernie Gillon. The latter led out of the corner before spinning, exiting turn two. Ricciardello had to take avoiding action with McIntyre gaining the advantage and the lead over Hossack. With Gillon firmly bogged in the sand trap, a Safety Car was introduced.
Race action continued after one lap with McIntyre stealing an advantage as Scott sourced and found a way past the Hossack Saab/Chev. Scott then chased down the race leader over the ensuing laps, posting a new lap record in the process. However catching McIntyre was one thing, getting past another. Scott tried several maneuvers but without success. A brief excursion off the track in the final stages, forced him to consolidate second.
Shortly after losing second to Scott, Hossack was passed by Ricciardello but having the sports sedan lead was a short-lived affair for the Alfa/Chev broke fourth gear with the driver forced to simply hang onto the rear of the Saab which lost its passenger door as a result of early race contact.
Not far behind Kerry Baily's Nissan/Chev was under close scrutiny from Dean Randle in his Saab/Chev for all the race distance. The Toyota Supra/Chev of Des Wall held seventh for muck of the journey but a broken front splitter in the latter stages allowed Mark Stinson's Holden Calibra/Chev to sneak ahead.
Stinson had progressed through from 13th and through a dice involving Phil Crompton's Ford Falcon and the Opel Calibra, which ended with the two crashing. Behind them Steve Vines' Ford V8-powered Cortina held off a determined Ray Ayton until the latter left the track and broke the front end of his Holden Calibra/Chev.
NEW ZEALAND TRANZAM QUOTES
John McIntyre: "I'm rapped, first race in Australia and first win. Kayne really put the pressure on but near the end was able to pulled a gap and then could cruise to the finish."
Kayne Scott: "I haven't done a standing start in something like 20 years. We had the quickest car out there but everywhere we were quicker there was another car there."
Bernie Gillon: "I really smoked the tyres at the start but I led into turn one and led into turn two but unfortunately didn't come out of turn two. I went a little too hot, got the car sideways and then got a tap from someone and ended up in the sand trap. Then when I got going again a header pipe cracked and that was that."
AUSTRALIAN SPORTS SEDAN QUOTES
Darren Hossack: "It's the first sports sedan championship race we have won on our merit and there were still two cars ahead of us on the track. Certainly there was a lot going on out there. Copped a hit from Kayne when the Safety Car came out, which knocked the back in and that what's caused the door to fly off."
Tony Ricciardello: "Very disappointing actually, it just seems to be one thing after another. The car broke fourth gear around lap three. Then Darren went past and all we could do is just get to the finish. If the gearbox problem had not have happened I think we might have given the front two a good run."
Kerry Baily: "We changed front springs overnight and ran the car with the same settings we had here last year. That was about the best I could do but strangely the brakes went away late in the race, and that is a bit of a worry."
Highlights of each round of the REWARD INSURANCE AUSTRALIAN SPORTS SEDAN CHAMPIONSHIP can be seen on Network TEN's Trackside program. Each of the five rounds of the series will be scheduled for the program, which generally airs the week after the round. Trackside is a 90-minute program featured on Sunday afternoons from 2:30 pm right after RPM.