Round three Mallala preview

Doing it on their own in South Australia The midway point of the Reward Insurance series sees a decidedly different course for the winged wonders of Australian motor racing. Firstly Mallala is away from the more traditional eastern ...

Doing it on their own in South Australia

The midway point of the Reward Insurance series sees a decidedly different course for the winged wonders of Australian motor racing.

Firstly Mallala is away from the more traditional eastern Australian seaboard venues, and secondly the category also steps from a support role on the AVESCO V8 Supercar series' to headline this national meeting.

The program also sees Truck Racing for the first time this year, round one of the Interstate Challenge for Improved Touring plus a support cast that includes HQ Holdens, Formula Vees, Superkarts and more.

Already eyeing off the prestigious claim to snare a record five ASSC titles, Tasmanian-born Kerry Baily has a handy 24-point lead and that came curtesy of a win at the opening round (Wakefield Park) followed by a third at Phillip Island.

The Nissan 300ZX/Chev V8 driver will be eager to keep the points adding up, for one bad result will bring Victorian Dean Randle (in a Saab powered by a big Chev V8), and the New South Wales pair of Graham Smith (Fiat Turbo-powered Opel Calibra) and Des Wall (Toyota Supra/Chev V8) right into contention.

Victorian Darren Hossack (Saab/Chev) and reigning champ Tony Ricciardello (Alfa/Chev) from West Australia, are pretty well out of championship contention, but after jousting for top honours at Phillip Island's round two, the two are fancied to decide round three in another engrossing battle.

Several others also have podium stakes including Mick Monterosso. The South Australian has been absent from the championship so far but will be a strong threat on his home circuit. His short wheelbase Ford Escort with its brutish Chev V8 power has had a number of drive train failures last year, and if these problems have been overcome, then its fearsome reputation for getting off the line, could give many a headache.

Queenslanders will be well represented at this round. Included in their number will be the sleek Pontiac Trans Am of Jeff Barnes, the Ford V8 powered Falcon of Phil Crompton and Charlie Senese in another Falcon which is Chev powered. NSW's Daniel Jameson was the fastest qualifier at round one but accident damage to the exotic Jaguar/Chev has sidelined him since. Now that the Holden Calibra/Chev of Mark Stinson made gains in reliability, he is hoping to regain some of its lost speed.

Included in the hot field will be the Holden Calibra/Chevs of Mark Duggan and Ray Ayton which have had indifferent form so far, that is, one good round and one not so good. Rodney Woods is itching for more racing after debuting the ex-Bob Jolly Commodore/Chev at round two while Fred Axisa is hoping to go further than his qualifying crash at the final round of 2002 in his Commdore/Chev.

CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS
1-Kerry Baily 72, 2-Dean Randle 48, 3-Graham Smith 46, 4-Des Wall 42, 5-Mark Duggan 35, 6-Trent Young 30, 7-Phil Crompton 28, 8-Charlie Senese 27, 9-Jeff Barnes 22, Bill Martin 22.

ROUND THREE SCHEDULE
Friday May 30: Sports Sedan Practice 11:00-11:20, 14:55-15:15.
Saturday May 31: Sports Sedan Qualifying 11:20-11:50, 15:05-15:35.
Sunday June 1: Sports Sedan Warm-Up 8:55-9:05, Race One (8 laps) 10:35,
Sunday June 1: Race One (10 laps) 13:10, Race Two (12 laps) 15:05.

-www.sportssedans.com.au

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Series General
Drivers Darren Hossack , Des Wall , Rodney Woods , Bill Martin , Tony Ricciardello , Graham Smith , Phil Crompton , Phillip Island