BNT: Beirne Teretonga Park preview


It has been a great start to the ENZED V8 Ute Challenge for Simon 'Jnr Burner' Beirne of Christchurch and he is keen to maintain the momentum when Round 3 of the series takes place at Teretonga Park near Invercargill this weekend.

Fresh from a great round at his home circuit in November the Team McDonald's Falcon driver has been fast and consistent this season and is looking for a continuation of that this weekend. 'Junior', the lap record holder at Teretonga will arrive in the south second in the championship. "Our goal this season was to be consistent and we achieved that at the opening two rounds. To be second overall at this point means a consistent championship. Mentally we are in a good position against our fellow competitors with several already playing catch up. As we have seen in football, playing catch up is always dangerous, so we will be looking to stay out of trouble and cement those points."

Both 'Jnr Burners' Team McDonald's Falcon and his father Graham 'Snr Burner' Beirnes John Jones Steel Falcon have been meticulously prepared since the previous round in November and 'Junior' says the vehicles look "amazing." "My Team McDonald's Falcon was the best it has ever been prepared at the last round (at Powerbuilt Tools Raceway in Christchurch). The ute was fantastic. The set up was great and we want to build on that platform and have a really good weekend. Hopefully, all the stars will align and we will make it happen again."

The Burners will not have the undivided attention of engineer Andy Neale this weekend as he will also be involved with Toyota Racing Series cars. However Simon does not feel this will be an impediment. "I don't expect it to inhibit us. We are well prepared and Andy will be looking over our shoulder and is only a phonecall away if we get into difficulty. We have data from the previous years. The rest is up to us."

The Burners also have a strong connection with the south. Graham's wife Lynn, Simon's mother, is originally from Invercargill. "I would love to win the round for Mum and the family. Lots of memories herald from Invercargill and we intend to make her proud. However it is one step at a time. We are aware of our competitors and what is at stake."

Meanwhile Graham 'Snr Burner' will be looking for an improvement in his luck at Teretonga. Third in the championship last year he has had a tough start to this seasons campaign. He too will be looking for a consistent run this weekend and a little luck to fall his way.

Testing for the ENZED V8 Ute Challenge competitors takes place with two sessions on Friday - the first at 10.50am and the other at 3.55pm. The following morning qualifying takes place at 9.45am before the opening race over 8 laps at 2.50pm.

The final two races, the first over 8 laps the second over 12, are scheduled for 10.20am and 2.50pm on Sunday.

In addition to the support of major partners McDonald's and John Jones Steel in conjunction with Simon Beirne Limited, "Integrity in Vehicle Brokering," the team also has support from Bruce Raxworthy Panel & Paint, Chevron Quality Cars - Driving Excellence, Business IT Software Management Systems, Mag & Turbo Warehouse, NZVD Transport, Lets Get Graphic, DJ Hewitt Builders Ltd and Vehicle Safety Systems {VSS} And Compliance.

-source: lb/beirne

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About this article
Series V8S
Teams Toyota Racing