PITHER ENDURES DIFFICULT DAY AT TIMARU Palmerston North driver Chris Pither endured a difficult day at Timaru International Motor Raceway as he contested Round 4 of the BNT V8s Championship today. Pither had made a great start to his first ...
PITHER ENDURES DIFFICULT DAY AT TIMARU
Palmerston North driver Chris Pither endured a difficult day at Timaru International Motor Raceway as he contested Round 4 of the BNT V8s Championship today.
Pither had made a great start to his first outing in the BNT V8s Championship yesterday when he made the top ten shootout in his New Balance Falcon. That saw the 22-year-old start from 8th place on the grid in this morning's first race. However the race was thrown into confusion as rain swept across the circuit as the cars prepared for the start. Most of the cars started the race on slick tyres in the treacherous conditions and Pither drove a good first lap to be in second place. Unfortunately as the field came onto the front straight for the first time race leader John McIntyre hit the fence and bounced back across the track. Pither took evasive action along the grass but couldn't make it through, damaging the car. After that Pither admitted the Falcon "wasn't flash" but he got ready for the restart with the rest of the field.
After a great qualifying and opening lap Chris found himself at the rear of the field for the restart, bringing the battered car home in 19th position in the difficult conditions.
The weather had improved for the second race early in the afternoon but Pither and the New Balance Falcon were near the back of the grid. Chris battled his way to fourteenth position at the chequered flag, suffering with a misfire throughout the race. It wasn't until after the race that the team discovered the impact earlier in the day had loosened the engine mounts and the misfire was caused by the engine rocking over down the back straight.
Chris was fourth on the grid for the reverse grid finale and he ran second early before falling to fourth at the end. "The two guys who got by had more pace and I couldn't hold them off."
Looking back at his first weekend on the BNT V8s Championship grid Pither admitted his disappointment. "I was happy with qualifying and to run at the front but this morning killed what could have been. There were a couple of areas we were quick but onto the back straight we were struggling for grip mid-turn."
However Pither definitely acquitted himself well throughout the weekend and if not for the early morning incident the final result could well have been very different. Many observers were impressed that he managed to avoid the stricken car of McIntyre as he did.
Pither's next outing will be in the NZV8 Utes Series, which he currently leads, at Hampton Downs on 6 & 7 February.
Pither's efforts this weekend were supported by New Balance, Powerbuilt, Murphy Buses, Design Autotek and Sonata Lounge Suites.
-source: chris pither