NZ Utes: Simon and Graham Beirne Timaru preview

MCDONALD'S UTE BACK TO MAKE ITS MARK Christchurch driver Simon 'Jnr Burner' Beirne is welcomed back with open arms into the NZV8 Ute Series fold this weekend as he makes his first appearance of the 2009/2010 Series at the final round in ...


Christchurch driver Simon 'Jnr Burner' Beirne is welcomed back with open arms into the NZV8 Ute Series fold this weekend as he makes his first appearance of the 2009/2010 Series at the final round in Timaru.

'Jnr Burner' will be at the wheel of his familiar and national award winning Team McDonald's Falcon which is in concourse condition and Simon who is known for his passion for motorsport is proud to be McDonald's ambassador in the Ford V8 Ute. "I couldn't wish for a stronger brand to partner and align themselves with us yet again, nor could our children who are both ecstatic about watching the "Golden Archs" at Levels, Timaru this weekend. It's about having fun and involving the whole family, there is definitely positive synergies in this relationship, good relationships need nuturing with clear expectations and communications paramount .... we are both looking forward to enjoying the spoils and successes at both Timaru and at the coveted non-championship Trans-Tasman event at the Hamilton 400 next month."

Simon has been absent from the series for good reason this year. "I have been very busy looking after our recently acquired retail business in Christchurch, Chevron Quality Cars as well as our wholesale brokering business, in the challenging environment we were all faced with it was about stabilizing the patient and making sure that blood was being supplied to the main organs. With both these businesses now well back on track, the luxury of motor racing now becomes a reality yet again. In addition our daughter was starting school and I have got married to my very patient, kind and loving long time partner Hayley up in the Hawkes Bay. In essence, apart from the wedding I have been looking to make money not spend it and consolidating instead of getting into racecars."

Looking ahead to his return Simon says, "am I excited - yes, am I nervous - yes!" "I get nervous at school swimming sports let alone at 220 kilometres an hour on the back straight at Levels going into John Jones Steel corner two wide. I'm really looking forward to it though. I will take it in my stride, put my best foot forward and do my best as always." I am aware there is a championship in place and this weekend decides it. I wish the drivers in contention all the very best. Our team is definitely strengthened by the fact team leader Andy Neale from Canterbury Motor Racing School is back for support and direction. Never far from his side is Richard and his reliable team from DCH Motorsport. I've been out with Andy at Powerbuilt Tools Raceway and Timaru for a shakedown and I'm ready to rumble!"

Simon urges fans to come down and support the McDonald's ute this weekend and they can also come down and shake his hand, receive a signed poster and check out the concourse condition Falcon at McDonald's in Timaru on Friday.

Last year 'Jnr Burner' was one of the fastest in the series and ended the 2008/2009 season with lap records at Manfeild, Taupo, Timaru and Teretonga while prior to that he secured the coveted title of NZ#2.

While Simon is making his return this weekend his father Graham 'Snr Burner' Beirne has been upholding the family name this season in what most people are saying is Graham's best season in motorsport.

'Snr Burner', at the age of 62 years-old, is well in contention for a national championship podium in his John Jones Steel Falcon against drivers old enough to be is grandsons! Last week 'Snr Burner' did an exceptional job to finish third overall and was the second fastest qualifier at Powerbuilt Tools Raceway in the penultimate series round - no mean feat. 'Snr Burner' is just 8 points behind Simon Grace, also of Christchurch with four races to go at Timaru this weekend.

Timaru is almost a local circuit for the "Burners" and Graham is keen to finish the series on a high with a National podium after having achieved consistently good results all season. This is 'Snr Burners' third season with John Jones Steel backing and he is thankful to Frank Van Shaijik and proud to be a contender for the national podium at a track with a strong John Jones Steel presence as signalled by the name of the corner at the end of the back straight.

The return of 'Jnr Burner' and the charge of 'Snr Burner' to podium success will add a lot of colour to this weekends racing.

The V8 Utes will qualify for grid positions for their first race of the final round at 10.35am on Saturday morning. Later that day they will battle it out at 1.00pm in an 8 lap race followed by a 10 lap marble draw grid race at 3.15pm. On Sunday, the final day of the championship, the third race of the round takes place at 11.40am with a reverse marble grid over 10 laps. The season concludes with a race from a grid based on accumulated points at 2.35pm over 8 laps.

In addition to the support of major partners McDonalds 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, Jeffs Vehicle Deliveries and Lets Get Graphic and DJ Hewitt Builders Ltd.

-source: simon beirne / graham beirne

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Series V8S