In a radical shake up of Australia's most popoular racing series, disgruntled teams and sponsors are seeking to remove the current board of TEGA (The Touringcar Entrants Group of Australia). A petition was circulated at Phillip Island last...
In a radical shake up of Australia's most popoular racing series, disgruntled teams and sponsors are seeking to remove the current board of TEGA (The Touringcar Entrants Group of Australia).
A petition was circulated at Phillip Island last weekend calling for an extraordinary general meeting of TEGA and the resignation of several high profile board members.
The petition, which has the support of around 15 teams, calls on Gary Rogers, Kim Jones, Dick Johnson, and Jeff Grech to resign from the board. The plan is to replace them with others including ex BRM and Brabham F1 driver Larry Perkins.
Teams and Sponsors are angry about the pre-qualifying situation that forces some teams into a sudden death single qualifying session and by what they see as a lack of communication and support from TEGA.
The move follows an unsuccessful attempt by Pepsi team boss Peter Mcdougall to gain a Supreme Court injunction to force AVESCO to expand the field to the full capacity allowed by CAMS.
Mr Mcdougall told Channel 31's In Pit Lane that sponsorships were at risk and some teams may fold if the situation was allowed to continue. Mcdougall said that TEGA and AVESCO needed to remember that they were representing all teams not just the well funded ones at the sharp end of the grid. OZemail driver Brad Jones, who survived pre-qualifying, also criticised the current system saying that the sport was in very real danger of burning a number of long time sponsors.
Some of the smaller teams have claimed that they may not even bother entering rounds in Perth and Darwin if they have to pre-qualify. Cameron Mclean, Paul Morris and Anthony Tratt were among the regular series drivers who missed out at Phillip Island.
"It's a long way to go and a hell of a lot of money to spend for perhaps as little as 20 minutes track time" said Lansvale Smash Repairs crew chief Wally Story. Mr Story said teams could not afford to spend thousands of dollars on travel and accommodation if they weren't given a fair shot at racing on Sunday. He also joined the growing criticism of the TEN network coverage which he said unduly focused on those teams who could afford to pay for in car cameras.
Catagory administrators AVESCO have cut the number of places available on the grid citing limited pit space, better entertainment and television requirements among its reasons.