CENTURY BATTERIES AUSTRALIAN GT PRODUCTION CAR CHAMPIONSHIP WINTON QUALIFYING 21st AUGUST 1999 THOMAS OUT TO TURN THE TABLES IN CLASS E Class E front-runner Nathan Thomas has continued his last gasp attack on the class title by qualifying...
CENTURY BATTERIES AUSTRALIAN GT PRODUCTION CAR CHAMPIONSHIP
WINTON QUALIFYING 21st AUGUST 1999
THOMAS OUT TO TURN THE TABLES IN CLASS E
Class E front-runner Nathan Thomas has continued his last gasp attack on the class title by qualifying fastest in both sessions at Winton Motor Raceway today for round seven of the Century Batteries Australian GT Production Car Championship.
The Suzuki driver has been the pacesetter in the GTP Lights small car class for production cars up to 1.8 litres.
But a run of unfortunate luck including being punted off at Calder Park has seen him trailing the Proton M21 Coupe of Kosi Kalaitzidis by 27 points.
"We have to win every race for the rest of the year and make sure that we finish - that was the plan for the whole season, but it hasn’t worked out that way," Thomas said.
"If Kosi manages to drop a race we will be in with a big chance, but he has been pretty reliable all year so all we can do is to concentrate on beating him.
"These are all new tracks for us this year and I have learned a lot, but basically I have to give the little Suzuki everything it's got because the Proton has a lot of straight line speed."
Peter Fitzgerald's outstanding recent pace continued in the Meguiar's Top Marques Class A division with two pole positions aboard his Porsche 911 RSCS.
The Ferrari F355 Challenge of Wayne Park showed dramatic improvement from yesterday to put the Italian Stallion on the front row for both races ahead of the Porsche 911 RSCS of championship leader Jim Richards in race one and Ed Aitken in race two.
Ray Lintott's Dodge Viper GTS Coupe also improved from yesterday to break into the top ten as did the Lotus Esprit Sport 300 of Paul Freestone.
With Autobarn Class B championship leader Geoff Full absent for the weekend, Mazda RX7 driver Paula Elstrek set the pace ahead of the similar machine of Bob Hughes.
Last round Class B winner Mark King (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III) was third fastest in both sessions.
Championship debutante John McIroy surprised to be second fastest in the opening Class C session aboard his Ford Falcon XR8. Class C title leader Peter Phelan (Holden Commodore VT SS) was fastest in both sessions.
Ric Shaw's Toyota MR2 Bathurst again headed the Class S battle in both sessions ahead of team-mate Colin Osborne.
Phil Kirkham (Mazda 626) set the GTP Lights Class D pace from the Holden Vectra 2.2 GLs of Melinda Price and Sam Newman.
With Nathan Thomas (Suzuki Swift GTi) dominant in Class E, Warren Luff led the chase of the Suzuki driver aboard his Peugeot 306 Style.
Championship leader Kosi Kalaitzidis was third fastest in both sessions in his Proton M21 Coupe while local driver Darren Best moved his Hyundai Excel Sprint Twin Cam up to fourth fastest in the afternoon session.
RESULTS QUALIFYING ONE 1. - Peter Fitzgerald, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:29.555 2. - Wayne Park, Ferrari F355 Challenge (A) - 1:30.147 3. - Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:30.346 4. - Domenic Beninca, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:30.372 Class B - Paula Elstrek, Mazda RX7 - 1:35.040 Class C - Peter Phelan, Holden Commodore VT SS - 1:37.858 Class D - Phil Kirkham, Mazda 626 - 1:40.649 Class E - Nathan Thomas, Suzuki Swift GTi - 1:40.457 Class S - Ric Shaw, Toyota MR2 Bathurst - 1:37.271
COMPLETE RESULTS: http://www.racetime.com.au/racedata/w9939/q02fast.htm
QUALIFYING TWO 1. - Peter Fitzgerald, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:29.568 2. - Wayne Park, Ferrari F355 Challenge (A) - 1:30.122 3. - Ed Aitken, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:30.145 4. - Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS (A) - 1:30.353 Class B - Paula Elstrek, Mazda RX7 - 1:35.088 Class C - Peter Phelan, Holden Commodore VT SS - 1:38.859 Class D - Phil Kirkham, Mazda 626 - 1:40.496 Class E - Nathan Thomas, Suzuki Swift GTi - 1:41.064 Class S - Ric Shaw, Toyota MR2 Bathurst - 1:37.455
COMPLETE RESULTS: http://www.racetime.com.au/racedata/w9939/q06fast.htm
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