14 Aug 2013

2013 Round 3 – Wakefield

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Wakefield Park, August 10 2013 – Round 3 SuperSports State Championship

 As you arrived at the Goulburn based race track (Wakefield Park) early Saturday morning there was a sense of anticipation. Great race schedule at the small but challenging 2.2km circuit, beautiful winter sun and most importantly no rain forecast for the two days. Even though the race meet is held over two days the Supersports fraternity decided to follow the schedule previously used in the last round and just race Saturday. This means a qualifying/practice session in the morning followed by 3 races during the rest of the day, the last race being a Trophy race.

This one day format has advantage as it frees part of the weekend, but unfortunately does not give much time for drivers to sort out their car. If your car is not right by the first race then a long day can be expected. Qualifying started early morning and even though the sun was out there was a wind chill factor that only Goulburn could provide. This equated to cold tyres and dust on track creating uneven grip levels. Only 8 cars ventured out for qualifying, a relative small field but the lack of numbers did not take away from the great racing to be had (race 2 was a cracker). At the end of proceedings Darren Barlow in the Stohr won pole, alongside him on the front row was the John Corbett car in the much more powerful but heavier Radical SR8.

Race 1: Only seven cars rolled out for the first race,(sadlyMasterclass points leader, George Davis suffered a gearbox failure which put him out for the weekend). Once the lights went out the diminutive field accelerated to the first set of corners. Peter Johnston Radical unfortunately could not stay on the black stuff and went off into the gravel trap on the outside of turn two. He was fortunate to be able to drive out of his predicament but doing so nearly lost half a lap to the rest of the field. At the front Corbett was leading with Barlow on his tail. The Radical of Corbett was substantially quicker in a straight line than the Stohr of Barlow, but in the tight and twisty section the latter had a major advantage. You could feel that if Barlow got by he would have the faster car and would pull away.

Richard Kimber also in a Radical was running 3rd with Macpherson keeping him honest in 4th.   Johnston was making a comeback after his initial mishap and working his way through the field setting some impressive lap times. At the front Barlow kept the pressure up and looked like he would take the lead any moment when unfortunately Corbett made a mistake,running wide at the fish hook and  handing Barlow the lead, and Kimber took full advantage of this and finished 2nd while Corbett settled for 3rd. The entire field made it home including birthday boy Brad Shields rounding up 7th place.

  Darren Barlow’s Stohr WF1 on his way to 2 race wins

Race 2 was to be the pick of the round. As the cars came out of the dummy grid and ventured onto the track Johnston had a harmless spin (probably due to cold tyres). Fortunately he was able to make his grid position for the race start. Kimber had an amazing start quickly followed by Barlow and Corbett; these 3 cars had a battle for the lead that started on the first corner of the first lap till the last turn in the final lap. The trio at front became a quartet once Johnston joined them. Lap after lap Barlow was diving under brake at every opportunity he got, but in the straights the two Radicals in front pulled away. On lap seven Corbett was able to pass Kimber but the same pattern continued with Barlow on their heels.

On the last lap in the back straight Kimber made a desperate late lunge under brakes, the momentum of the car in the corner made it understeer causing Corbett ( who was on the outside) to be pushed wide. The opportunist Barlow followed Kimber so as they turned into the home straight it was a three way drag race to the finish. Kimber’s Radical won. Barlow could not match the power of the Radicals and had to settle for third while Corbett took second. This was an amazing race, a race to be remembered and it goes to show that you don’t need to have a massive field to provide great racing. With all the action at the front taking the lime light some great drives by Macphersons, Shields and Ross are to be noted. Great race by all.

Race 3, the final race (trophy race) was the longest of the all at 16 laps. As the two previous races it was dry and sunny ……..but the wind had picked up and the temperature dropped considerably. During the warm up lap the shiny and beautifully presented Supersports looked amazing in the setting sun. At race start Corbett had problems getting away; this can happen as these cars are probably more suited to a rolling start.  Kimber, Barlow, Johnston and Macpherson took command of the race. Corbett got going and in the haste of chasing the field down had a minor lose at turn two.

 Kimber and Barlow’s battle at the front was as intense as the two previous races. The latter was able to pass on lap 6 and never looked back. Kimber finished a strong second while a fast Johnston came home third. One consolation for Corbett was him setting the fastest lap of the race during his chase. The Trophy race capped a great day’s racing where a relatively small field entertained the motor racing fraternity with some of the most skilful and clean racing.  A true day for the purist.

 

2013 NSW SuperSport Championship – Race 1

Pos

Car

Competitor / Team

Driver

Vehicle

1

2

AP Racing

Darren Barlow

Stohr WF1

2

58

RAW Racing

Richard Kimber

Radical SR8

3

66

 

John Corbett

 

 

2013 NSW SuperSport Championship – Race 2

Pos

Car

Competitor / Team

Driver

Vehicle

1

58

RAW Racing

Richard Kimber

Radical SR8

2

66

RAW Racing

John Corbett

Radical SR8

3

2

AP Racing

Darren Barlow

Stohr WF1

  

2013 NSW SuperSport Championship – Race 3

Pos

Car

Competitor / Team

Driver

Vehicle

1

2

AP RACING

Darren Barlow

Stohr WF1

2

58

RAW Racing

Richard Kimber

Radical SR8

3

17

 

Peter Johnston

Radical SR3

 

 

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