28 Jul 2014

2014 Round 3 – SMP

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CAMS NSW SuperSports Championship – Round 3

Sydney Motorsport Park – GP Circuit

July 26th, 2014

 

Nick Kelly on his way to victory.

2014_r3_rk

The NSW Supersports championship round returned to Sydney Motorsport Park for round 3 of the series. Dark clouds and steady rain was the order for Saturday morning’s qualifying session. The track was completely wet, and puddles of stationary water made the conditions tricky. The electric Radical driven by Garth Walden handled the conditions the best, qualifying on pole with a time of 1.45:6643, this was a 0.6 seconds faster than Nick Kelly in the Radical SR8, a great effort by the ever improving Electric car.  The usually fast Stohr driven by Darren Barlow qualified 7 seconds off the pace and not handling the wet conditions, fortunately for him the outlook for the afternoon’s racing was for dry weather. Barlow was not the only front runner having problems, Neil Kenny in the Chiron was way off the pace qualifying last. His problem was more car related than the inclement weather.

Race 1 was held during the early afternoon and the cloud had cleared to a blue sky, however the track was still greasy and damp in some places. Nick Kelly on the front row made a great start closely followed by Peter Paddon in the Radical SR3. Greg Smith and Kim Burke also swamped the hapless Waldon in the electric Radical.  At the end of the first lap the order was Nick Kelly, Paddon (leading class one car), Smith and Burke. Walden who was in 5th place made an error and dropped back to 10th.  As the race wore on the gap between the leading quartet stabilized, on the other hand Walden was fighting his way back through the field passing 5 cars to finishing 5th. The final results were Nick Kelly 1st, Paddon 2nd (leading class one car) and Smith 3rd   (also in class one). Nick Kelly a deserved winner of race 1 with a fastest lap to boot.

By the time the grid for race 2 came out the track was completely dry and bathed in sunlight, however there was a single ominous black cloud towards the South West and it was moving rapidly towards the direction of Sydney Motorsport Park. As the field lined up on the grid the Chiron of Neil Kenny was missing and would not compete for the rest of the day. As the starting lights went out Walden made a brilliant start from 5th place, by the time the cars arrived at turn two Walden was already in the lead. At the end of the first lap, the three leaders Walden, Nick Kelly and Paddon had a slight gap from the rest of the field. By the second lap it was clear that Walden did not want to relinquish the lead to the hard charging Nick Kelly, the pair were now dicing at the front alone.  Chris Medland in the Radical SR8 was showing some great speed in the drier conditions and overtook Paddon for 3rd. The dice at the front now became a three way battle with Medland momentarily taking the lead from Nick Kelly. The threatening cloud had arrived and with it came a heavy downfall completely wetting the track. Cars tiptoed around for the final lap just aiming to keep it on the black stuff. The final order was Nick Kelly from Medland by a mere 0.2 seconds. In 3rd was Walden. Paddon finished a strong 4th and first in class 1. Back in midfield there was another great dice between Brad Shiels in the  ADR MCE 3 (class 2) and Greg Smith in the radical SR3 (class 1), the pair finished 6th and  7th respectively by a mere second.

 2014_r3_startRace 3 turned out to be the most entertaining of the meet. Late Saturday afternoon with long shadows covering a portion of the track insured that the drivers would cope with all different conditions throughout the day. Medland in the SR8 made a blindingly fast start and by the time the cars reached turn 2 he had a large lead.  Paddon, Burke, Walden and Brad Shiels (who also made a great start were dicing for 2nd position.  Medland’s increased the gap as the race wore on and by lap 7 of the long 18 lap race it looked like he was uncatchable. Behind him the dicing was intense and three different drivers had a go in second position. For the unfortunate Walden, the electric Radical came to a stop at turn 1 after contact with Josh Conroy’s Radical resulted in damage to the steering. With the power turned down the team were hoping to get the car through to the end of the longer race. Overall it had been a great meet for him until this point.

By lap 8 the order was Medland, Nick Kelly and Barlow, at turn two Medland had a big lock up sending him wide and subsequently just making the corner. This allowed the two chasers to close the gap. For the following few laps Medland committed the same error, Nick Kelly pounced as Medland’s car went wide and took the lead.  For the following 8 laps these three cars were only separated by a mere few seconds. Nick Kelly finally took the win making it a clean sweep, Medland finished 2nd but was relegated to 3rd with a 5 second penalty giving Barlow 2nd place. Paddon and Burke were also having a great dice for 4th position and also first in class one. Paddon came through to take 4th and class honours.

Great round by Nick Kelly winning all 3 races and showing great speed. Garth Walden took the Electric Radical to a podium in race 2 showing the potential in the car. After a slow start, Darren Barlow finished on the podium in the last race giving him plenty of championship points. Peter Paddon was the first placed class one car in all 3 races with a podium for bonus. Great racing by all.

Walden takes the lead in race 2, dark sky’s beyond

2014_r3_turn2

 

Race 1

1st     99  Nick Kelly        Radical SR8               (1st Class 3)       

2nd    31  Peter Paddon   Radical SR3               (1st Class 1)         

3rd     78  Greg Smith      Radical SR3               (2nd Class 1)

4th     68  Kim Burke       Radical SR3 RS          (3rd Class 1)   

5         9  Chris Medland  Radical SR8               (2nd Class 3)          

6         7  Garth Walden   Radical SR8 Electric   (3rd Class 3)   

             

Race 2

1st      99  Nick Kelly         Radical SR8             (1st Class 3)       

2nd      9  Chris Medland    Radical SR8             (2nd Class 3)          

3rd      7   Garth Walden    Radical SR8 Electric (3rd Class 3)                  

4th     31  Peter Paddon     Radical SR3             (1st Class 1)         

5th     68  Kim Burke         Radical SR3 RS        (2nd Class 1)   

7th     78  Greg Smith        Radical SR3             (3rd Class 1)   

 

Race 3

1st    99   Nick Kelly          Radical                     (1st Class 3)

2nd     2  Darren Barlow     Stohr WF1                (1st Class 2)          

3rd      9  Chris Medland     Radical SR8             (2nd Class 3)        

4th     31  Peter Paddon     Radical SR3              (1st Class 1)         

5th     68  Kim Burke         Radical SR3 RS         (2nd Class 1)

6th     78   Greg Smith       Radical SR3              (3rd Class 1)   

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