Burt and Thomas win Baskerville battle of the fittest

Wednesday 17 July, 2019
Photos: James Griffiths/Optical Note Productions
The Autrocraft Baskerville 1000 has seen competitors take on hundreds of laps of Tasmania’s Baskerville Raceway in two days of non-stop action.
With 176 drivers attempting to complete as many laps as they could over a six hour period, scoring points for laps within one to two seconds of a nominated time, it was always going to be an entertaining weekend.
On the first day of competition, nothing could separate the Rick Burt led Mitsubishi Mirage and the Andy Bennett driven Honda Intergra for three hours, with both crews exchanging blows and claiming points. 

However as the day reached the pointy end, the Mirage eventually broke away from the Intergra to secure victory with 765 points from 235 laps, while Bennett posted 730 points from 227 laps. 

Rounding out the top three was Mitsubishi Magna pilot Paul Baily, who fell just 15 points shy of Bennett’s score after running the most laps of the day with 238.
Driving alongside his son Liam and best friend’s son Wayne, an emotional Burt was thrilled to come away with his maiden victory at the 1000.
“It was just amazing. Last time we finished sixth outright and we had a grin for a week - this time we’re going to have a grin for a month,” Burt said.
"It was absolutely fantastic and well organised event. We had a good mixture of weather that included monsoons, as well as having a few safety cars. The traffic was good and the car ran faultless.
“We had a very good battle with the Honda for at least three hours, but we managed to took advantage due to fuelling when we needed to and we did the maximum amount of laps as we could. 

"It was also just an absolute thrill to share a car with him over a six-hour endurance regularity. It was just amazing. It was a highlight of my career thus far.”

The heavy hitters came on the second day of action as Callan Thomas led from start to finish in his Ford Falcon to comfortably seal victory after 246 laps with a score of 885 points.
Remarkably, Thomas ran the least amount of laps out of the top five, as second place went to the six driver Mitsubishi Mirage – led by Ben Hoare, the team falling 65 points behind the Falcon. Peter Kingston and his Holden Astra took out third with a score of 780. 

With the event running smoothly despite some challenging weather conditions, Baskerville 1000 Chair Bruce Thomas was happy with proceedings. 

“Despite the wintery conditions, the event was once again a great success with very few on-track incidents and only one or two break-downs,” Thomas said.
“176 drivers were entered in the event and had to deal with challenging conditions including snow on the surrounding mountain. However we had an enthusiastic group of drivers, as well as the debut of four new CAMS officials which was great.
“With the total of participants for the year now at 390, the event has been successful in providing a means by which people can further their motor sport interests.”