Shannons Nationals: Saturday Wrap

Saturday 03 August, 2019
Photos: Nathan Wong
Another busy day of racing was capped off with a battle under lights at Queensland Raceway.
 

A bumper 16 sessions made up of both qualifying and action-packed races provided plenty of entertainment for the fourth round of the Shannons Nationals.

The day culminated in the traditional and popular ‘Fight in the Night’ Australian Production Cars race under lights.

Here’s how it all unfolded across the seven categories:

carsales TCR Australia Series

A lights-to-flag victory for the category’s visiting French driver, Jean-Karl Vernay, whose Audi was unstoppable from the outset.

Vernay put his car on pole in the day’s earlier qualifying session and led the entire race.

There was plenty of action behind the Frenchman, with Series leader Will Brown and Honda Civic pilot John Martin coming together on the opening lap. The duo both suffered damage and finished at the rear of the grid.

Tomorrow features two back-to-back races, with plenty to fight for and drivers eager to take it up to the leading Audi.

As well as the usual live stream, both races will be live on SBS from 1pm on Sunday. 

Porsche Michelin GT3 Cup Challenge Australia

Two races featured on Saturday, with wins to Max Vidau and Harri Jones in the respective races.

It was a mixed day for Vidau, claiming race one honours, but the number 77 failed to finish in the day’s second outing, missing out on same valuable Series points.

In the TAG Heuer Pro-Am class, it was Brett Boulton’s day – the local Queenslander claiming the class win in both races and maximum points with just one race to run on Sunday.

Class B honours for Saturday belonged to Victorian David Greig, with a first and second in class across both races.

Sunday’s weekend finale gets underway at 9.40am. 

MRF Tyres Australian Production Cars Series

The lights went on and the iconic Fight in the Night delivered more than two hours of action under the stars.

Beric Lynton and Tim Leahey were too strong in their BMW M3, claiming back-to-back Fight in the Night titles with wins in 2018 and 2019.

The weekend isn’t over for the Production Car pilots – another race awaits on Sunday. The two-and-a-half hour race is scheduled for 10.10am – 12.40pm and will feature on the Shannons Nationals live stream.

Australian Prototype Series

A stall on the start line didn’t prevent Series leader David Barram from claiming the race one win.

Pole-sitter and relative new-comer to the sport Daniel Gonzalez was ecstatic with his first ever podium, while Jason Makris rounded out the top three.

While Barram had a slow getaway, he was able to fight his way through the field and extend the gap at the top of the leaderboard.

Two races await the Prototypes on Sunday, with the first at 9.10am, the second at 3.35pm. 

Series X3 – Hyundai Excels

With a sizeable field, the racing didn’t fail to disappoint.

While the top three didn’t change between the day’s two races, there were plenty of battles throughout the 25 car category.

Cameron Wilson won both entertaining races, Cameron Bartholomew took out consecutive second places, while Tyronne Gautier claimed the final step of the podium on both occasions.

The category opens proceedings on Sunday with its final race at 8.40am.

National Sport Sedans

It was the Tony Ricciardello show on Saturday – the Western Australian was too good for his competition in both races.

The top three for each race was identical, Jordan Caruso and Shane Bradford finishing in second and third respectively.

Ricciardello’s Alfa Romeo hasn’t missed a beat all weekend and the category stalwart will be looking to make it a clean sweep in tomorrow’s final race.

That race gets underway on Sunday afternoon, with a 3.05pm start. 

MCA Suspension Queensland IPRA

Zak Hudson and Troy Marinelli both shared race wins across the pair of races on Saturday.

Hudson’s Mazda RX7 edged out Marinelli’s Nissan 200SX in race one, while Marinelli got his revenge, winning race two over Hudson by just over two seconds.

With 26 cars fighting for glory and a massive range of machines on show, Sunday’s third and final race promises plenty of excitement as the drivers look to shine on the national stage.

Sunday’s 12 lap finale acts as the final race of the Queensland Raceway event – with a start time scheduled for 4.20pm.
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