April 18, 2019

2019 Yokomo Australian Touring Series Rd3 – Report

The third round of the 2019 Yokomo Australian Touring Series was held over the weekend at the New South Wales Radio Controlled Racing Car Club (NSWRCRCC) in Moorebank, New South Wales. Set at the beautiful John Grant International Raceway, host venue the IFMAR 1/8 IC Track World Championship back in 2001, the Moorebank facility was the perfect place to host the ATS. Despite lower entries than usual, the racing was fantastic with drivers attending from New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and even Singapore with Special guest Nicholas Lee making the trip down under to race in the ATS for the second time. The weekend kicked off with Friday practice, four qualifying rounds on Saturday, and one final qualifier followed by triple finals for all classes on Sunday. With race directing and commentary handled by Christopher Mitchell, the weekend ran smoothly, allowing for some close racing across the four classes on offer.

Modified Touring Cars always provide fantastic on-track action, with seemingly unlimited horsepower making this class incredibly entertaining to watch, with a large amount driver skill required to control them. Special guest driver Nicholas Lee made the journey from Singapore to join the party, however Nico suffered a mechanical issue in Q1 allowing Ryan Maker to snag the first TQ of the weekend. Lee fought back for the round 2 win ahead of Simon Nicholson and Maker 3rd. Maker and Lee battled it out through rounds 4 and 5, with 2 round wins each, Maker securing the overall TQ ahead of Nicholas Lee and Simon Nicholson, as Ari Bakla won Q5 to start 4th in the finals ahead of Jeffrey Mackie.

The first final saw a mistake from Maker, allowing Lee to pass and take the win from Nicholson, as Maker recovered to 3rd. However Lee found trouble again in A2, allowing Maker to win from a hard charging Jeffrey Mackie and Nicholson. A3 was set to come down to the wire as Maker drove a smooth and consistent race out front with Nicholson chasing all the way to the end. Maker held on to win A3 and secure the overall ahead of Lee and Nicholson rounding out the podium.

In true form, the 13.5T Pro Stock Touring class provided fantastic racing all weekend, with Christian Atal showing early pace with a Q1 win from Terry Norman. Young South Australian frontrunner Jordan Hunting stepped up to the plate, taking wins in Q2 and Q3. Terry Norman spent the day creeping under the radar, finally peaking at the close of Saturday with the round 4 TQ, while Tom De Nardis emerged from deep in the field to snatch the final round TQ on Sunday morning.

Norman took advantage of his late blooming qualifying speed to stretch his legs in the A mains, taking the win in all three A-finals to secure the overall win. Behind him was nothing but smooth sailing, as Damian Zarb managed to pull off a fantastic drive from 7th to 2nd in A1 from Christian Atal 3rd. A2 saw Jordan Hunting recovered from 4th on the grid to secure 2nd while Steve Georgopoulos came home 3rd as Zarb and Atal fell down the order. A3 saw Atal hold onto 2nd while Tom De Nardis brought up the 3rd place finish from Zarb and Brian Stewart. Terry Norman stood on the top of the podium as the turbulent mains saw Christian Atal 2nd from Damian Zarb, Steve Georgopoulos and Jordan Hunting filling the top 5.
Norman checked out all finals to win

In 21.5T Stock Touring Q1, Ray Zarb took advantage of a mistake from series leader Glenn Wilson to snatch the first TQ of the event early on Saturday morning. Wilson fought back to win rounds 2, 3 and 5 …securing the overall TQ ahead of a continuously improving Scott Griffiths and the ever-consistent Calvin “50 Cal” Holmes.

Come finals time it was strictly business for Glenn Wilson, who led from the pole spot in all three finals and took each win by over ten seconds to secure the overall win and complete wrap up the 2019 ATS Series win ahead of the final round in Brisbane. “50 Cal” Holmes took advantage of his blinding fast starts to jump into 2nd for A1 and A2 and secure 2nd overall for the round ahead of Scott Griffiths, Ray Zarb and young talent Lachlan Pearson wrapping up the top 5.

In 1/12 13.5T Stock, Ricky Vocale stayed true to his form from the first two rounds of the ATS, sweeping all of Saturday’s qualifying rounds from Tom De Nardis and Brian Stewart. The mains were much the same as Vocale stormed away with the first 2 mains and decided to watch them battle it out during the 3rd, Brian Stewart pulled off the A3 win to secure 2nd from Michael Stone 3rd. Vocale’s 3rd round win on the trot hands him the ATS series win for 2019 with one round to spare in Brisbane, QLD later this year.

After Qualifying completed on Saturday afternoon, it was held a “Dash for Cash” hot-lap competition for the very first time. Using a borrowed 13.5T Touring car, the Modified drivers each had one flying lap to set the best lap time they could … running in the reverse direction. New South Wales local Jeffrey Mackie threw down an absolutely punched lap, knocking out an 18-second lap with zero practice to claim the win and made himself a little richer in the process. The Dash for Cash proved so popular it is planed to bring it out at round 4 in Brisbane.

The Yokomo Australian Touring Series heads to England Park Raceway next, come join us June 14-16 in Brisbane, Queensland for the final round of the 2019 Series.

Source: Australian Touring Series [atsrc.com.au]


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