Shannons Nationals farewells Oran Park
30/08/2009 at 8:25:27 AM:

Drivers, teams and fans said goodbye to Sydney’s Oran Park Raceway this weekend in its last national-level race meeting, Round Eight of the Shannons Nationals.

Seven categories put on exciting action over two days, with the healthy crowd invited onto the circuit at the conclusion of the final race, won by Aussie Racing Car driver David Lawrence.

The Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship had a dramatic day, with Tim Macrow taking a race win and lead of the championship by four points over Joey Foster on provisional results with one round remaining.

Macrow and Foster entered the weekend tied on points, with Macrow gaining a point after taking pole position for Race One to lead the championship for the first time in 2009.

Foster survived a brush with Mat Sofi to win the opening battle ahead of Macrow, after Sofi crossed the line first but was penalised for the move on Foster, a result which has been appealed.

Macrow won Race Two ahead of Sofi and National Class youngster Tom Tweedie, while Foster limped to third in the Gold Star class after a clash with Ben Crighton.

“I’m really happy with how the weekend went,” Macrow said.

“Today’s first race was like a rollercoaster and things didn’t quite go our way, but our luck turned around in Race Two and we got the result and now lead the championship.

“I wrapped up my F3 title here in 2007, won the F3 round here in 2006 and won in Formula Ford as well, Oran Park has been good to me, it’s a shame to see it go.”

Ryan McLeod put in a giant-killing effort to win Round Four of the Boylan Traffic Solutions Australian Manufacturers Championship driving a Holden Astra.

A last-minute entry, McLeod topped Class C in each race and finished second outright in the final handicap race, behind Class A1’s Steve Glenney (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X), who took a pair of outright race wins.

Second in the championship, Lee Castle (Subaru WRX STi) took the other while a solid performance saw Garry Holt (BMW 335i) maintain his points lead.

“I really regretted missing Amaroo Park’s last race meeting and I didn’t want to do the same for Oran Park,” McLeod said.

“Oran Park was where I went to my first ever race in 1980, and I’ve raced here a lot over the years.

“We had the Astra, brought it down and it’s been a great weekend.”

With a clean sweep of race wins in a bumper field, Darren Hossack moved into the lead of the Kerrick Sports Sedan National Series.

Hossack and Tony Ricciardello traded places in the standings, after Ricciardello suffered a mechanical problem in Race 1, while Kerry Baily and Des Wall completed the weekend podium.

David Lawrence won two of four races to keep his lead of the Aussie Racing Car Super Series, despite a mechanical problem in Race Three.

Former champion Paul Kemal won the round, ahead of Maurice Masini and Brad Ward, as title contender Adam Gowans also had a tough weekend, failing to finish Race Two.

Jim Clews, filling in for his son Kyle who was second in the series but currently overseas, was involved in a start-line crash in Race One which ended his weekend.

On debut, Shane Beikoff (AU Falcon) took out the Shannons V8 Touring Car Series honours, with a race win and a pair of second-place finishes.

Adam Wallis maintained his lead of the series with second for the weekend, ahead of Terry Wyhoon, who won two races but had problems in the opener.

Series leader Brett Holdsworth and Tony Bates split the Southern Star Windows Commodore Cup wins, with Holdsworth taking round honours over Bates and Nick Parker.

Saturday’s star performer was teenager Scott Andrews, who took pole position in just his fourth Commodore Cup round and first visit to Oran Park, before failing to finish either race.

Newly-crowned champ Shawn Jamieson continued his winning ways in the Kumho Tyres Australian Saloon Car Series, taking out the opening two races.

A delaminated tyre put him out of the final race, though, handing the race and round win to John Goodacre, over five-time champion Bruce Heinrich, making a cameo, and Tony Evangelou.

This weekend’s racing from Oran Park will be shown over two big episodes of SBS’ Speedweek, at 1pm on Sunday 6 September and Sunday 20 September.

The Shannons Nationals now enters a three-month late season break, before the season finale at Melbourne Sandown Raceway on 28-29 November.
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