Three-Way Title Tussle
22/10/2010 at 2:50pm

Two one hour endurance races will decide the drivers’ title in the 2010 Australian Manufacturers Championship in round six at Sandown Park Raceway on October 23-24. Either Garry Holt, Stuart Kostera or Jake Camilleri will be celebrating hardest than anyone on Sunday afternoon after the three have fought it out in what is predicted to be cool and at times, wet conditions.

Holt is the defending champion and has been reunited with the Class B BMW 335i that won him the Bathurst 12 Hour for a second time and put him in good staid for this year’s championship. He sold the car mid-season to Peter O’Donnell and carried on in the series in a Class D Holden Astra Turbo.

“We made a bad tyre selection at the last round and the car was not quick enough in the outright sense contention,” Holt admitted. “I think it will be Stuart’s title, but still it will be good to get back in the old BMW again.”

Kostera has been the pacesetter all season thus earning his pre event favouritism especially as he has a team mate of the calibre of Inky Tulloch in the second of Team Mitsubishi Ralliart Lancer Evo Xs ready to steal vital championship points away from his team mate’s rivals.

In the meantime the third part of this equation, Jake Camilleri in the Grand Prix Mazda 3 GPS, will be anticipating a wet weekend with excitement. The combination is renowned rain masters – even against four wheel drive machinery. But even if it remains dry he will “driving as fast and as hard I can for as long as I can,” he stated.

The AMC is also a class contested championship, all of which have already been decided. Kostera has accrued enough points to win Class A for High Performance AWD cars, and Holt likewise in Class B for High Performance RWD vehicles. Camilleri can’t be caught in Class C for Hot Hatches and in Production Sports the Renault Clio of Richard Gartner is home.

This is why there are some unusual pairings and drive line-ups for this round – like Gartner taking on a co-driver when he doesn’t need to do a driver change. In the meantime a couple of Hot Hatches, the GWS BMW 130i team cars have doubled up their drivers with Allan Shephard/Matt Hayes and Rich Shaw/Andrew Bollom teaming.

The AMC caters for greatest variety of makes. There is a Lancer Evo 9 for the former Ford Focus steerer Darren Best, a Mini Cooper S for Trevor Keene, and a Toyota Celica in the hands of Kean Booker. The local manufacturers are not forgotten either with Steve Briffa back in the HSV Holden and Rod Barrett aboard Ford’s FPR Typhoon.

Qualifying for round six of the 2010 Australian Manufacturers Championship will be at noon and 2.05pm tomorrow Saturday with the first of the two one hour races to followed at a scheduled 3.40pm. The second race on Sunday is slated to begin at 12.30pm. The two races will feature handicap starts with the slower class cars first away and there are mandatory pit stops for tyre changes for Class A (2), B and C. Class D only has do to a pit drive through.
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