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Smith fights back to win rain affected F5000 race at Hampton Downs

Submitted by on January 24, 2011

Fastest qualifierKen Smith (Lola T430) fought back to win a rain-affected first MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series race at the Hampton Downs circuit in the northern Waikato this afternoon.

Aftertopping the time sheets in qualifying on Friday afternoon defending series champion Smith started the combined F5000/F1 race on the first day of competition at the first of two NZ Festival of Motor Racing – Chris Amon meetings favourite but found himself on the back foot after running wide into the first turn.

Making light of the streaming track conditions, however, he came back and in a dramatic movewrestled his way past fellow front row starter Mark Dwyer (Lola T400) to reclaim the lead.

As it turned out that was very much it as far as the race was concerned, Canadian visitor Jay Esterer bringing out the red flag (to stop the race) soon after when he lost control of his McRae GM1 and clouted the infield wall on the way up the start/finish straight.

By the time the track was cleared the rainwhich had been falling steadily since earlier in the day had increased to such an intensity that a decision was made to complete the race under the Safety Car, Smith credited with the win from Dwyer, series young gun Michael Lyons (Lola T400) and fellow UK visitor Peter Dunn (March 73/A) with last season’s series runner-up Steve Ross (McRae GM1) fifth and F5000 category original Reg Cook (Lola T400) first of the series new faces in sixth.

There are two more races for the MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series at the NZFestival of Motor Racing – Chris Amon tomorrow (Sunday), a second eight lap sprint in the morning and the 15 lap Tasman Grand Prix final in the afternoon.

The MSC F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series is organised and run with the support of sponsors MSC, NZ Express Transport, Bonney’s Specialized Bulk Transport, Mobil Lubricants, Pacifica, Smith & Davies, Avon Tyres and Exide.

2010/11 MSC New Zealand F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series

Qualifying

1. Ken Smith (Lola T430) 1.01.162

2. Michael Dwyer(Lola T400) 1.01.723

3. Michael Lyons (Lola T400) 1.02.066

4. Steve Ross (McRae GM1) 1.02.212

5. Roger Williams (Lola T332) 1.02.261

6. Peter Dunn (March 73/A) 1.02.670

7. Jay Esterer (McRae GM1) 1.02.681

8. Alastair Russell (McRae GM1) 1.03.245

9. Aaron Burson (McRae GM1) 1.03.432

10. Reg Cook (Lola T400) 1.03.852

11. Andrew Higgins (Lola T400) 1.03.997

12. Russell Greer (Lola T332) 1.04.252

13. Ian Cements (Lola T332) 1.04.633

14. Greg Thornton (Chevron B24) 1.05.122

15. Sefton Gibb (Lola T332) 1.05.167

16. Michael Whatley  (Surtees TS8) 1.05.585

17. Clark Proctor (March 73A-1)1.05.634

18. Ron Maydon (Amon AF1-01) 1.06.304

19. Brett Willis (Lola T330) 1.06.517

20. Frank Lyons (Gurney Eagle FA74) 1.06.709

21. Peter Burson (McRae GM1) 1.08.618

22. Peter Sundberg (Lola T332) 1.09.600

23. Warwick Mortimer (Surtees TS5) 1.10.266

24. Poul Christie (Lola T190) 1.10.870

25. Kerry McIntosh (Begg FM2) 1.11.341

26. Hamish Paterson (Chevron B32) 1.13.511

Images: Fast Company/GroundSky Photography/Kia Kaha Media

Race 1

1. Ken Smith 11:16.102
2. Mark Dwyer

3. Michael Lyons

4. Peter Dunn

5. Steve Ross

6. Reg Cook

7. Russell Greer
8. Ian Clements
9. Gregory Thornton
10. Brett Willis
11. Hamish Paterson
12. Michael Whatley
13. Frank Lyons
DNF. Jay Esterer
DNF. Poul Christie
DNF. Peter Sundberg
DNF. Aaron Burson
DNF. Ron Maydon
DNS. Roger Williams
DNS. Alastair Russell

DNS. Andrew Higgins

DNS. Sefton Gibb

DNS. Clark Proctor
DNS. Peter Burson
DNS. Warwick Mortimer
DNS. Kerry McIntosh
DNS. Shayne Windelburn
DNS. Stuart Lush
Points after Rnd 1 of 6

1. Ken Smith (Lola T430) 84 points

2. Tony Richards (Lola T332) 70

3. Steve Ross (McRae GM1) 58

4. Aaron Burson (McRae GM1) 54

5. Andrew Higgins (Lola T400) 44

6. Sefton Gibb (Lola T332) 41

7. Brett Willis (Lola T300) 36

8. Ian Clements (Lola T332) 30

9. Russell Greer (Lola T332) 22

10. Reg Cook (Lola T400) 18

11. David Abbott (Lola T430) 15

12=. Lindsay O’Donnell (Begg FM5) 8

12=. Tony Roberts (March 73A/1) 8

14. Peter Burson (McRae GM1) 4

15. Stan Redmond (Lola T332) 3

16. Peter Sundberg (Lola T332) 1

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