Video and Photos: Bowe wins action packed Touring Car Masters in Perth
The final race of the weekend and it was Bowe from pole, sharing the front row with race one winner Miedecke, then the muscle of Bullas and Brad Tilley close behind.
The lights went green and Miedecke had a delayed start, launching but then bogging down the WesTrac Camaro, seeing the field go firing past, including the three Fords to watch all tucked in and at the ready to pounce. Nittis went wide to make a charge, finding himself out on the infield grass in a power slide through the Bigpond signage and rejoining with some work to do.
Bullas had made it to second in a challenging front pack, while further back Pye was making a move on the Pacer on Cameron Tilley who was keen to move forward after losing his gearbox in race two and having to rush to install the new box and make it back on track. Locking the brakes, Tilley went wide across the pit entry seeing Pye regain the position but it wouldn’t last long.
Tilley was hot in the Pacer
Miedecke was moving left, right, left all over the Tilley Racing GTHO into the final turn, their battle raging but Tilley was holding on, eyes securely fixed on the Bullas mustang ahead. As Bullas slowed and headed for the garage on lap four, a blown head gasket having destroyed his second engine this season, Tilley took third before a lock up in the heavy Ford saw rough contact with the rear of Miedecke as they came around to start lap two, allowing Richards to gain on the duelling pair and steal fourth from the Camaro.
Bowe was in the zone, posting a 1:03.4806, a new lap record merely 1/100ths faster than the short standing time of Richards, and his WesTrac mustang was looking unstoppable again.
Stack had again made a charge through the field to take ninth, with Nelson, Stillwell, Talbot and Karanfilovski were in a freight train of muscle around the Barbagallo circuit, while O’Brien was keeping his HQ hot on the heels of the very lucky Whiteside who was fully focused on the track ahead.
Nelson leading the challenge
Further back, the Porsche of O’Neill was gaining on the Wilson Charger, as Stillwell was looking up the inside, Talbot taking the opportunity to get in the hunt, but it was too close, the cars touching and the Talbot Torana looped at the end of the main straight, leaving Talbot on the burnout pad on lap nine, unable to continue.
Lap ten and Richards dived to the inside line of the Tilley GTHO through the popular passing section of turn one, seeing the Ford pair side by side through the corners, the power and weight matches giving each advantages through sectors of the slippery western track. It would take the Sprint of Richards until the back sweeper to gain the position.
Hard charger, Stack was pushing hard and took a spin through turn one, he too ending up on the skid pan, reentering the circuit as the battle of Cameron Tilley and Abelnica passed.
Stack fights for track with Karanfilovski
Karanfilovski had made his way through the freight train of challengers in his mighty new GTHO machine, pulling a gap on Stillwell with O’Neill right behind, but the news wasn’t so good for the Tilley GTHO, parking on the run into turn seven as Edwards moved to fourth with three laps to go.
The husband and wife battle was continuing in positions 13 and 14, the pair of Keene and Sparks not concerned with the evening dinner conversation, both striving to win the family battle and cross that line first. Keene was holding on Sparks, but she was right on his bumper and their challenge would rage to the flag, finishing some 0.003 seconds apart, Keene only just edging out his wife for the finish.
Out the front, Bowe had pulled an incredible lead of almost eight seconds, bringing home a pristine mustang ‘Sally’ to take his second Class C win for the season, and securing his place a the top of the championship table.
“I’m really please because firstly it’s good win. The car was just fantastic all weekend, well balanced, quick and part of that is because I know the circuit so well, I know how to read it.
Class winners from left: B – Stillwell, C – Bowe & A – Nelson
“We made little adjustments over the weekend with temperatures and tyres. I was pretty much the same as Gavin (Bullas) on pace but I wasn’t in a squabble for position so that was far better on the tyres.
“There’s nothing left with Sally that I’m not comfortable with now, and if you’re going to win you’ve got to enjoy it and that’s what I’m doing.”
Race 3 results
Class C round results
Class B round results
Stillwell holds to take Class B win
Chris Stillwell, Class B winner
“It was an absolutely fantastic way to finish after two horrible practice sessions and we hardly got any laps in so to finish with the class win is just fantastic.
“We weren’t happy with the car at all, having changed the engine to put alloy heads on it and ran into some manifold issues, as a result we’ve lost a lot of torque and the Porsches just gobble me up at this circuit.
“I spent half of this last race trying to get rid of John Nelson so I could then attack the traffic in front but the speed differentials and the way the cars brake is just so different so its very hard to break loose of a Porsche when you’ve got a V8 with not quite enough power.”
Class A round results
John Nelson, Class A winner
“Absoutely brilliant, I’ll take a win but a moral victory to Terry Lawlor – he really deserved the win.
“The Porsche was fantastic and even with losing the revs it was still competitive, really really good.”
Greg Keene/Amanda Sparks – tied in championship for Class A
Greg “A bit embarrased as in order to achieve the result I had to block Amanda in a way that I would be pretty annoyed if someone blocked me so kind of feel a hollow victory
“Probably some sort of record to cross the line 0.001 seconds apart side by side.
“It’s 3 all now so it will be on for young and old in Darwin but she drover brilliantly.”
Amanda “Greg came up to me after the race, put his arms around me and said ‘I do have a high degree in blocking’ and I guess at that point what can you do.
“There was no point in tapping as we’d risk taking each other out and definitely didn’t want that so just thought if I could hang on.
“I thought I had him so just kept going, now I found out it’s such a miniscule win I’m a little bit seething but we’ll look forward to Hidden Valley for another great meeting.”
“Lap seven of race two and the car was losing power and making a noise so I turned it off straight after and brought it back in the pits.
“We really couldn’t find the problem, checked rockers, valves, and now believe we may have pulled a head stud through, so it’s back to the workshop after a great start to the debut weekend.
“Very disappointed but we’ll be right and back on pace for Darwin.”
Championship points standings
The Touring Car Masters is proudly presented by Autobarn, and supported by Shannons Insurance, Rare Spares, Unique Cars Magazine and official suppliers Hoosier Tires and Australian Sports Marketing.