Ricciardello to make Sports Sedan title bid from pole
Tony Ricciardello will start the first of the three races that will decide the 2012 Kerrick Sports Sedan Series from pole position at Wakefield Park tomorrow.
The seven-time title holder enters the event 46 points behind series leader Kerry Baily, with 121 points available across the weekend.
Darren Hossack is also in title contention sitting just three points clear of Ricciardello, and managed to split his rivals in qualifying.
The trio were separated by just 0.3s at the end of two 50 minute sessions – Ricciardello’s best time of 58.03s proving the fastest ever lap of the Goulburn venue by a Sports Sedan.
“We left our second run late, we made changes to the car and wanted clear track, which we got,” said Ricciardello, who is fighting for the title despite his Alfa GTV being all but gutted in a fire during practice for the Mallala round earlier this year.
“Our focus is to win races tomorrow but as far as the series goes, it’s not in our hands.”
Behind the three drivers who have dominated the season, Queenslander Shane Bradford was fourth in his Chev Camaro, ahead of fellow ‘pony-car’ racer Phil Crompton, in his Ford Mustang.
Qualifying for the non-points scoring ‘heritage round’ for the Kumho V8 Touring Cars also took place at Wakefield Park today as part of the Shannons Nationals, and saw Chris Delfsma take the top spot with a 1:02.09s lap in his ex-Bastian Motorsport Ford Falcon AU.
Second fastest man Aaron Tebb was a full 1.2s adrift in his ex-Prancing Horse Racing AU, while Sean Fardell (ex-Perkins Holden Commodore VT), Steve Ingwersen (ex-Perkins VT), Darrin Renouf (ex-Phoenix Racing VS) and Brad Wimpenny (ex-Longhurst Racing AU) rounded out the small field.
Two-time defending series winner Adam Beechey scored the pole among a five-car Commodore Cup Series entry, out-pacing Chris Stevenson by 1.3s.
The day’s action was rounded out by the opening races for the Australian Swift Racing Series and Australian Saloon Car Series.
The former 12 lapper was taken out by Queenslander Reece Murphy, who led home Allan Jarvis and Damian Ward to take his maiden win in the one-make class.
The trio made contact as they ran three-wide into Turn 1 on the opening lap – an incident that proved just the start of a lengthy scrap.
The Saloon Car encounter went the way of Simon Tabinor, who closed in on the series victory by beating Harley Phelan and title rival Josh Keane to the chequered flag.
Both categories will contest a further two races tomorrow.