Dean Amos wins Australian Hillclimb Championship

Lismore’s Dean Amos broke through to win the Autralian Hillclimb Championship after going close twice before. Image: MGCCN/Gears and Wheels

After a second and a third, NSW’s Dean Amos finally won the Australian Hillclimb Championship with victory at the 2023 event, staged by the MG Car Club of Newcastle, at Ringwood Park.

His best time in the over 2.0lt Formula Libre, Nicholson McLaren V8-engined Gould GR55B was 32.66s which was 0.2s under the Track A2 set by five-time champion Malcolm Oastler in 2014.

It was also 0.74s better than reigning champion, Queenslander Dean Tighe (supercharged Hayabusa Empire Wrath) and a further 0.57s up on third placed Greg Ackland (under 2.0lt F/L turbocharged Kawasaki Ninja GA8) from Victoria.

Amos missed out on victory at Mt Panorama in 2019 by 0.02s to Oastler, and then after two years of no title due to Covid, had to settle for third to Tighe at the rain-shortened Mt Cotton event last year after a spin and gear selection issues.

At the 77th running of the championship, 96 took part with up to seven attempts on the twisty 720m track.

Amos went fastest overall on six of the seven runs, with the only exception being his fifth when he received a penalty. His second and third runs were also good enough to win the event.

Formula Libre cars filled the top 10 places with Warwick Hutchinson (OMS 28 RPV03/Rotary Turbo) fourth, ahead of Brett Bull (Van Diemen RF03K/turbo Kawasaki) and Alan Foley (turbocharged R Foley) with three covered by 0.3s.

The next two were first and second in the under 1.3lt F/L class was David Mahon (Dallara F394/Hayabusa) in seventh outright ahead of Neil Lewis (Fly-001). Ninth was Miles Hoare (OMS 25) and Dave Morrow was 10th and third in the 1.3lt class in his Kygger Suzuki.

Peter Brown was the highest placed outside of F/L, with 11th in his Pro Sport Mulsanne Supersports. The fastest Tin Top time went to Matt Brown (Audi RS4) who was 14th outright. Pauline Graham (Improved Production Datsun SSS) was the fastest woman and Travis McGeorge (Fiat 127 Sports Sedan) was the best-placed Junior.

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