Titles to be decided in Rodin Cars Super GT Series at Taupo
When round four of the Rodin Cars Super GT Series gets underway this weekend at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Taupo there will be plenty to play for with two class titles to be decided.
In the GT4 class, McLaren 570 driver Nigel Cromie leads the way, from Aston Martin racer Stephen Harrison, who is only 12-points behind in second. Fellow Aston Martin driver Shane Helms only 52 points further behind in third. Grant Aitken in his Porsche Cayman sits in fourth 80 points off the lead.
In the Porsche class, Martin Dippie leads by 11-points from nearest rival Rob Steele, despite not winning a race this season – a string of second and third placing’s seeing him a top of the point’s table. Paul Kelly holds down third spot, 76 points behind Dippie.
With a close points gap between the title contenders and close racing predicted on track, the other factor teams and drivers are wary of is tyres.
The Taupo circuit is widely known as a ‘high wear’ circuit, and with drivers allocated just eight new Michelin tyres for the weekend, tyre management across the three races is going to be crucial for a good result.
“Managing the tyres is going to be quite critical this weekend,” says Grant Aitken, who is fourth in GT4 aboard his Porsche Cayman.
“You only have eight new tyres for the weekend, so you will have to make sure you can make those last across the three races.”
“I think the McLaren’s might struggle to make them last 60-minutes, and it might give us a shot at a podium.”
Joining Cromie in GT4, the rest of the grid sees entries from Brent Forman, Todd Bawden, David Cranna, David Cremer and Francois Beziac all in McLaren’s.
Two Aston Martin’s will be in the hands of Stephen Harrison and Shane Helms.
Allan Sargeant will again campaign the sole Ginetta G55, with Jono McFarlane back in his Mercedes AMG GT4. Wayne Leach also returns in his Ferrari 458.
A trio of Porsche Cayman GT4’s will run in the hands of Grant Aitken, Heremana Malmezac, with David Rogers and Brian Green sharing the driving duties over the weekend.
In the Porsche class, seven Porsche 997 and 991 Cup cars will line up in the hands of Martin Dippie (991) with Rob Steele & Paul Southam (991) sharing a car.
Also look for Paul Kelly (991), Kris Bostock (991), Martin Neill (997), Connor Adam (997) in their respective machines as well as new comers Sean Kirkpatrick & James Webb who will be sharing a Porsche 997.
The race weekend at Taupo is scheduled to hold two 30-minute races, with drivers dropping their worst placing out of the two, before the one-hour feature race on Sunday afternoon.
The fourth and final round of the Rodin Cars Super GT Series is scheduled for 26/27 March at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupo.