Monday, 19 October 2015

clubMINI Motorsport - Winton 10 Hour Relay Oct 17 - 18

The clubMINI Motorsport team participated in the Winton 10-hour Relay Race on the weekend (17-18 October).

The Drivers and vehicles were Geoff Vernon in his R53 Electric Blue Hatch, Peter Kaiser in his R56 Chilli Red JCW, and Craig Lindsell in his R53 BRG Ex-targa.
Peter Kaiser with his CWorks R53
The Support crew where Andrew (Macca), Craig W, Sally P, Tony P, Jeff S, Evans K and Gaylene C.

Day One
Practice went well with the guys working out what lap time to nominate for themselves. Unfortunately (and fortunately) Geoff’s MINI experienced problems during practice when the gear linkage on the shifter came apart!! The guys all joined together to work on fixing the problem. With less than 30 minutes of practice time to go Geoff went back on the track to test the repairs, but less than one lap showed that more tinkering was required.

MINIs getting some shut-eye before the big day ahead

Nominated lap times were: Craig 1:44, Peter 1:45, Geoff 1:50 – Geoff’s lap time was a strategic decision, not knowing how repairs would turn out!?
Craig Ls R53 Ex-Targa

During the lunch break the guys worked further on Geoff’s MINI and with sufficient hammering, and supply of cable ties and lubricants, everything was put back together … okay, there may have been one or two spare bolts and parts left over!

Around 14:00 Craig lined up in 6th position on the ‘grid’ ready for the start of the relay. Craig did really well, earning LOTs of bonus points. Peter went out next and did well too. And then it was Geoff’s turn … fingers and legs were crossed by the team and support crew! … and … Yippee!! Success!! Then repeat … Craig, then Peter, then Geoff.
Geoff's R53 getting some TLC by the support crew member Ev

So at the end of Day One there was great relief, and we enjoyed dinner together at a local Benalla hotel. The guys toyed with the idea of meeting early Sunday morning to check on the repairs to Geoff’s MINI but decided to leave well enough alone.

 Day Two

The race started early at 09:30am with Geoff on the track first … it must have been hard for him to ‘slow down’ to aim for his nominated 1:50 lap time. Macca rushed out to ‘the wall’ a few times to ‘impress upon Geoff the importance of going slower’ !?!

Geoff waiting to get out there
Peter went out next and towards the end of his stint there was a three vehicle incident that Red Flagged the event for a while. Fortunately the drivers of the vehicles involved were not seriously injured, but one Alfa Romeo and one Peugeot looked to be write-offs.

PK out on the track
Craig was out next. The day was warming up quickly and so was the track. Then it was a case of repeat … Geoff, Peter, Craig, Geoff, Peter, Craig. The rest of the relay went well for the clubMINI team, with the relay finishing at 15:30.
Craig doing his thing!

The drivers did a fantastic job, and the support crew were awesome too … A big thankyou to everyone for a great team effort!

By Gaylene (with some help from my friends)

And a few random car pics from the day...

Bugeyes galore!

A mean (and cute) Mini machine

The iconic 911 SC

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