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|
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.
|Geoff waiting to get out there|
|PK out on the track|
|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)
|A mean (and cute) Mini machine|