With so many classes of door to door racing, Sports Sedan is often over looked due to the amount of money that floats around in the category. A lot of drivers don’t have the 100K + to build a Sports sedan chassis to compete with the big boys.
As you are about to find out, you might not need tube chassis, big HP motors and full slicks to really enjoy yourself in this category. Stephen Thompson has sat behind the wheel of many different cars in different classes from Hillclimb spec Evos running the Bathurst Hillclimb, to a 1.6L Mirage smashing laps out with Improved Production.
I’ve decided for this year to concentrate on a series door to door racing to get some more experience before deciding what to do in 2016. Sports sedan rules mean I can run the car as is versus say production where I’d have to change a lot – mostly robbing the car of power. So, NSW Sports Sedans Championship 2015 Round 1 SMSP…
Saturday I picked up a set of Hankook wets from the boys in Gary’s truck on site. Come qualifying though, it wasn’t raining so I left the R-spec Hankook Z221 on. Sitting on the dummy grid it began to sprinkle, then rain as the cars went on track. As I edged my way around a couple cars went off on slicks and the session was red flagged. Queued up in the pits without time to fit the wets I notice ol’ Jim Hunter (of suspension fame) having wets bolted to his WRX. Jim is the man to beat in my division. On wets he qualified in P12 well above me in P17…
Race 1 started in the rain and I had the new wets on. Man what a difference! After scrubbing them as best I could on the warm up I got a great start and passed 8 cars into T1. The Div 1 cars were a handful in this weather, most probably running old wets they’ve had on the trailer for years. I picked up two more spots basically diving under brakes where they couldn’t and finished in 7th out of 13 that finished from a field of 20!
Sunday and the rain held off at the Creek all day. Starting in Race 2 I was the pigeon amongst the cats. On the grid I can’t hear my car idle for the noise these monsters make. I got a good start and passed a few into T1 but this time they picked me up by T2. A couple more monsters slipped passed me (that had DNF’d in R1) and I settled into 10th behind Stuart Inwood in his GTR. Our times were very similar and unless he made a mistake I didn’t feel like betting the farm on one more place, so 10th it was.
Race 3 from P10, again with the launch power of the Evo I picked up maybe three spots. From there it’s watch the mirrors as guys pass inside and out at T2. Again I had Inwood to catch, this time he let me by and I finished 8th behind Darren Renouf in his ex-Perkins VX supercar. Thing I noticed tailing him is how much corner speed the Evo carries – it’s near as quick as a supercar the same age. It’s only on the straight where the big horsepower difference flushes out. Anyway, I had fun tailing the supercar for all I was worth and exploring the limits of my little cars grip. I managed a 1:42 in the last race which is a couple seconds off my PB in ideal supersprint conditions but I was happy with that.
I won my division and am leading the championship – of course it’s early days.