The Aussie Racing Cars are well known for pack racing, the unique cars, aptly named pocket rockets are often 3 or 4 wide at just about all the tracks they venture too. Next weekend’s Clipsal 500 is for the most part a wide circuit. Without a doubt it will need to be, for the first round of the 2016 series, 41 cars have been entered!
No other class this weekend or even all year long will field that many competitors and it’s a class field, a past champion in Klye Clews is returning joining the Rinkin Motorsport team in a Nissan Altima and he’s ready for more time at the front. And last year’s champ Brendon Pingel is excited to be defending his title. A number of teams have formed with 2 or 3 cars, there’s even a four car team all running Ford Mustangs, Western Sydney Motorsport are looking to elevate their lead contender Craig Woods the final round winner from 2015. Advantage Motorsport will have 5 cars on track too, one of their drivers Kerran Pridmore steps up from being a mechanic to a driver.
There are over a dozen rookies entered for this round, and there’s nothing like tackling a street circuit on your debut. After an absence from Clipsal last year due to the series’ first round in New Zealand the Clipsal fans have already been raving about the class returning this year.
“We had an amazing array of comments on our Facebook page when we published the calendar and Clipsal was again our first round, the public love the cars and racing and our teams love the circuit, I have know doubt we’ll put on a spectacular display once again” said Brad Ward the category manager.
The 2016 class welcomes a new female driver, Emma Clark will be piloting a Toyota Aurion and joins long time Aussie Racing Car campaigner Ruth Bowler. Again no other class can boast about having female drivers like the Aussie Racing Cars can. There are two other female drivers looking to join during the year.
Clipsal as an event prides itself as “the event that has it all”, and it really does, for instance the circuit is flowing in parts like a purpose built track and then turns into a concrete jungle with unforgiving walls, it’s so wide at some points you could put 10 Aussie cars across it and still not touch the walls (and truth be told some drivers try!) and then it becomes tight and twisty where if you are not in the single file you are going to have trouble getting around the corner. Our drivers and teams thrive on this event, it really sorts the men from the boys, and of course the girls.
Outside of the racing there is entertainment a plenty for the family, our pits are easily accessible to the public and again our drivers and teams love the ability to converse with the fans, they love showing off their cars, they love the interaction.
“Our pits are generally pretty busy but the drivers and the team members and families of course are always happy to chat about their cars, the racing and plenty more, we welcome visitors over the four days. The pits are in the park surrounded by trees, it’s probably the nicest looking pits we have all year long actually” said Ward.
The race weekend kicks of this coming Thursday, if you cannot get to the event you can keep up to date on Fox and 10, plus of course our website and Facebook page.