Foster/Reid Audi wins action-packed Carter’s Tyres South Island Endurance Series opener
Current NZ Endurance Champions Neil Foster and Jonny Reid have continued on their winning way taking victory in the opening Three Hour race of the 2019 Carter’s Tyres South Island Endurance Series. The opening round held at Teretonga Park in Southland proved to be a thriller with the lead changing a number of times. Second home was the Audi R8 GT3 Evo driven by Dale Chapman/Marc Doran/Andrew Waite with the Anthony Leighs/Paul Kelly Porsche 911 Cup car in third.
Foster, also the current South Island Three Hour champion, and Reid (Audi R8 LMS), set the fastest time in qualifying ahead of the very quick Aston Martin Vantage GT3 of Tony Quinn and Damon Leitch. However, it was the Aston Martin that took the race lead right from the start. Within the first hour top contenders George McFarlane/Jack Milligan (Porsche 997 GT3R) retired with a broken wheel bearing while the Chev Camaro GT3 of John McIntyre/Simon Gilbertson dropped down the field from second position, having pitted with a broken radiator hose clamp.
The second hour had no less drama amongst the remaining top contenders. While the Chapman/Doran/Waite Audi took the lead from the Quinn/Leitch Aston, first the awesome sounding BMW Z4 GT3 of Marco Schelp/Matt Hamilton appeared to drop a cylinder on the main straight which dumped oil on the rear tyres. A resulting fire in the engine bay curtailed their afternoon bringing out the safety car. Eventually the race was red flagged when the brand-new Porsche 991 GT3 of Scott O’Donnell/Allan Dippie appeared to clip a slower car resulting in the Porsche spinning and hitting the bank at turn 2, causing some serious damage.
The race was stopped for some time and once it got underway again it was the Foster/Reid Audi that took the lead heading into the final hour. The Chapman/Doran/Waite Audi held second ahead of the Leighs/Kelly Porsche with Ben Byers/Christina Orr-West (Audi R8 LMS Ultra) fourth. These four would hold station through to the checked flag. With less than 40 minutes remaining, the Aston Martin retired with a broken gear box, allowing the McIntyre/Gilbertson Camaro to take a hard-earned fifth, having clawed their way back from a lengthy pitstop.
Twenty-seven cars took to the grid to contest the overall result as well as five different class titles.
Arron Black/Stuart Black (BMW E46 WTCC) were first home in Class A (0-2000cc), Rhys Gould/Gene Rollinson (Hyundai i30N TCR) won Class B (2001-3500cc) and finished sixth overall, Perry Scarfe/Grant Silvester (Ford Falcon BA) won Class C (3501cc +), Paul Kelly/Anthony Leighs (Porsche 911 Cup) won Class D and the Foster/Reid Audi R8 LMS Ultra won Class E.
In a fortnight’s time teams and drivers will head to the second round at the Highlands Motorsport Park in Cromwell, 5 October 2019.
#1 Overall Three Hour and Class E winners Neil Foster/Jonny Reid Audi R8 LMS Ultra
The start of the Three Hour Race
#5 Rhys Gould/Gene Rollinson (Hyundai i30N TCR) won Class B (2001-3500cc)
#118 Perry Scarfe/Grant Silvester (Ford Falcon BA) won Class C (3501cc +) alongside #50 Arron Black/Stuart Black (BMW E46 WTCC) who were first home in Class A (0-2000cc),
#123 Paul Kelly/Anthony Leighs (Porsche 911 Cup) won Class D
Please credit: Euan Cameron Photography
Three Hour Race Results
Position, Drivers, Class, Car
1 Neil Foster/Jonny Reid E Audi R8 LMS
2 Dale Chapman/Marc Doran/Andrew Waite E Audi R8 GT3 Evo
3 Paul Kelly/Anthony Leighs D Porsche 991 Cup
4 Ben Byers/Christina Orr-West Audi R8 LMS Ultra
5 Simon Gilbertson/John McIntyre E Chevrolet Camaro GT3
6 Rhys Gould/Gene Rollinson B Hyundai i30N TCR
7 Dwayne Carter/Matt Carter E Mercedes SLS
8 Barry Moore/Tim Mackersy B Volkswagon Golf GTI TCR
9 Graeme Rhodes /Paul Rickerby D Ford V8 Supertourer
10 Arron Black/Stuart Black A BMW E46 WTC
11 David Rogers/Brian Green B Mitsubishi Evo X RS
12 Grant Askew/Cole Askew B Seat Leon Supercopa
13 Jared Pyke/Ben McConochie Mazda RX8
14 Terence Phillips/Darryl Phillips A Honda Civic
15 Todd Foster Connor Adams A Toyota 86
16 Mark Taylor/Vaughan Moloney A Honda Integra DC2
17 Grant Moore/Matt Moore/Phil Schumacher A Toyota Altezza
18 Rodney Parkes/Michael Parkes A Honda S2000
19 Perry Scarfe/Grant Silvester Ford BA Falcon
20 Grant Williams/Ben Williams/Rick Matheson C Mazda RX8
21 Tim Stanton/Leyton Tremain A Peugot 106 Rallye
DNF George McFarlane/Jack Milligan E Porsche GT3 R
DNF Marco Schelp/Matt Hamilton E BMW Z4 GT3
DNF Tony Quinn/Damon Leitch E Aston Martin GT3
DNF Victor Cattermole/Richard Simpson Mercedes 190e
DNF Ron Mackersy/Warren Good B Seat Leon TCR
DNF Scott O’Donnell/Allan Dippie D Porsche 991 GT3 R
DNS Ben Coffin/Sam Bushell C Mazda RX7
2019 Carter’s Tyres South Island Endurance Series Calendar
Rnd 1, 21 September 2019 – Teretonga Park, Invercargill
Rnd 2, 5 October 2019 – Highlands Motorsport Park, Cromwell
Rnd 3, 19 October 2019 – Timaru International Raceway, Timaru
Rnd 4, 2 November 2019 – Mike Pero Motorsport Park, Ruapuna, Christchurch
Prepared by Sunday Business Networks Ltd on behalf of SIERDC.