North Island Endurance Championship R1 RACE REPORT:
Trass family Motorsport descended on Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park in Taupo this month for the first of three rounds in the North Island Endurance Championship.
In one of the strangest racing weekends in NZ Motorsport history, TFM dealt well with unexpected, extraordinary weather conditions (immense fog). Bringing all three driver teams home to finish their three and one hour races with Top 5 results, the team maintains a positive mindset moving into Round Two next weekend at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park.
Excerpt below from Velocity News NZ (click link to view more):
One Hour NIES Race:
"GT3 pilots David O'Leary (Chevrolet Corvette C6R) and Glen Chappel (TFM Ferrari F430 GT3) had their own race-long battle. The pair had been third and fourth early in the race, only for O'Connor and Andrew to sneak past them in pit lane. O'Leary initially held the upper hand, but lost the position to Chappel during the pit cycle.
The battle for second was the one to watch in the closing minutes. After a relatively quiet start, fresh Trass Family Motorsport recruit Elliot Andrew vaulted to second in his Ferrari F430 Challenge, ahead of Martini Porsche driver Kevin Etches and 458 Challenge driver Tim O'Connor."
Three Hour NIES Race:
"Trass Family Motorsport's Sam Fillmore and Danny Stutterd qualified third in the team's leading Ferrari 458 GT3, ahead of reigning NZ Touring Car Championship (NZTC) winner Simon Evans and Gene Rollinson in their Smeg Racing Commodore.
The three hour race commenced with an unprecedented 2 hour and 28 minute caution period, as the thick low-hanging fog that covered the entire circuit was deemed too dangerous by officials to compete in. The safety-car period was so long that officials had to cycle through two different safety cars during the time.
The race under safety car became a battle of losing the least amount of time relative to rivals in the pits.
For chief rivals Trass Family Motorsport and International Motorsport, their later pit stops buried them in the field among the traffic. With 32 minutes left in the race, the fog cleared sufficiently enough that officials declared the track safe to compete on. The cars in third and fourth place had also changed, as Jonny Reid and Trass Family Motorsport scythed through the field."
Three Hour Enduro Results:
1. John McIntyre/Simon Gilbertson (SaReNi Camaro GT3)
2. Simon Evans/Gene Rollinson (Holden Commodore NZ SuperTourer)
3. Jonny Reid/Neil Foster (Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT3)
4. Sam Fillmore/Danny Stutterd (Ferrari 458 GT3)
5. Glenn Smith/John De Veth (SaReNi Camaro GT3)
6. Tim O'Connor/Craig Innes (Ferrari 458 Challenge)
7. Lance Hughes/Andre Heimgartner (Holden Commodore TLX)
8. Callum Quin/John Penny (Holden Commodore NZ SuperTourer)
9. James Urquhart/Brett Rudd (Holden Commodore NZ SuperTourer)
10. David Dovey/Matt Dovey (Ford Falcon)
One Hour Enduro Results:
1. Mat Whittaker (Porsche 991 Carrera Cup
2. Tim O'Connor (Ferrari 458 Challenge)
3. Kevin Etches (Porsche 997 Carrera Cup)
4. Elliot Andrew (Ferrari F430 Challenge)
5. Glen Chappel (Ferrari F430 GT3)
6. David O'Leary (Corvette C6R)
7. Paul Verryt (Holden NZ SuperTourer)
8. Rick Cooper (Ford Mustang)
9. Oliver Heycoop (Honda Civic)
10. Barry Kirk-Burnnand (BMW 135i)
For video coverage of the weekend's action visit theFASTfiles.com
Upcoming 2016 race events:
North Is Endurance Series R2 - Hampton Downs Motorsport Park (Waikato) 25 June
North Is Endurance Series R3 - Manfield Raceway (Fielding) July 23
South Is Endurance Series R1 - Teretonga Park (Invercargill) 10 September
South Is Endurance Series R2 - Ruapuna Park (Christchurch) 1 October
South Is Endurance Series R3 - Levels Raceway (Timaru) 15 October
Hampton Downs 101 - Hampton Downs Motorsport Park (Waikato) 28-30 October
Highlands 101 - Highlands Motorsport Park (Cromwell) 12/13 November