The penultimate round of 2018’s Combined Sports Car Association sprints saw a dedicated group of Club Lotus Australia sprinters head to Sydney Motorsport Park’s Amaroo (south) circuit on a threateningly grey day for some motorsport kindly hosted by the Sprite Car Club.
While the sky pretended to be very cross all day, no rain fell on the circuit and conditions were dry and good for both sprinters and drivers, 64 of which defied the atmospheric uncertainty and came out to play, including twelve from Club Lotus Australia. Said sprinters drove respectfully and neatly and the event was smoothly run by the Sprite team, giving everyone six runs before things wrapped up before 3PM.
Offering very little in the way of straightaways and plenty by way of corners and elevation change, Sydney Motorsport Park’s Amaroo circuit offers a challenging layout that’s well suited to lithe Lotuses. It’s also a great circuit to hone your skills, demanding excellent track positioning and car control to get the best out of it.
Duncan Andrews demonstrated both qualities, continuing to wring every last drop of performance out of his Exige S to finish as the fastest driver of the day with a 1:01.2.
Melanie Valdes had already set a personal best by the time she returned to the paddock after her first session, continuing her impressive progression throughout the season and finishing the day with a 1:07.5 – the fastest marque lady.
Leigh Fuller (1:02.5) had another good run in the Exige CR to bring it neatly home in second overall. Gino Valdes (1:03.9) continues to improve both on the track and in his fine tuning of the Exige, quietly narrowing the gap to the very pointy end on his way to fourth overall.
Peter and John Deller were our next fastest drivers and were split by just a tenth of a second at the end of the day, navigating their Commodores around the undulating layout in 1:03.9 and 1:04.08 respectively.
The 1:05s were packed, with Colin Rudd putting himself well inside the top 10 on 1:05.1, Greg Baker in the 3BM Nissan Pulsar GTiR doing a 1:05.2, James Kinghorn on a 1:05.3 in the S1 Elise and Terry Waugh steering the crowd-pulling R3 Renault Sport Spider around in 1:05.9.
Rex Hodder sadly only completed one timed lap on the day, with a lose through turn one pushing him back across the track to meet the inside wall. Rex was unhurt, but the rear shell of his Exige suffered some damage. Still, that one lap was a 1:06.2 – enough to put him in 16th overall and second DM2.
Your writer is sadly unable to update you on the shape of Steve’s boots after last round’s report, but I can report on a very tidily-steered 1:06.3 in the 2013 Elise S.
With six of the year’s seven rounds in the books, Club Lotus Australia leads the CSCA Club Championship by 126 points. The Jaguar club holds second place and is nipping on our heels – closer to the club than anyone has been in several years. We’ll need everyone’s support at Wakefield Park on the 21st of October to ensure that our winning streak continues!
Duncan Andrews and Jeff Breen from the Triumph Club each have a hand on the driver’s championship going in to the final round, sharing the lead on 72 points. It’s the same case in the ladies championship, with Mel Valdes and Eleanor Baigent sharing the lead going in to the final round. Eleanor’s lovely MG Midget took poorly at the end of round 6, so we hope that David Baigent is able to get it sorted in time for her to challenge Mel in the final round!
In DM4, the class in which most CLA drivers compete, Duncan holds the lead, but Leigh and Tim Mackie have him in their sights.
The next and final round of CSCA 2018 will be the Triumph Sports Owners Association round at Wakefield Park on the 21st of October. We hope to see you there!