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Supaloc Racing Go From Hero to Zero and Back Again

Oct 8

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Saturday, October 08, 2011 7:22 PM  RssIcon

 

Kevin Weeks has gone from hero to zero and back to hero again after two enthralling half-hour races in Round 6 of the Australian GT Championship at Mount Panorama today.
 
Race 1 was held on a very damp track, and Weeks and the Supaloc team gambled on slick tyres for the race, predicting that the circuit would dry out.
 
Weeks made a brilliant start, moving up to third by Turn 1. Unfortunately, the track was still too wet for slick tyres and Weeks slipped back to fifth.
 
The safety-car was deployed when Greg Crick and Peter Boylan crashed at the top of the mountain, and when the race restarted on Lap 4, the track was still extremely damp. Weeks found himself battling to stay ahead of the Dodge Viper of Ian Palmer, and slipped off the track at Murray’s Corner, becoming bogged in the gravel trap.
 
“We threw the dice in that race,” Weeks said. “The car was reasonable, but the track was wetter down the bottom than it was over the top. I managed to get a margin over the other drivers who were on slicks and I was starting to feel confident, but there was some standing water on the track at Murray’s Corner, which caught me out.
 
“There actually wasn’t too much damage to the car, but I took the precaution of bringing it into the pits because I was a lap down anyway.”
 
While the gamble from Weeks and the Supaloc team may have proven an error in Race 1, exactly the same strategy was adopted in Race 2 and this time it proved a masterstroke, with the track drying enough over the course of the race to hand a massive advantage to those drivers on slicks.
 
Despite starting at the rear of the field, Weeks was gifted a number of positions before the race even commenced, with a number of drivers electing to change to slick tyres in pit lane and therefore being forced to start the race from the pits. These drivers included Mark Eddy and Klark Quinn.
 
At the start, Weeks immediately moved up to second behind the wet tyre-shod Mercedes of Peter Hackett. After two laps, it was clear that slick tyres were the way to go and Kevin overtook Hackett for the lead at Hell Corner and set about establishing a margin over the rest of the field.
 
Within a few laps, Weeks held a commanding lead, but unfortunately the first of the pit-lane starters, Mark Eddy, was lapping much more quickly, and he overtook Weeks on Lap 7.
 
Weeks then battled ferociously with Klark Quinn, holding out the Mosler until the very final lap, when Quinn overtook him with an aggressive move into The Cutting. He still finished the race in a commendable third position.
 
“Klark was much faster than I was, and he deserved second place,” Weeks said. “I was happy that I was able to keep him out for as long as I did.
 
“Unlike the first race, our strategy in that race was absolutely perfect, but unfortunately we just didn’t have the pace of Eddy or Quinn.
 
“We were using a wet setup, and we had some slightly older tyres on the rear, so the car wasn’t ideal. Overall though, I’m still very happy to finish where I did, and it was a great battle with Klark.”

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