Round 5, 2014

//ROUND 5 

NSW CHAMPIONSHIP

WAKEFIELD PARK

 

//15th-17th August

What a great weekend! My best results so far!

We made our way to Goulburn’s Wakefield Park Raceway which had some pretty crazy weather conditions in store for us.

We were able to walk away on Friday smiles on our faces. I was able to beat my best time around the circuit multiple times. Oil on the track in the afternoon meant we were all a bit off the pace compared to the morning but some positive steps forward with the car setup meant we were keen for Qualifying.

Qualifying.  Second place! I put the car on the FRONT ROW! The highest I’ve qualified and also locking out the front row for the team.

Race One. Seventeen laps. I had a solid start off the line and managed to pull a good gap early to separate myself from the cars behind. Then I focused on the areas we knew I could improve on. When the chequered flag fell I had my BEST finish – second place. It was also fantastic to get a one two finish for the team.

Race Two. Ten Laps. The rain began falling on Saturday night and didn’t let up. I held my position off the start and held onto the leader. Halfway round the first lap we had already pulled away from the rest of the field by a few seconds. I got a little eager coming out of Turn 6 trying to close in on first and that extra throttle was enough to spin the car around. I then had to wait for all the other cars to go by before it was safe to spin back around and get going. I pushed incredibly hard to close the gap and at one point was the quickest car out there. I closed right in on 5th but just missed out on making the overtake and crossed the line in 6th.

Race Three. 9 laps.  Incredibly wet with numerous rivers running across the track, excellent conditions for aquaplaning! I started from 6th, had a great launch and went for the small gap between the pit wall and another car. A huge amount of standing water nearly pulled the car into the wall but I escaped and got myself up to 3rd by Turn 1. To watch the start click here. The conditions were extremely tricky and caught many of the drivers out. Next time round I moved into second place and even with plenty of pressure from the cars behind I held onto the position. Another SECOND PLACE finish and one step further up on the PODIUM!

Hugh, Tim and the Anglo Australian Motorsport Team helped me improve all weekend and it was a great feeling to return to the pits with an excellent result. Unfortunately there was no time for celebratory photos afterwards as everyone was drenched and wanted to escape the horrible conditions. I can’t thank my girlfriend enough for being there the whole time through the freezing cold and heavy rain to support me. Thank you to all my friends and family for the support. I really appreciate the support from everyone.

Only one more round to go!                               

The photos from the weekend will be coming soon.

Round 4, 2014

//ROUND 4 

NSW CHAMPIONSHIP

SYDNEY MOTORSPORT PARK

 

//25th-27th July

A tough weekend made sweeter by a podium finish!  We returned to the 3.9km GP Circuit at Sydney Motorsport Park looking to make a few spots back in the championship.

Friday began with unexpected rain that stayed with us for the first two sessions. Sliding sideways on the run down to the hairpin with only the concrete wall to look at wasn’t on the day’s agenda but I avoided contact and continued on. The track dried out for the afternoon and we worked on a few key areas. Unfortunately we didn’t come away with the results we aimed for and I left the track feeling pretty disheartened.

Qualifying.  Six laps with rain creating ever changing conditions. It came down heavier than it had during Friday Practice but I still managed to go faster.  A TWO SECOND improvement on the last lap compared to two laps earlier moved me into 3rd place.

Race One. Thirteen laps. Half an hour of racing. I challenged for 2nd before ending up on the outside through Turn 2 and off the dry line. The wet track offline meant no drive out of the corner and I found myself back in 4th. The fight was then on for 4th and 5th and after some close racing I managed to get back in front and pull away.

Race Two. Two Laps. A great launch meant a jump from 4th to 2nd at the start. I dropped to third but there was no chance to fight back after the safety car came out for the remainder of the race. A driver made heavy contact with the wall but thankfully was able to walk away.

Race Three. 9 laps.  Another good start got me from 3rd to 2nd. I had to work hard to hold on to it but on lap 7 his slip stream was too much and he got the jump. A lap later we approached some traffic going into Turn 1. I was on the outside and we went three cars wide through one of the fastest corners in Australia. There wasn’t a lot of grip out there but I made the pass stick. We then fought it out for the next eleven corners and CROSSED THE LINE SIDE BY SIDE. It was so close that nobody knew the outcome until the official timing results were out. I finished 3rd, 0.02 of a second was all that separated us - literally centimetres apart. Another Trophy Race PODIUM FINISH! Second sure would have been great but I’ve got to be happy with a result that had seemed out of reach when I left the track on Friday.

The Anglo Australian Motorsport Team have done a fantastic job and I can’t thank them enough for their dedication and help especially Hugh, my engineer. Thank you to my friends and family who didn’t let the rain deter them from coming out and cheering me on. Loving the support!!                   

Click here to check out the photos from Round 4.

Round 4, Pre-Race

//ROUND 4

PRE-RACE

 

A big weekend of racing is almost here! We’ll be at Sydney Motorsport Park from the 25th – 27th July for Round 4 of the NSW Formula Ford Championship. This will be our last race at the iconic 3.9km GP Circuit before heading to Goulburn for the final two rounds.

I’ll be doing everything I can to continue improving on the track. A good haul of points will help me extend my lead in the Rookie of the Year Championship. They’ll also be crucial to help me work my way back up the Driver’s Championship ladder after a DNF at Round 3 dropped me from 2nd to 4th.

You can catch all the action for FREE on Friday and Saturday and entry is only $15 for anyone over 12 on Sunday. Tickets can be purchased at the gates.

Friday, 25th July
Practice – Multiple Sessions

Saturday, 26th July
Qualifying – 9:30AM
Race One – 12:15PM

Sunday, 27th July
Race Two – 9:00AM
Race Three - 1:25PM

See you there!

Check out the Sydney Motorsport Park website for visitor information.

Parkinson's NSW Unity Walk And Run

//SUPPORTING

PARKINSON’S NSW

UNITY WALK AND RUN

 

//15th July
 

The 2014 Parkinson's NSW Unity Walk and Run will take place on Sunday 31st August. In 2012 I competed in the 8km Unity Run to help raise much needed funding for Parkinson’s NSW. I’m delighted to once again be involved with such a fantastic event - but this time I’m doing it a little differently – as a supporting partner!

I’m giving the highest individual fundraiser a 10 lap Formula Ford racing experience at Sydney Motorsport Park.

I’ll have my 2008 K-08 Spirit race car on display as well as one of the Formula Fords used for the experience days. You can catch them at Cathy Freeman Park, Sydney Olympic Park – only metres away from ANZ Stadium.  

If you’d like to make a donation to Parkinson’s NSW click here. Better yet, maybe you’d like to compete in one of the events and help fundraise. There really is opportunity for everybody to get involved with a 4km walk, 4km run, 8km run and 8km wheelchair race. Even your dog can compete with you! For more information on the event visit www.unitywalkandrun.com.au

All the money raised goes towards providing vital care and support services for people living with Parkinson’s disease as well as their families and carers.

Sydney Sports and Exercise Physiology

//SYDNEY SPORTS AND 

EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY

//5th July

It gives me great pleasure to announce Sydney Sports and Exercise Physiology as a sponsor! 

My strength and conditioning has been in their hands since the beginning of 2013. The programs have been fantastic and my fitness, especially neck strength, went to a new level. In fact, it's thanks to their training that I walked away from the crash without any severe injuries. 

SSEP has taken care of my recovery process and will ensure that I will be the fittest driver lining up on the grid. Check them out at www.ssep.com.au

Round 3, 2014

//ROUND 3 

NSW CHAMPIONSHIP

SYDNEY MOTORSPORT PARK

 

//20th-22nd June

This week has felt like I was riding a roller coaster!

Another first for me, racing on the shorter 3.9km GP Circuit at SMSP and keen to pick up from where we left off last round.

The first few sessions on Friday were all about seeing what my body could tolerate after a heavy crash (click here for video) four days earlier as well as building confidence again. It sounds cliché but you really need to become one with the car, it’s a relationship you develop. A mechanical failure that sends you into the wall at high speed hurts the relationship a little. Your brain tells you you’re crazy for ever getting back into the car but your heart is begging to keep going.

Qualifying.  Eight laps to set a quick lap, ideally before the pain would start creeping in.  A new PERSONAL BEST for the GP circuit and we found TWO WHOLE SECONDS overnight! We would be starting the first race from 5th place.

Now for the racing.
Race One. Seven laps and a three-way war for track position. I made the first pass early in the race and then had to find a way passed 3rd whilst defending from the attacks of the car behind. By lap five I’d made my move and was in THIRD PLACE., I kept pushing, wanting to get far enough in front to prevent them from getting in my slip stream. A partial spin on the second last lap cost me those two spots and I was the fifth car to cross the line.

Race Two. TWO CORNERS. Yes, that’s right, it was only a two corner race for me. My FIRST EVER START IN THE WET WAS GREAT, I was up to 4th by Turn One and only metres behind the car in front. As I exited the second corner I felt something hit my left rear which spun the car around. Once I was back on track it was clear she had been damaged, I limped back to pit lane hoping for a quick fix but there was too much damage.

Race Three. 10 laps. 21 minutes to fight my way through from the last row of the grid due to the DNF. Making the most of every opportunity meant FIVE PLACES IN 1 LAP. Picking off another car in the second lap moved me up to 5th. In lap 5 I set a new PERSONAL BEST around the circuit and continued closing the gap to the cars in front. The muscle spasms in my back started spreading into my shoulders making it impossible to maintain that pace. Even so, I still managed to cross the line in FIFTH POSITION! A fantastic result when racing seemed to be off the cards at the beginning of the week.

Thank you to the incredible team at Anglo Australian Motorsport, especially Tim for getting the car ready after Monday’s disaster and Aaron and Henry for your help and guidance all weekend. Thank you to all my friends and family who came out to cheer me on. Your support was incredible!

The photos of the weekend's action can be seen here.

 

A Wall To Remember

//A WALL TO

REMEMBER

//16th June

They say a picture tells a thousand words. This one shows you the very sudden and unexpected end to what had been a day of great progress. 

By the early afternoon we had already chalked up eight sessions and over 100 laps. But that’s when disaster struck!

I was only a couple of laps into what would ultimately be our last session. I approached the second last corner of the race track, a high speed right handed kink.

Step one, lifting off the throttle to get some weight shifting to the front. Step two, start turning. Only one problem though. This time round, the car wouldn’t turn in. The throttle had stayed open and the car continued accelerating. There were only a few metres of track left…

Jumping on the brakes managed to wipe off a bit of speed but I was still travelling over a 100km/h when the tyres met with the grass. Unfortunately, the grass was more like ice from all the rain leading up to the day. I was rapidly closing in on a wall that up until that point I’d never really even noticed. I had to give up on getting her to change direction a metre or so before impact and let go of the steering wheel to avoid broken arms or wrists.

Watching her being dragged away from the wall with only days before the race meeting seemed like it was all over.

No broken bones but plenty of tissue damage to my upper back, neck and shoulders, a bruised tailbone and cuts from the harness showing just how much force my body had been put through. My injuries could have been a lot worse if it wasn’t for all the strength training with Dean McNamara from Sydney Sports Medicine Centre.

Incredibly, thanks to a huge amount of effort by Tim Beale and the Anglo Australian Motorsport Team, we would be ready to race another day!

To watch the onboard footage click here

 

Round 3 Timetable

// ROUND 3

TIMETABLE

Entry is FREE for Friday and Saturday! Tickets for Sunday can be purchased on the day at the gates and is $15 for anyone over 12.

Friday, 20th June
Practice - Multiple Sessions

Saturday, 21st June
Qualifying - 10:10AM
Race One - 2:00PM

Sunday, 22nd June
Race Two - 10:35AM
Race Three - 2:25PM

Click here for the visitor information on Sydney Motorsport Park.

One Week Until Round 3

// ONE WEEK UNTIL

ROUND 3

Round 3 of the NSW Formula Ford Championship is closing in quickly!! 

Sydney Motorsport Park will showcase the action from the 20th to the 22nd of June. Practice will kick off on Friday on the 3.9km GP Circuit.  Qualifying and Race 1 on Saturday and Race 2 and 3 on Sunday. The timetable will be coming soon!

Entry is FREE on Friday and Saturday and is $15 for anyone over 12 on Sunday. 
Tickets can be purchased at the gates. 

Looking forward to seeing you all there!

For more info on the track check out their Visitor Information page here http://www.sydneymotorsportpark.com.au/visitor-information 

Round 2, Sydney Motorsport Park

//ROUND 2 

NSW CHAMPIONSHIP

SMSP

 

//16th-18th May

What an action packed, fun filled race weekend,  for my very first time racing on the extended 4.5km Brabham Circuit at Sydney Motorsport Park.

With only one test day under my belt, my team & I knew it was going to be crucial to make the most out of the four sessions on Friday Practice. We needed to learn all of the 18 corners of the track.

All the hours of practice, preparation and analysing came into play on Saturday morning. Qualifying. Three laps. Three laps to not only hit pace but set the fastest time I possibly could.  AND WE DID IT! Hitting a personal best! I have to say, I did have to double take when I crossed the finish line & glanced at the lap time on the dash. TWO AND A HALF SECONDS… two and a half seconds we found overnight.  3rd place on the grid was all mine (A giant step from qualifying 7th in round 1 at Wakefield Park).

It was time to put this qualifying position to work.
Race One. 11 laps. 27 minutes of jam packed, non-stop racing action.
Holding onto 3rd place the entire race meant I was able to work on improving every one of the 18 turns to put me ahead in the races to follow.

If I had it easy on Saturday, Sunday was about to blow my mind.
Race Two. Four Lap sprint to the finish line. New personal best, although there was not a second where the pressure was off to defend 3rd place.

The best was definitely saved for last.
Race Three. 7 laps. From  3rd  to 4th, then 4th back to 3rd, and then up to 2nd and back to 3rd.
The heat was on, in the most exciting race of my life! It was a race filled with fights for track position and ended with a dash for the finish line. Exiting Turn 18, with second place in our sights. A nose was all it took. I finished 3rd, 0.1 seconds behind 2nd place. But WHAT A RACE!

PODIUM FINISH! My very first podium for Formula Ford in only my 3rd ever race, and my very first race at SMSP. Ecstatic doesn’t even begin to describe how I was feeling.

I'm in 2nd place for the Formula Ford 1600 Driver’s Championship and have extended my lead in the Rookie of the Year Championship.

Thank you to the incredible team at Anglo Australian Motorsport, especially Hugh for his dedication to my improvement and making me the best driver I can possibly be.

Thank you to everyone who came out to support me over the weekend, for cheering me on and giving me words of encouragement.

Congratulations to my team mate Kane Coleman on Pole Position and winning all three races.

BRING ON ROUND 3!!
20-22nd June at SMSP
More details to come

Check out the photos from the weekend here.

 

 

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