The 944 Challenge drivers hit the track in a few days as part of a special invitation to join in with Round 5 of the Shannons Nationals series. Here is a preview for this event which is being proudly presented by aPorschapart, which will see the Dennis O’Keefe Cup presented to the round winner. With no points on the line for this round, to mix things up – the race format will include a reverse grid Race 2, with a handicap Race 3 to give all drivers a great chance of taking home the top prize for the weekend!
With free entry for the weekend, make sure you head down to view all the action! Or for those that can’t make it down, make sure you tune into the Shannons Nationals Livestream on Sunday for all the action! Saturdays qualifying session starts at 9:50, with Race 1 at 12:55 that day. Sundays Reverse grid race is at 10:40am, with the Handicap race finale at 13:35. Below is a list of those competing this weekend:
#28 Tony Westaway – Tony is making his first outing in 2018 after handing the keys over to son Jamie for an assault on the 2018 series championship – Tony will be looking to refamiliarize himself with his championship leading car for the weekend and look to take home some silverware!
#1 Cameron Beller – Cam made an uncharacteristic mistake last time out at Winton, but redeemed himself with a victory in the final race. He will be looking to avoid dramas this weekend and to make up for that indiscretion with some race victories this round.
#74 Mark Taubitz – Mark had a great run at the Winton round earning a trio of podium finishes to strengthen his third position in the points. Can he keep that momentum going on his return to Winton and improve on those race results?
#64 Keith Marriner – Keith is another who had his best result to date at Winton, with three consistent finishes to earn him third outright for the round. He will be hoping he can improve on this result this weekend!
#37 Chris Lewis-Williams – Dusting off the cobwebs on his 944 racer, Chris has been lured out of his season sabbatical to join the field for this event. No doubt he will have lost none of his speed and will be around the top of the time sheets come qualifying, and get an opportunity to brush up on his overtaking skills in Sundays races!
#16 Paul Crocitti – Paul makes a welcome return to the track for the first time in 2018 after repairing his car after his final race crash in the wet at Island Magic in 2017. Paul has great form at Winton with a Winton 300 victory and numerous top 5 results – and will have a great opportunity to record even better 944 Challenge results this weekend.
#53 Peter Doherty – Peter returns to the track for the second time this season after missing the previous round at Winton and Sandown, and will be another who will enjoy the mix up of the race format and will be aiming to spend some time at the front of the field this weekend!
#46 Jim Mitchell – Jim showed off his race start skills last time out at Winton and if he can replicate those this weekend, he stands an excellent chance of being at the pointy end of the field at the end of the weekends racing.
#45 Michael Westaway – Michael also showed good speed at Winton despite a race 1 spin was on track for a great weekend with a 4th and 3rd place finishes in races 1 & 2 before his car came to a halt on the warm up lap for Race 3. He will be in with a strong chance of being up front all weekend at a track he traditionally has shown some standout performances at.
#8 Dick Howe – Dick missed the Winton Points round in June, but will be back for this round and will look to continue the strong weekend he had at Sandown with a third place finish outright for the round.
#10 Manny Mezzasalma – A welcome addition to the 944 Challenge field, Manny joins the 944 grid in the newly acquired ex Danny Stutterd car he will share driving duties of with Adam Brewer. WIth plenty of Porsche experience, Manny could provide a surprise this weekend!
#98 Pedr James – Pedr was one of a few drivers who came unstuck at Winton at the very slippery Turn 2 area on Friday practice and having burnt the midnight oil to get his car repaired in time for Sandown this weekend where he had a career best result for the round and final race with fifth place. Pedr stands a strong chance to improve on that best result this weekend.
#97 Rob Holding – Rob makes his debut race event at Winton this weekend so will be a bit of an unknown quantity at the track, but after a strong showing at his last round at Sandown Round 1 where he ran in a strong fifth place before a gear linkage disconnected, he stands every chance of improving on his career best result of fifth position last year at Sandown.
The weather at this point looks to be a mixed bag with rain forecast for Saturday, but dry weather for Sunday – which could really mix things up even more! Come on down!