Prosser Breaks Through in RX8 Cup

New Zealand driver Aaron Prosser has broken through for his maiden race wins in the Mazda RX8 Cup Series season finale at the Winton Raceway AMRS round, after exciting wheel-to-wheel battles with series champion Ric Shaw in all four races.

Prosser, who previously competed in speedway and completed some RaceAway Track Time track days in preparation for his RX8 Cup campaign, qualified fourth despite never having visited the Winton circuit prior to the race meeting.

At the start of Race 1, Prosser jumped to the lead at Turn 3, taking advantage of some panel-rubbing between the leaders, and led all the way to the chequered flag.

In Race 2, Prosser was under pressure from Shaw for the entire eight-lap journey but was able to keep his rival at bay.

Shaw was able to find a way past Prosser for the win in Race 3, and in Race 4, the two cars raced door-to-door for the entire duration, swapping positions on a number of occasions before Shaw finally prevailed with a last-lap passing move to take the win.

Prosser ended the weekend level on points with Shaw, only missing the round win on a countback.

The other RaceAway-supported drivers also performed well; despite some gearbox glitches and an excursion in one of the races, Brayden Slater finished the weekend strongly with seventh in the weekend’s final race.

Following her Wakefield 301 Division D win the previous weekend, Maisie Place was back in her RX8 for her maiden Winton event, and improved her lap times by more than two seconds between qualifying and the weekend’s final race.

Wakefield 301 Win

Congratulations to Maisie Place and Phil Alexander, who drove their Mazda MX5 to first place in Division D in the Wakefield 301 endurance race on Sunday, 11 November.

Phil started the race and completed a long first stint, elevating the Mazda MX5 into the top 10 before Maisie climbed behind the wheel, and brought the car home in a sensational eighth place outright. As well as being a brilliant result for Maisie in her first endurance race, it was also Phil’s second division win in a 300km event at Wakefield Park.

RaceAway’s Pulsar squad also enjoyed a stellar weekend in the pair of one-hour endurance races; Josh Heath won the first race and finished fourth in the second race to secure the runner-up spot in the championship.

The first race was particularly impressive for the RaceAway drivers; also finishing in the top 10 were Tim/Anthony Colombrita (fifth), Greg Dufficy (sixth) and Mark Crutcher (ecstatic with 10th), while Chris Manning and Wil Foot were 11th.

If Mark was happy to finish 10th in Race 1, he could barely stop celebrating after improving to eighth in Race 2 – it was by far his strongest weekend in the category.

The RaceAway Track Time Hyundai Excel also made its competition debut in the Series X3 NSW category, with the two Lachlans, Gibbons and Mansell, sharing the driving duties.

After starting from the back of the grid due to some teething issues with fuel surge in Saturday qualifying and sprint races, Gibbons drove a storming opening stint, making up more than 10 places before handing the car over to Mansell during an early Safety Car. Mansell drove a marathon 70-minute stint to finish up 14th at the chequered flag.

Wakefield 301 is the Place to Be

RaceAway Track Time has announced its driver lineup for this weekend’s Wakefield 301 endurance race, 18-year-old Maisie Place joining the experienced Phil Alexander aboard the team’s Mazda MX5.

Place, a second-year apprentice mechanic from Moruya on the NSW South Coast, is in just her first season of racing, competing in the Mazda RX8 Cup which runs as part of the Australian Motor Racing Series (AMRS).

Having attended many of the Wakefield Park endurance races as a spectator, Place can’t wait to take her place (pun unintended) on the grid this weekend.

“I love the Wakefield 300, or 301 as it’s called this year, I’ve been coming to all of them since I was a kid,” Place said.

“It’s an event I’ve always dreamed of racing in, and I can’t wait to be part of it.”

Place has impressed many of her Mazda RX8 Cup rivals with her rapid improvements since her debut in the category, but she says the Wakefield 301 will be a whole new experience.

“In the Mazda RX8 Cup, all the cars are the same and the lap times are very close, but in the Wakefield 301 there are all different types of cars,” Place said.

“There will be quite a big variation in speed between the fast and slow cars, and our Mazda MX5 is somewhere in the middle. I’m going to have to deal with being lapped by faster cars, while lapping slower cars. It will be a good learning experience for me.

“It’s exciting to have Phil (Alexander) driving with me – Phil has done a lot of racing in some really big events like the Bathurst 1000 and Nurburgring 24 Hour, so I will be able to pick up a lot from his experience and advice.”

The Wakefield 301 action commences with free practice tomorrow (Friday), followed by official practice and qualifying on Saturday, and the 137 lap, 301 kilometre race on Sunday.

Commentator Confirms Racing Return

Motorsport commentator Lachlan Mansell will swap his microphone for a helmet when he joins the RaceAway Track Time team for the Series X3 NSW (Hyundai Excel Series) 150km endurance event, supporting the Australian Super Truck Championship race meeting at Wakefield Park this weekend.

The Goulburn resident’s voice is familiar at race tracks across the country; his role as the series commentator for the SuperUtes Series – one of the support categories for the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship – takes him to some of the biggest events on the calendar including the Adelaide 500, Sandown 500 and Bathurst 1000. He is also the live stream host for the Australian Motor Racing Series.

Closer to home, Mansell still commentates many state and national-level races at Wakefield Park. He also calls some events at Goulburn Speedway.

Mansell’s busy schedule means he doesn’t often get the chance to race himself, and he’s looking forward to being back behind the wheel.

“Commentating car racing has always been the thing I’ve loved most of all, and I was never really interested in becoming a driver until one of my friends, Emily Duggan, gave me a test in her Excel a couple of years ago,” Mansell said.

“I found that the experience of driving a race car enhanced my knowledge of the sport and allowed me to offer more insightful comments behind the microphone, so I’ve made it a goal to compete in at least one event per year since then.

“In 2016 I competed in the 24 Hours of Lemons endurance event for cars up to $1,000, and last year I did a Pulsar Series race at Wakefield. I’m looking forward to doing the Excel enduro – I like the strategic and team-work aspects of the long-distance races, and the Excel Series is a very affordable category where the cars are closely matched.”

Mansell’s co-driver will be reigning NSW Formula Ford Champion Lachlan Gibbons, a competitor who also has a wealth of experience in production car racing.

“I wanted Lachlan as my co-driver because he’s very good with driver coaching and feedback,” Mansell said.

“For someone with my relative lack of experience, it’s important for me to have someone to learn from – the only problem is it’s a bit confusing having two Lachlans in the team!”

Mansell also paid credit to the RaceAway Track Time operation, owned by veteran Phil Alexander.

“Phil has raced all over the world, and now he’s made a business out of giving people the opportunity for people to experience the thrill of motorsport,” Mansell said.

“For someone like myself who doesn’t have the time, infrastructure or mechanical expertise to own and prepare my own race car, it’s perfect. All I have to do is rock up at the track with my race suit and helmet, and enjoy the weekend.”