21 May 2012

NEALE MUSTON has picked up right where he left off in the 2012 Radical Australia Cup. The Sydneysider won the opening round of the 2012 title race but missed the second round held two weeks ago at Phillip Island. However, on his return to Sydney’s Eastern Creek at the weekend it was as if he never went away. Muston dominated round three of the 2012 RAC, taking pole position and winning all three races in relatively comfortable fashion.

The Excalibur Racing Radical SR3 Cup Car driver took pole by more than seven-tenths of a second and went on to take the two preliminary, 12-lap sprint races on Saturday; taking race one ahead of Ed Singleton and Daniel Reinhardt; the second over Glyn Edis and Richard Bloomfield.

In Sunday’s 50-minute enduro he escaped to an early lead before pitting earlier than a lot of his rivals. For a while it looked as if round two victor Tony Palmer would build a big enough overlap before making his stop, however the margin wasn’t enough. Even a brief, two-lap safety car interlude couldn’t stop Muston sweeping through to record a dominant win, his second of the year.

Impressively, Muston also came within one-tenth of the class lap record at Eastern Creek, with his 1:29.65s lap in the enduro not far from the quickest ever recorded. “It was a good weekend and everything went pretty well. We had a good fast track and I think everyone’s times were lower overall,” Muston explained. “We knocked out a couple of good laps and I was able to get into the 1:28s in qualifying which I have been aiming to do for a long time. The races were about getting out in front early and driving as quickly as I could."

“From driving the Porsche recently I’m comfortable on cold tyres and that’s where the advantage came. This place (Eastern Creek) is a bit like my backyard and I feel very comfortable there.”

Despite taking the 2012 season ‘one round at a time’, Muston said he is likely to return to continue his rise up the standings at the next round, also at Eastern Creek. “We have been running one round at a time, but given the way it’s been going and the fact there are two more rounds at Eastern Creek I’ve been talking to the ‘leader of the opposition’ at home to see if I give it a crack!”

Radical Events driver and Phillip Island winner Tony Palmer was second, continuing his strong recent performances and elevating him to a clear title lead – if only by one point - as well. Palmer’s strong performance in the enduro had him in a position to potentially steal the win from Muston in the pit stop shuffle – however the additional 12 seconds of pit stop time required, thanks to his win at Phillip Island, was enough to ensure he remained in second place.

Former joint-title leader Glyn Edis finished third and maintained his strong position in the championship, finishing just 0.5 seconds behind Palmer at the line. Behind the top three, Simon Haggarty and Ed Singleton completed the top five, Nick Stavropoulos, Richard Bloomfield, Peter Johnston, Richard Kimber and Tony Haggarty completing the top ten.

A strong field of 21 cars took the start at Eastern Creek and after some drama at Phillip Island, presented a clean weekend of racing as part of the Sports Car festival held at the home of Radical Australia.

The only safety car intervention came during the feature race following a lap 1 spin by Ed Singleton coming off the ultra-quick turn eight – behind Corporate hill. Radical Australia’s Greg Smith was several cars behind and was forced to take evasive action, spinning his car across the circuit and making light contact with the wall. 

Impressively, Smith’s Radical Australia crew executed a complete rear-wing assembly change in little more than 30-seconds to get him back in the race.

After a busy period of racing, the Radical Australia Cup teams and drivers get a well-deserved break with the next round set to see the RAC return to the Shannons Nationals program, at Eastern Creek, on July 13-15.

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1. Tony Palmer 171

2. Glyn Edis 170

3. Neale Muston 158

4. Ed Singleton 136

5. Simon Haggarty 130


1. Tony Haggarty 80

2. Andrew MacPherson 74

Article produced by Richard Craill - Race Torque Media on behalf of Radical Australia.

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