RAC Round 4 SMSP Radical 250
16 July 2014

Round 4 of the Radical Australia Cup was held at Radicals home track and Headquarters, Sydney Motorsport Park.
The  17 car grid was greeted with clear blue skies after a chilly start to each day, a clear contrast to the wet and wild Phillip Island round last month for Round 3. The “Radical 250” format was again the feature for this event as it was in 2013 however this year only 2 teams decided to go with the Pro/Am driver format being Tim Berryman with Radical driver coach James Winslow and the Father and Son team of David and Trent white. Welcomed additions to the grid following a break are Radical SR3 drivers Nick Kelly, Michael Whiting, Aaron Lewis and David Crampton.

Some teams took maximum advantage attending the Radical Australia track day just on the Wednesday prior to the event to gain that valuable extra track time. There were a couple of notable absentees to Round 4 with John Corbett and Peter White unable to attend, Sue Hughes also sat this round out.

Friday Practice was cut short for teams due to a serious incident involving a production car at turn 1, the accident was serious enough to close the track for a number of hours, and the Radical Australia family wishes a speedy recovery for the young driver concerned. For the two short sessions on Friday it was Tim Berryman that topped the timesheets for P1 in the SR8 class and Nick Kelly in his SR3, regular runners Peter Paddon and Kim Burke were only fractions behind. Practice 2 was only 15 minutes long and the order was the same in SR8 class however the standout SR3 was Kim burke posting his personal best lap time of 1.29.69 much to his delight. The 20 minute practice on Saturday morning had a number of competitors who did not participate in the Friday sessions however it was again Tim Berryman that topped the SR8 times followed closely by 2013 Champion Neale Muston and then Greg Smith who was driving his “Martini inspired Livery, Young Care SR8" for the first time since acquiring the car last month. The SR8 battle was once again split by fractions of a second with Peter Paddon again leading the way from Kim Burke and Peter Johnson.

Saturday afternoon Qualifying was split into two sessions with the combined time setting the grid for race one, the outcome was mostly as the times reflected in the practice sessions with The SR8 cars of Tim Berryman and James Winslow on top followed by Neal Muston and Greg Smith. The SR3 class was again dominated by Peter Paddon followed closely by Kim Burke, Michael Shaw and Oliver Smith. James Winslow’s pole lap in the Berryman car of 1.25.62 was just a tenth under his 2013 race lap record. Winslow commented on the pace of Tim Berryman. “Tim has really stepped up a notch this weekend, he is working on the Data and coaching tips provided by the Radical Australia coaching team” James Winslow heads up a quality team of drivers for coaching that Includes Josh Hunt, Nathan Antunes and Karl Reindler.

Sunday was again under clear blue skies and Race one commenced at 10.20am for the first of two 50 minute legs. The race started cleanly and quickly settled into a number of battles throughout the field, Muston got away in first followed by a perfect start from the Paddon in the First Focus SR3, followed by Berryman and Greg Smith. It wasn’t until lap 5 until Berryman was through to second place and out to chase Muston down and shortly Greg Smith took Paddon for 3rd. There were so many individual battles taking place with Shaw and Medland SR3 versus SR8, with the next pair of Kim Burke and Oliver Smith in a close SR3 scrap followed by Kelly, Peter Johnson, Simon Haggarty, Rowan Ross and Tony Haggarty. Peter Johnson was in the Pits with a mechanical issue and shortly after Berryman had displaced Muston for the race lead. Drama struck Greg Smith on lap 17 when running wide whilst overtaking another car saw him spinning on the grass at turn 7 resulting in light contact with the wall, damage was minimal but with a 25 minute turn around repairs would be a challenge to get the car on the grid for leg two.

Chris Medland had found a turn of speed and displaced Muston for 2nd place however it was clear to all that Muston had some sort of mechanical issue that was affecting his performance. The battles continued right to the end between Paddon and Michael Shaw who was showing great pace, Oliver Smith and Kim burke continued to fight for 7th and 8th place with Nick Kelly pushing hard to catch up. Simon and father Tony Haggarty's rounded out the top 10. Rowan Ross had a spin on the exit of turn 13 and could not restart which in turn bought out the Safety car with 3 laps remaining. Following the restart the order stayed mostly the same to the end with victory going to a very pleased Tim Berryman followed by Medland, Neale Muston in the SR8 Class and Peter Paddon, Michael Shaw Oliver Smith, Kim Burke, Nick Kelly and The Haggarty's rounding out the top ten.

Fastest Race lap went to Berryman with a 1.27.48 in an SR8 and the fastest SR3 honours went to class victor Peter Paddon with a 1.30.10.

The second leg followed a short 25 minute break which actually caught a couple of drivers out with the tight time turnaround resulting in Oliver Smith and Pole position man Winslow in the Berryman car starting rear of the grid. Medland's SR8 also started rear of grid when his SR8 would not fire to join the starting grid on time. Greg Smith and peter Johnson were sadly non-starters.

The Number 1 car of Muston charged away to lead the field from the rolling start followed by Sr3 of Paddon and Shaw, Kim Burke had a great start to lead Nick Kelly followed by Simon Haggarty and Tony Haggarty. Amazingly and with Muston having gearbox issues it only took until lap 9 for the hard charging Winslow to take the race lead to the delight of car owner and Race 1 winner Tim Berryman. 2 laps later Muston was back in the lead as Winslow pitted for his compulsory Pro driver drive through handicap but again 10 laps later the Winslow car had taken back the lead from Muston. The close battles were hard to keep up with and the SR8 of Medland was slowly making it closer to the leaders from starting last. On Lap 29 and with what seemed like about 4 laps to go in the 50 minute race it all went very pear shaped for some and most notable the race leader James Winslow who has throttle cable issues meaning his down shifts were near impossible to manage. Michael Shaw was super impressive with his charge to 3rd place past Paddon and by lap 30 with all the dramas unfolding with the race leaders of Winslow and Muston saw the Number 2 car of Shaw take the outright race lead, which is where a very excited Michael Shaw stayed to take race victory in an SR3. A hard charging and delighted Chris Medland took 2nd place in his SR8 followed in 3rd  by the first Focus SR3 of  Paddon, then Kim Burke SR3, Simon Haggarty's SR3, then Oliver Smith, and limping home in 7th place was James Winslow’s wounded SR8. Nick Kelly was the first of the non-Classified finishers with mechanical dramas 3 laps from the end and DNF’s from Whiting, The First Neon car of David White, Rowan Ross and Neale Muston.  

Fastest Outright lap went to James Winslow in the Berryman SR8 with a blistering 1.26.42 and the SR3 fastest time posted was a 1.30.09 By Peter Paddon.

Round Results for the Radical 250 were combined points from legs one and two.

SR8 Class

1st Place. Tim Berryman/ James Winslow. Radical SR8

2nd Place Chris Medland. Radical SR8

SR3 Class

1st Place Peter Paddon, Radical SR3

2nd Place Michael Shaw, Radical SRS

3rd Place, Kim Burke, Radical SR3

 

Championship Points after round 4

SR8 Series Points:

Tim Berryman 318
Neale Muston 229
Chris Medland 195
John Corbett 194

SR3 Series Points:

Michael Shaw 319
Kim Burke 259.5
Peter Paddon 244
Oliver Smith 196
 

Next Round - Round 5, V8 Supercars Sydney Motorsport Park August 22nd - 24th

Next Track Day - August 8th Sydney Motorsport Park

Next Supersports - July 26th One day event / Friday Practice also available.


 
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