Harris claims back to back V8 Ute Series Win


Gold Coast driver Ryal Harris today claimed his second straight V8 Ute title, with a conservative run to finish 7th in the final race of the 2013 Auto One V8 Ute Series – protected by ARMOR ALL at the Sydney 500 (Sydney Olympic Park) today.

Harris only had to finish the race in his TapOut Energy Ford to take the title for Big Gun Racing, finishing 30 points clear of Nathan Pretty, who claimed second overall in the Milwaukee Tools Holden, 10 points ahead of Perth driver Rhys McNally in the Stratco Holden.  David Sieders and Kris Walton rounded out the Top 5 in the Series, with veteran Gary Baxter 6th in his final year of full time racing in the Sage Holden.

“We knew what we had to do today, I was much more relaxed than this time last year so the feeling is very different, and it probably hasn’t sunk in yet. Full credit to Joe and Peter Burnitt for giving me the opportunity to drive again, and TapOut for making it happen.” Harris said.

Elliot Barbour won the Yokohama Rookie of the Year Award, scoring an evaluation drive with Erebus Motorsport.

“It was our goal to win the Rookie of the Year, and it is a great feeling to have now claimed it. The chance for an Erebus Test is a real bonus, and I can’t wait,” the 22 year old said.

Kris Walton in the Rentco Ford won the round overall, from Sieders, and Nathan Pretty.

Sieders was never headed from his front row start in the final race, and won easily from Walton and Pretty, who was pushed hard all race by McNally.

Sydney driver Ben Dunn had a strong race, battling with Ryan Hansford for 5th until the Queenslander got through under brakes setting the fastest lap on the way. Wakefield also passed Harris mid race, before falling back through the field, while late in the race Michael Almond’s The Boat Works Holden clouted the tyre barrier, and retired to the pits. Gary Baxter, Andrew Fisher and Jesse Dixon round out the top 10.

Auto One driver Adam Marjoram had a troubled weekend with brake issues in his Holden, and was as high as 14th in the final race, before brake problems again set in, dropping the young Perth star back through the field.

Harris now joins an elite list of drivers to have won two V8 Ute titles, (Warren Luff,  Damien White, Grant Johnson) capping off a stellar year, which included an evaluation test recently with FPR, and a NASCAR test in Las Vegas.

Gary MacDonald walked away with the SS Inductions Hard Charger Award for the weekend for passing finishing 12 Grid positions ahead of his starting position in Race 2.

Ben Dunn’s Red Ass Mexican/ BP Securities Ford landed the ARMOR ALL Best Presented Award.

Gary Baxter wrapped up the Masters Award for the round and the series, (for the best performing driver over 45) from Andrew Fisher in the Jesus Ford.

All results are provisional as detailed post – race technical inspections were carried out following the final event.

All the action from the final round will go to air on the SEVEN Network, Saturday, 14th December, from 1.30 pm. Check local guides.

See below top 6 contenders in the V8 Utes ENZED Drivers Championship

 1 Ryal Harris
 2 Nathan Pretty  861
 3 Rhys McNally
 4 David Sieders     835
 5 Kris Walton
6 Gary Baxter 766

See below for Race 3 results

 1  8 Mine Site Fencing Australia  David Sieders  Ford FG  1:46.3129
 2  68 Rentco Transport Equipment  Rentals  Kris Walton  Ford FG  1:46.6868
 3  56 Milwaukee Racing  Nathan  Pretty  Holden  VE  1:47.2732
 4  26 STRATCO Racing  Rhys  McNally  Holden  VE  1:47.2233
 5  6 Hawkins Transport / HT Racing  Ryan  Hansford  Ford FG  1:45.9930
 6  99 RedAss Mexican Food / BNP  Security  Ben Dunn  Ford FG  1:48.3798
 7  1 Tapout Energy Racing  Ryal Harris  Ford FG  1:48.4473
 8  3 Sage Automation / Roof Seal  Gary Baxter  Holden  VE  1:48.4986
 9  9 Jesus Racing Team  Andrew  Fisher  Ford FG  1:48.1987
 10  88 Hayman Reese Racing  Jesse Dixon  Holden  VE  1:48.6269

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