Ghost of Ned Kelly to ride shotgun...

 with V8 Ute drivers at WintonFamily

It has been said that if Ned Kelly was alive today, his suit of armour would be manufactured in fireproof Nomex, the famous head protection would be a Bell full face race helmet, and that no local Constable would see him for dust in his 300 horsepower V8 Ute.

Kelly would be right at home as a driver in Australia’s own Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series – no fear required, a scant disregard for other people’s property, and complete disdain for following the rules!

Kelly was one of Australia’s most feared bush rangers and this weekend's Round Six of the Yokohama V8 Ute Racing Series will see a battle royale reminiscent of Kelly’s last stand right in Ned’s backyard.

All drivers will be vying for a podium spot to gain prime positions in the series leading into the last two rounds.

Currently the top two in the series Ford driver, Layton Crambrook and Holden driver Kim Jane are only separated by 25 points. Crambrook will not only have to watch out for ghosts but for Jane who has placed second in the past three rounds and claims Winton as one of his local tracks.

 “This is one of my local tracks and we are very happy to be in second only 25 points behind Layton. QLD was very successful we put the pressure on Layton and managed to pull some points on him. Now heading to Winton we will try and pull some more points,” Jane said.

Currently in third position, reigning champion Grant Johnson will be pushing to get his Grove Fruit Juice Racing car across the track with Jack “The Hustler” Elsegood, who has proven he is one to look out for, winning QLD Raceway in Round Five, hot on his heels.

Youngsters, Queensland driver, Ryal Harris and Miedecke Motorsports, George Meidecke who has demonstrated his ability to win races and claimed the fastest lap time at QLD Raceway are rivalling the more experienced drivers, Gary Baxter, Stephen Robinson and Gary MacDonald to stay in the top ten. 

The series so far has confirmed that it is riddled with non-stop action, misfortunes and mishaps and that it is anyone’s series for the taking.

The Big Gun Racing team has had their fair share of calamity with, Craig Dontas at Clipsal 500 in Adelaide writing off his car and Brad Patton’s car out for a race after t-bone collision with team-mate and father in-law Peter Burnitt at Hidden. Dontas was lucky enough to keep racing after team-mate Peter Van Twest gave him his car to drive for the rest of the Series.

Another driver who has stumbled upon some bad-luck is Jesus All About Racing’s, Andrew Fisher who was pushed from fourth in the series in Round Four to end Round Five in 11th position due to engine troubles at QLD Raceway.

“I had qualified fourth and on the second lap (in race one) in fourth position the oil pump failed and ended the race.

“We pulled an all nighter to put the spare engine in but there was a problem with the way the cams shafts had been put into the motor and they would only fire up on seven cylinders.

“We didn’t make the second race as we tried to identify the problem. We decided to give it a go in race three and started at the rear of the grid and picked up 12 places in two laps but we weren’t in seventh heaven when the engine cut out.

“The motor was dyno’d on the weekend so we are ready to go. I love Winton racetrack, been many times in different classes with great results. I am looking to get on song this weekend and expectations is a podium finish,” said Andrew.

 We can only hope Ned is a V8 Ute fan and riding shotgun along the way - if anyone knows the quick way around these parts it should be him.

 Winton Round Six Race schedule

Friday, 1st AugustPractice One 10:20amPractice Two  2:00pm

Saturday, 2nd AugustQualifying  9:25am Race One  2:25pm

Sunday, 3rd AugustRace Two 10:10amRace Three  3:10pm

The Current Top Ten Series Standings are as follows:

Layton Crambrook      Ford      435 pointsKim Jane                        Holden  410 pointsGrant Johnson               Holden  385 pointsRyal Harris                      Holden   345 pointsGeorge Miedecke       Ford       329 pointsGary Baxter                    Holden   316 pointsJack Elsegood              Ford        310 pointsColin Corkery                 Ford        302 pointsStephen Robinson       Ford        290 pointsGary McDonald            Holden    290 points

Make sure you watch Channel Seven, Saturday, 6th September 1:30pm – 2:30pm to catch all the highlights from round five.