Ryal Harris claimed Race 3 and Round 5 of the Auto One V8 Ute Racing Series - protected by Armor All at Mount Panorama, Sunday, 9th October.
It was the Gold Coasters first Round win in his six year V8 Ute history, and the V.I.P Petfood driver has now closed in on the Series lead.
"I'm happy and just want to do it again in a few weeks and I'll be even happier. Two poles in a row, I know I've got the qualifying speed now, so I just need to have a great qualifying run at the Gold Coast and stay out of trouble in the reverse grid race," said Harris.
It was a Ford/Holden front row with Harris on pole alongside Monster Energy backed Nathan Pretty. Pretty got off the line first and lead for the first part of the lap until Harris took him into The Chase, holding on for the race win."My start was ok. The Commodores are better off the line so Nathan got a good start and so did Pither. I knew I had heaps of pace in the dry I just wanted to get the 4 - 5 second lead and feel comfortable with the race," said Harris.
Pretty came second earning him third outright for the round. David Sieders cruised home in his Australian Industrial Supplies backed Ford in third and claimed second overall for the Round and inched him closer towards the Series title.
"I'm in the 20 point range now to Chris (Pither, Series Leader). It was a good weekend points wise, Ryal skipped ahead of me by six points but that's nothing. We've got the car speed to back it up although we had a few motor issues this weekend so we will get these sorted before Gold Coast and we'll be good to go," said Sieders.
Ice Break Racing's Chris Pither and Grant Johnson were battling for fourth position until the two had a coming together coming down The Chase on the final lap, which saw Johnson penalised 10 championship points as a result."It was a pretty good race all round, we unfortunately got run wide by Ryal onto mountain straight on the first lap which hurt my run up to turn two, but apart from that it was a trouble free race. I got some good laps and maintained position. Come the last lap unfortunately I received a large hit late in the breaking zone into The Chase which sent me onto the grass and I lost a few spots. It's disappointing to lose valuable championship points although I'm still happy with my round," said Pither.
Pither dropped back to sixth position behind Kim Jane in fourth and Charlie O'Brien in fifth. Johnson held on and took home seventh for the Race ahead of Andrew Fisher in his Jesus Racing Ford in eighth.
Sage Automation's Gary Baxter drove well to claim ninth for the Race ahead of Truckline Racing's Ryan Hansford, who also posted tenth for his first Round at Bathurst in a V8 Ute. Rhys McNally also had a great race claiming 11th.
Jack Elsegood took home the Champion Spark Plugs Hole Shot Award and $500 for the best race start in Race 3. Harris also took home $500 for the SS Inductions Hard Charger Award for passing the most amount of Utes in Race 2 and Warren Millett won the Masters Award (best performing driver over 45 years of age) placing 17th overall for the Round in his Wake-up Racing Holden.
To re-live the highlights from Round 5 of the Auto One V8 Ute Racing Series - protected by Armor All, tune in to Network Seven, Saturday, 15th October, at 12:30pm on Network Seven.
The V8 Utes head to the Armor All Gold Coast 600 for Round 6 of the Series 21 - 23 October at Surfers Paradise.
See below top ten results for Race 31 58 VIP Petfoods Ryal Harris Ford Falcon XR8 2:34.53 2 56 Monster Energy Nathan Pretty Holden SS 2:36.17 3 8 Australian Industrial Supplies David Sieders Ford Falcon XR8 2:36.25 4 27 Bob Jane T-Marts Kim Jane Holden SS 2:36.83 5 15 Future Assist Group Charlie O'Brien Ford Falcon XR8 2:36.32 6 42 Ice Break Racing Chris Pither Holden SS 2:36.44 7 1 Hi-Tech Motor Sport Grant Johnson Holden SS 2:35.92 8 9 Jesus Racing Andrew Fisher Ford Falcon XR8 2:37.61 9 3 Sage Automation / Roof Seal Gary Baxter Holden SS 2:38.47 10 6 Truckline Racing Ryan Hansford Ford Falcon XR8 2:37.84
Click here <http://login.ireach.com.au/ch/16769/2d7m1jv/1530341/e5f1110gjt.html> to download full results from Race 3.
See below top ten standings for Round 5.
1 58 VIP Petfoods Ryal Harris Ford Falcon XR8 124 2 8 Australian Industrial Supplies David Sieders Holden SS 118 3 56 Monster Energy Nathan Pretty Holden SS 117 4 42 Ice Break Racing Chris Pither Holden SS 112 5 1 Hi-Tech Motorsport Grant Johnson Holden SS 109 6 3 Sage Automation / Roof Seal Andrew Fisher Holden SS 106 7 27 Bob Jane T-Marts Kim Jane Holden SS 104 8 15 Future Assist Group Charlie O'Brien Ford Falcon XR8 100 9 6 Truckline Racing Gary Baxter Ford Falcon XR8 99 10 9 Jesus Racing Ryan Hansford Ford Falcon XR8 99
See below top five standings for the ENZED Drivers Championship1 42 Ice Break Racing Chris Pither 609 2 58 VIP Petfoods Ryal Harris 592 3 1 Hi-Tech Motorsport Grant Johnson 592 4 8 Australian Industrial Supplies David Sieders 578 5 56 Monster Energy Nathan Pretty 547