SUPERUTES ADELAIDE ROUND WRAP UP
21 March 2019
The forecast for the Superloop Adelaide 500 was always looking to create challenging conditions and it delivered as promised. The temperatures reached 42°C on Friday and continued through Saturday with a cool change to 27°C on Sunday morning for our third and final race.
The Isuzu D-MAX was on the pace straight away on Thursday, finishing both practice sessions second quickest.
The Adelaide race schedule had some changes this year with the first two races being reverse grid starts. Team Principle Ross Stone noted, “There were some rookies new to the SuperUtes category and obviously had never done a rolling start in these SuperUtes before where you need to bring racing boost up against brake pedal application. There ended up being five wide going into turn one and I was surprised that they all made it through but by turn five it saw race one finished with a massive clean up after contact created a roll over and damage to other utes”.
Due to the intense temperatures on Friday and Saturday the heat rule was applied where the front windows of all SuperUtes had to be removed to allow airflow into the cabin for the driver as it was getting up to 52°C in the cabin.
“Saturday was the hottest race day I’ve ever attended throughout my career, we had to refrigerate phones and laptops, and keep everyone hydrated as it was so uncomfortable. Tom handled it like a pro and his fitness was evident”.
After the Caltex Delo Racing D-MAX qualified 2nd we were starting from position 11 in Race 1 and after the incident on the opening lap, the race was finished behind the safety ute limiting opportunities to gain positions in green racing.
Race two starting’s position was an accumulation of qualifying points and race one finishing points so we were starting from P2. “This was another race where some thought they were racing for sheep stations and there was another incident on the opening lap so once again we spent a long time behind a pace ute before a two lap sprint to the end”, he also added.
Tom crossed the finish line in P2 with an undamaged ute which was a rare sight in the SuperUtes pit marquee.
The SuperUtes were the first category to race on Sunday morning which saw a green race from flag to flag. Tom got a great start and led the opening lap until Ryal Harris passed on the last corner when Tom got a little bit out of shape, which left room for Elliot Barbour to take 2nd position. Tom quickly recovered and had a good battle with Barbour to regain 2nd place. Tom produced the lap record chasing Harris down and they finished nose to tail.
Combining the weekends results Tom finished second overall and sprayed some champagne on the podium.
“It was our first race with the Isuzu D-MAX and it handled the track conditions really well as it’s so well balanced and handled the extreme heat it was racing in”.
“It was a real compliment to Caltex Australia as we had a lot of other team members stating how good the Caltex Delo® Racing Ute looked, it stands out in the field really well”.
“The team is now looking forward to testing prior to our next event in Perth to test a new size tyre and a new wider 10 inch wheel. The introduction of this new wheel and tyre will most likely be introduced at our third round at Winton”.
The Pirtek Perth SuperNight will be held on 2nd – 4th May.
Superloop Adelaide 500 Results
Overall Results – 2nd
Practice 1 – 2nd
Practice 2 – 2nd
Qualifying – 2nd
Race 1 (starting 11th) – 9th
Race 2 (starting 2nd) – 2nd
Race 3 (starting 2nd) – 2nd
Fastest Lap Record (Tom Alexander Race 3) - 1:44.4391
Championship Points after Round 1
1 Ryal Harris 131
2 Tom Alexander 123
3 Elliot Barbour 115
4 Michael Sieders 104
5 Luke van Herwaarde 99
6 Cameron Crick 95
7 Ben Walsh 79
8 Craig Woods 72
9 Adam Dodd 64
10 Craig Dontas 19
11 Christopher Formosa 1
12 Benjamin Falk 0
13 Dean Canto 0