Simonsen Starts With Two Wins
Australian GT Championship got underway at Wakefield Park last weekend
(March 4-5) and, amid some bizarre circumstances, Allan Simonsen
won two of the three races, in Ted Huglin’s former-ACEMCO
The first bizarre
circumstance was that the Dane wasn’t even supposed to be
doing anything that weekend and Ted asked me to come along and assess
the changes to the car over the summer break, in the first practice
session," said Simonsen.
plan had been to sort out a niggly gear selection issue (which had
plagued the Ferrari in 2005) during the off-season, but Huglin was
horrified to find that it was still there in practice for the first
gearbox selector gremlin I feel Allan will be more effective in
the car this weekend than me, and that can only help us as the season
moves forward," said the car owner.
There was another
handicap for the 360, for the first race – the organisers
had decided to give it 150 kg of ballast and 1000 revs. less than
in 2005. But there was more to come….
fifth for race 1 – but only three-tenths slower than pole
man Greg Crick in his Viper. The race turned out to be almost routine:
the Dane picked off the Vipers and Porsches one by one, took the
lead on lap 13, and won – simple as that.
stepped in – and granted the Ferrari an additional 77 kg of
ballast! Ted Huglin argued that 227 kg of ballast could damage the
car, and a compromise was reached: an extra 37 kg. There was still
more to come though: as Simonsen sat on the dummy grid, the team
was told to raise the ride height of the car by 20 mm.
The team had
no choice but to comply. Simonsen struggled to fourth place in the
race, with a car that was behaving like a “tail-happy go kart”,
but an infringement by another (higher placed) car saw the 360 elevated
Race 3 saw some
common sense prevail, and the ride-height was re-set and the 37
kg removed. From third, Allan Simonsen took the lead, from the Crick
Viper, on lap 3 – and took his second win of the meeting.
referred to himself as a "Scrooge McDuck", which must
be an Australian expression for a "tight-****": he chose
to save money and not fit fresh rubber.
to like the idea of these weekend's off!" grinned the popular
Dane. He’s obviously the championship leader at this stage
of the season.
Simonsen - 104
Crick - 98
Washington - 85
Koundouris - 76
Koundouris - 74
Samadi - 54
Kaias - 53
Skinner - 52
Teulan - 47
Twigg - 45
The next event
is at Bathurst in mid-April.