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Dec 11, 2013 - 06:58 AM
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An Unexpected Ending For V8 Utes 2013 Season
Posted by: newsla on Dec 11, 2013 - 06:57 AM
Sports Cars
An Unexpected Ending For V8 Utes 2013 Season

Teams and drivers gathered at Hooters Parramatta to see off the 2013 Auto One V8 Ute Racing Series – protected by ARMOR ALL at a Presentation Night held on Sunday, 8th December but not before a decision was passed down the CAMS Stewards affecting third outright for the year.


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Stratco Racing’s Rhys McNally was excluded from Race 2 for a front end technical infringement, which saw the West Aussie moved from third in the championship to fourth. Although the 23year old was disappointed with the result he is staying positive.

“It was a disappointing end to the season but we know what our potential is now and we are going to come back bigger and better in 2014,” said McNally who graciously accepted fourth.

14 Awards were handed out during the night including the ENZED Drivers Trophy and overall outright championship trophy for the year to Ryal Harris and second overall to Nathan Pretty.

Harris’s teammate and team owner Peter Burnitt joined him on the stage to accept the Award and the two were overcome with emotion taking back to back titles.

“It’s so great to see Ryal grow like this and I’m so happy to be involved with his career, he’s such a talent and I know we’ll come back next year even stronger,” said Burnitt.

David Sieders walked away with third Outright for the year and accepted the Award in front of his friends and family.

Elliot Barbour had the honour of receiving the Ashley Cooper Memorial Trophy, which was presented by Ashley’s mother Maree. (Ashley died driving in the V8 Supercar Development Series at the Clipsal 500 in 2008 and all of his organs were donated to save others’ lives).

“It’s so special to us that we are invited back every year to present this award and it’s such an honour to Ashley, it means so much to us and I’m so happy to be presenting this to Elliot. I urge all parents to talk to their children about organ donation, I was so grateful that I’d had this conversation with Ashley and he was able to help all of these families, I know if I had the chance to take an organ I would want it, ” said Mrs Cooper.

Barbour also accepted an Award from Barry Ryan, General Manager, Erebus Motorsport who presented him with the Yokohama Rookie of the Year Award and a certificate to test one of the Erebus Motorsport’s race vehicles - either an E63 AMG V8 Supercar or the Bathurst 12 Hour winning SLS AMG GT3 Gullwing.

“I’m truly honoured to be accepting these Awards. Thanks so much to Maree for being here tonight, it really means a lot to represent Ashley’s name in this way. I’m also so thankful to Erebus Motorsport for this opportunity. It’s a great chance to prove myself and I plan to show them exactly what I’m made of,” said the 21 year old.

Special Awards went to Denis Cribbin who has stepped down from the V8 Ute Board this year after 9 years.

“I’m truly humbled to have been honoured tonight. I really wasn’t expecting this, after 45 years in motorsport it’s nice to be recognised like this,” said Cribbin.

Gary Baxter was also recognised for his 11 years as a driver in the V8 Ute Racing Series. Baxter will retire from full-time driving and may appear for one last hurrah at his local tack in Adelaide (Clipsal 500) he also walked away with the Masters Award for the year.

Andrew Fisher took out the Piston Cup the V8 Utes equivalent to the Brownlow Medal awarded to the competitor that is judged to be a great ambassador for the series, they show a willingness to be involved in a variety of V8 Ute Associated activities, including vehicle displays, signing sessions, off-track promotional activity, commercial partner requirements, such as hot laps V8 Ute official functions. Team and vehicle preparation and presentation, overall contribution to the category not necessarily attributed to race results.

Other Awards included the Most Improved Driver that went to Jeremy Gray who improved four places from last year, 21st to 17th this year.

Team Manager of the year went to Big Gun Racing’s Manager Joe Devries for the second year running, Team of the Year went to Peters Motorsport run by Rod Dawson and the Best Presented team to Wake-up Racing.

To recap on all of the action from the final round of the V8 Ute Racing Series tune into Network Seven this Saturday at 1:30pm (check local guides).

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