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Dec 13, 2013 - 06:49 AM
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Minda Motorsport To Close Doors
Posted by: newsla on Dec 13, 2013 - 06:48 AM
Sports Cars
Minda Motorsport To Close Doors


After yet another successful season of developing future stars, amassing race wins and punching well above their weight in the Dunlop V8 Supercar Series, Minda Motorsport’s Bruin Beasley has called time on his Victorian-based business, citing more than 20 years of hard labour and an uncertain future for ‘development’ classes in Australia as the basis of the decision.

 

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“I’ve been involved in motorsport since I was two months old doing hot laps of Surfers Paradise Raceway in the back seat of the car in a baby basket,” Beasley laughed.

“From that point on I was determined to be involved in the sport, but without the significant funds required to be a driver, I decided to work behind the scenes as an engineer. Essentially from the moment I left school I’ve been involved in the sport, which is now well over 20 years, and I’m tired. To be 100% honest, the main reason behind the decision is to spend more time with Joanne and my two girls - I can’t recall how many birthdays and celebrations I’ve missed, but it’s probably more than I’ve attended, and I don’t want to do that any more.

“Look, the decision by CAMS to drop Formula Ford in favour of a category that doesn’t even exist yet was a contributing factor, for sure,” he admitted. “It has taken years to build the infrastructure we have in Formula Ford, and unlike most other teams, I own the cars and the equipment so that young guys looking to come through don’t have to have the expense of buying a car, they can just lease one of ours.

“We’ve been an integral part of the CAMS Rising Star program for a number of years, been behind driver development programs with the likes of Britek before that, and involved in the sport for more than 20 years, yet despite that, and being the reigning Formula Ford champions, we were never consulted on what the best way forward for driver development for young drivers in Australia would be, and we’re on the coal face.

“We weren’t the only ones that weren’t consulted, so you can only take decision making like that for so long before you have to seriously consider continuing to invest in the sport the way we have, because the risk is far too great.

“I’m not going anywhere, I love the sport and it’s my business, but I can’t keep propping it up at my own expense and at the expense of my time with little or no return, so I’ve alerted all the guys that come December 19, that’s it, we’re closing the doors and selling some of our infrastructure. I’ll have a well deserved break with family over Christmas and assess the situation.”

Whilst 2013 didn’t land Minda Motorsport back-to-back national Formula Ford titles, the CAMS Rising Star team of Liam Sager and Macauley Jones amassed the team 12 race wins for the season, by far the most of any other team on the grid, in the process taking the runner-up position in the championship for the second time [also 2011].

In the Dunlop Development Series, former Formula Ford champion Cameron Waters was joined by Tasmanian Sam Walter, the two Minda prepared cars running strongly all season, with Waters missing a potential top five finish in the championship despite campaigning a much older car than the teams ahead of him.

2012 though saw Minda Motorsport’s greatest successes with two national Australian GT titles [GT Trophy and GT Challenge], two national Formula Ford titles [Drivers champion; Jack Le Brocq and Teams champion] and a string of state level Formula Ford titles.

“Over the ten or so years of Minda Motorsport we’ve amassed a number of titles; five national championships (2x AGT, 1x Formula Ford, 2x Hill Climb), six state titles (Formula Ford). We achieved the highest Formula Ford points tally in history during Jack Le Brocq’s championship season, and in the same year took Macauley Jones to the ‘Rookie of the Year’ title. We ran the youngest pairing to ever start and finish the Bathurst 1000 (Cameron Waters and Jesse Dixon - 2012) and won numerous titles at Historic level, Formula Ford, Formula Atlantic etc..

“Whilst I’m proud of what we put in the trophy cabinet, I think more than that, we showed what could be done if you did the job right,” Beasley said. “We are far from the biggest team in the paddock, but we spent right and we managed and maintained what we had to become one of the leading teams in every category we contested, so for that I have to thank our hard working team for all their efforts.

“It has been a pleasure to work over the years with some outstanding mechanics and engineers, many of whom have gone on to other programs and emerged as leaders in their own right.

“We’ve also had an array of outstanding drivers during Minda’s tenure in the sport, from Matthew Brabham to Jesse Dixon, Taz Douglas, Lucas Dumbrell, Gary Jacobsen, Dean Koutsoumidis, Jack Le Brocq, Nick McBride, Andrew McInnes, James Moffat, Liam Sager, Tim Slade, Andrew Thompson, Cameron Waters, Ben Walter, Sam Walter and Glen Wood, and a whole range of other young guys that have come into the team for a round or two across the years. It has been a real pleasure working with them, and I’m sure we’ll cross paths again in the coming seasons.

“For now it’s down to winding up the factory, and preparing some of the cars for sale. Anyone that’s interested in some of the best Formula Fords in the country, or some of the infrastructure to run those cars, should get in touch.

“We also have the ex-GRM Cameron Waters #98 VE Commodore V8 Supercar for sale, and with it, the entry it has to the 2014 Dunlop Series.

“To all our staff, our sponsors and our drivers, thank you all for your efforts to realise a dream I had 30 years ago. We made it to the top and we proved we could stay there, but now it’s time to sit back and take it all in, and try to remember what taking a holiday for more than half a day is like.. Happy New Year to all!”


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