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Feb 20, 2014 - 05:47 AM
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Full V8 Ute Field For Clipsal 500 Season Opener
Posted by: newsla on Feb 20, 2014 - 05:46 AM
Sports Cars
Full V8 Ute Field For Clipsal 500 Season Opener


The V8 Ute Racing Series will kick off 2014 at the Clipsal 500, for the 14th year in a row, and returning two-times V8 Ute Champion, Ryal Harris will lead the charge in the Number 1 All Purpose Pest Ford FG for Big Gun Racing.

 

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With former Adelaide winners, Jeremy Gray, Nathan Pretty, Kris Walton and David Sieders all back in the line-up, it’s sure to be one of the toughest season openers yet ,when they hit the streets of Adelaide for Round 1, 27th February – 2nd March.

Harris is yet to kick off his Series campaign with a round win and will be hoping to rectify that this year.

“The past two championship years we haven’t had the best run at Clipsal but I’m hoping it will all change this year, I’d love to start off the year on podium but it hasn’t deterred me from winning the championship in the past but then again, no-one ever likes to lose,” said Harris.

Two other drivers are set to mix it up the front this year and both will be making the move to Holden. 2013 Rookie of the Year winner, Elliot Barbour, will start his second season in a Holden under the Murphy Motorsport banner, and 2011 V8 Ute Rookie of the Year Ryan Hansford will also move to the Red Lion and will continue to race with Peters Motorsport.

“I’m feeling confident, the cars are definitely different but I had a chance to drive the Holden the other day, I did about 15 laps, not a lot, so I will need to adapt to be able to drive well,” explained Hansford.

Matt Nolan has made the move from Murphy Motorsport and will run in a Ford with Big Gun Racing.

Local drivers, Noel Edge and Craig Dontas, will be joined by fellow South Aussie’s Graham Stewart and Adrian Cottrell, the former Aussie Racing Car Champion (2011) and Shannon’s Supercar Showdown Contestant will make his first appearance in a V8 Ute in Adelaide. Fellow Adelaide Rookie Jordan Skinner will also be racing in his home state. The 20 year old raced in the Formula 3 Championship last year and in 2010 competed in the British Formula Ford Championship.

Another Rookie to step into the line-up is 23 year old Lithgow based Phil Woodbury. Woodbury drove in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge and the under 3litre Historical Class and is looking forward to his first outing in a V8 Ute.

“I am extremely excited for my first race, not only will it be my first race in the Utes but it will be the first time that have raced at a street circuit as well. I’m pretty realistic about our first races I don’t have amazing goals, hopefully we can just improve through the year and hopefully be a consistent top 15, performer towards the end of the year,” said Woodbury.

John “Spud” Wood and Layton Barker are both aiming to complete the full season, after competing at various rounds in 2013, the two will race Holden’s under the Williams Race Tech banner.

V8 Ute veteran George “Hollywood” Elliot will also re-join the field after a 2 year absence the former actor is looking forward to handling a V8 Ute again.

“I’m really excited, it’s been two years out of the car and to be honest I haven’t even looked at a Ute in two years, the new line-up is looking good so I can’t wait to get out there and get amongst it,” said Elliot who will have his first spin in his Holden VE tomorrow at Winton Raceway.

The 32 V8 Race Utes begin their Adelaide assault on Thursday, 27th February.

See below full race Schedule for the 2014 V8 Ute Racing Series.
Thursday, 27th February Practice 1 9:00am
Thursday, 27th February Practice 2 12:10pm
Thursday, 27th February Qualifying 5:20pm
Friday, 28th February Race 1 2:25pm
Saturday, 1st March Race 2 9:25am
Sunday, 2nd March Race 3 10:50am

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