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Jun 18, 2014 - 06:59 AM
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Big Rebuild Gets Monaro Back On Track for Darwin TCM
Posted by: newsla on Jun 18, 2014 - 06:55 AM
Sports Cars
Big Rebuild Gets Monaro Back On Track for Darwin TCM

A BIG REBUILDING EFFORT that has stretched from the end of Summer to the beginning of Winter will have ENZED Touring Car Masters stalwart Les Walmsley back on track in round three of the series in Darwin this weekend.


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Originally locked in to drive the Savy Motorsport-prepared 1971 Holden HQ Monaro for the full season, Walmsley’s year was unfortunately cut short in the opening race of the season at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide.

A multi-car incident there saw the blue and sliver HQ badly damaged and forced out of the remaining races in round one and the subsequent second round at Winton, in April.

However, the noted Historic Touring Car racer returns to the track this weekend at the Shannons Thunder Valley 100 – racing with the V8 Supercars SKYCITY Triple Crown Event – and he says the car is raring to go after a big rebuild.

“I think it’s probably the best car I’ve ever driven and it’s got the best motor I’ve ever had, too,” Les said following a brief shakedown of the rebuilt car at Winton last week.

“It has been a huge job by the guys to rebuild the car. Basically everything forward of the fire wall has been replaced and is brand new. It’s got new panels, new chassis rails and of course the new engine which was built from the ground up.

“It has just been a huge effort from everyone involved at Savy Motorsport and everyone that supports us.”

Walmsley, who lists a second outright in the 2012 Queensland Raceway round as his best TCM result yet, says he’s excited to get to the Territory track for the first time.

“I’ve never been there before and I’m really looking forward to it. The car has gone really well at Hidden Valley before with Tony Edwards driving, so I’m really looking forward to getting up there.

“I have high expectations to go up there and do a good job to reward all of the people who have supported us and continue to do so. There’s a lot of people who help us out.

“Savy Motorsport have done an amazing job. They’ve got such a commitment to the series and they always put cars on the track, with Keith’s Falcon, the HQ and the other cars they run, that are well presented perform well.

“The preparation is immaculate and they do everything to keep them on the track.”

Savy Motorsport will field a strong four-car squad this weekend with returning TCM racer Adam Bressington drafted in to steer the Ford Falcon XA sedan once driven to podium finishes by Leanne Tander in the series.

Bressington, a former V8 Ute series regular, raced his own HQ Holden Monaro in the series for several seasons and makes his comeback this weekend in the rival marque.

Meanwhile, Savy Motorsport’s headline act this season has been the efforts of Ford Falcon XB Hardtop ace, Keith Kassulke.

The international Aussie, who bases himself in Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea and travels to each round from abroad, has been making a splash on the racing landscape this year.

As well as his regular front-running performances in the ENZED Touring Car Masters Series, Kassulke has also been competing in the Australian GT Championship driving an Ascari A10 GT car, plus a host of international endurance races in an enduro-special Ford Focus.

Meanwhile, Savy Motorsport’s fourth car – a ’64 Ford Mustang driven by William Vining – is coming off a strong third place finish in the ProSports class at Winton Raceway.

A strong ENZED Touring Car Masters field will tackle the Shannons Thunder Valley 100 this weekend with three races to be staged across the weekend.

The third round of the 2014 series features all of the regular contenders plus some tasty additions to a competitive grid.

John Bowe (Ford Mustang), Jim Richards (Ford Falcon Sprint) and Andrew Miedecke (Chevrolet Camaro) have dominated proceedings at Hidden Valley in the series six previous visits – Bowe having won three rounds and ten races at the venue in TCM.

However the likes of Brad Tilley (Ford Falcon XY GTHO) and brother Cameron (Ford Boss Mustang), plus XB Falcon ace Eddie Abelnica – coming off a podium finish at the most recent round at Winton – are also likely to be contenders.

Races one and three will be shown on the Seven Network as part of their extensive coverage of the V8 Supercars Championship.

The PWR ‘Cool Master’ and Rare Spares Achievement Awards will all be up for grabs this weekend as well as the usual ProMaster, ProAm and ProSports divisions within the TCM grid.

The Seven Network will cover two of the weekends three races live as part of their extensive weekend coverage across June 20-22.

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