THE REV-UP: ROUND 6, MOUNT PANORAMA
Nov 4, 2014
Welcome to Round 6 of the ENZED Touring Car Masters Series: The TCM Mountain Masters, presented by ENZED, Shannons and Rare Spares.
2014 marks the seventh time that the ENZED Touring Car Masters series will have visited Mount Panorama, Bathurst, in its current format.
The series visited prior to 2007 in the Biante Historic Touring Car Series guise however these records only take into account the 2007-onwards era.
The series’ first visited in 2007 and has visited every year since except for 2008.
Click here for the round 6 entry list..
TCM Competition at Mount Panorama traditionally produces the most unpredictable racing of the year.
9 different drivers have won the 18 races held across six rounds since 2007, with no driver having won more than three times in total.
Gavin Bullas and John Bowe have each won three times with Jim Richards, Steve Mason, Brad Tilley, Andrew Miedecke and Eddie Abelnica all having won twice.
Leanne Tander and Glenn Seton are the big names to have added to that list with a single race win each – in both cases, the Sunday morning ‘finale’ of the 2010 and 2011 rounds, respectively.
In five of the six visits to Mount Panorama there has been three winners from three races – no one has ever ‘swept’ a Bathurst round by winning all three races with the closest being two wins to Steve Mason, en-route to his 2007 round win.
Despite there not being any one dominant driver in TCM’s Bathurst history, Jim Richards is – not at all surprisingly – at the top of the list when it comes to Bathurst success.
Richards is the only driver to win multiple TCM rounds at Bathurst (2009 and 2010) despite having only ever won two races.
His strength comes from consistency, having finished on the podium a remarkable 14 times from 18 starts on the Mountain. Richards has also scored two pole positions – the only driver to achieve that.
Like other circuits, the Bathurst TCM lap record has copped a fair hiding over the years – but the great who currently holds it will be remembered forever.
The late Jason Richards set the class lap record in 2011 during his pursuit of Glenn Seton for the race three victory on the Sunday morning of that year’s Event. Richards fell just short, but his 2m22.6622s appropriately stands as the benchmark to this day.
Glenn Seton set the qualifying record at 2m21.6287s in 2013 driving a Ford Falcon GTHO owned by Doug Westwood. Sadly, the car was severely damaged in a big Conrod straight crash later that weekend.
Only two drivers have been able to convert pole position to victory in race one on the Mountain.
Qualifying has always been the ‘less important’ bit of the weekend in TCM competition and Bathurst is proof of this.
Only on two occasions have drivers converted pole position to a win in the opening race; Gavin Bullas too his Mustang from pole to a win in 2007 and John Bowe did the same in 2012.
On only one occasion (2007) have the same three drivers who qualified first, second and third all finished together on the race one podium – in order or not!
Bathurst is Ford Country in TCM.
Holdens may have the track record in the 1000, but if you’ve got a Ford you’re a fair chance to win in Touring Car Masters on the Mountain.
Fords have won 14 of the 18 Bathurst TCM Races with Chevrolet (4) the only others to greet the flag first; thanks to Andrew Miedecke and Steve Mason.
It doesn’t get much better when you look broader, either: Fords have filled 24 podium spots over the years compared to Chevrolet’s 9, 4 for GM’s local arm Holden and two to AMC – scored by Jim Richards in his Javelin in 2012.
Long-time TCM brands Chrysler or Porsche are yet to trouble the scorers.
BATHURST 1000 WINNERS
There are two former Bathurst 1000 champions on the TCM Grid this weekend;
Jim Richards scored 7 wins in 1978, 79, 80 (with Peter Brock), 1991, 92 (with Mark Skaife), 1998 (with Rikard Rydell) and 2002 (with Mark Skaife). Richards also finished second in 1993 and 1997 (V8), third in 1989 and 1998, fourth in 1985, 87 and 97 (2L), fifth in 2003 and sixth in 1986.
John Bowe scored 2 wins, in 1989, 1994 with Dick Johnson. Bowe also finished second in 1988, 1992 and 1996 and third in 2004.
Several other key TCM regulars have Bathurst 1000 credits on their CV:
‘Cricky’ made 12 Bathurst 1000 starts. Made debut in 1989 driving a VL SS Group A Commodore with privateer-turned publisher-turned V8 Commissioner Chris Lambden.
He scored his best result in 1993 driving the Ampol Max 3 Commodore with Bob Jones, when they finished 7th (having been third in the Sandown 500 the same year). Also finished 8th in 1999 (with Paul Weel) and 9th in 1990 – again with Lambden, in a Nissan Skyline. His last start was in 2002 when he recorded a DNF after sharing a 3M Racing AU Falcon with Phil Scifleet. Most recently, Crick finished 3rd in the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12-hour this year.
Miedecke made 15 Bathurst 1000 starts and made his debut in 1986 driving a Mercedes Benz 190E with Danish driver, Jorg van Ommen, though they failed to finish. The then-open wheel ace starred in 1987 when he qualified 5th and set the fastest lap of the race sharing the Oxocube Sierra with Don Smith – the pair ultimately finishing 17th.
His best finish came in the dramatic 1997 V8 Supercars 1000 when he and Mark Larkham finished third in the Mitre 10 Falcon, having started 12th. He also finished 7th in the 1991 race when sharing a Mobil 1 Racing entry with Peter Brock, replicating the same result a year later with Troy Dunstan, in a Mobil 1 Racing Commodore.
In 15 starts, Miedecke finished in the top-10 five times and scored one podium.
Rusty French (Made his Bathurst debut in 1968 driving a Hillman Gazelle / 6th outright in 1984 with Geoff Russell – Dad of David)
Tony Hunter (7th in 1988 with Steve Harrington in a VK SS Group A Commodore)
Brett Youlden (21st in the 1993 Great Race in a VL SS Group A with John English)
TCM BATHURST ROUND WINNERS;
2007 – STEVE MASON (CAMARO)
2009 – JIM RICHARDS (FALCON SPRINT)
2010 – JIM RICHARDS (FALCON SPRINT)
2011 – GLENN SETON (XB FALCON COUPE)
2012 – BRAD TILLEY (FALCON GTHO)
2013 – JOHN BOWE (MUSTANG TRANS-AM)
QUALIFYING RECORD: Glenn Seton – Ford Falcon XY GTHO 2m21.6287s
LAP RECORD: Jason Richards – Holden Monaro GTS 2m22.6622s
3 – Gavin Bullas, John Bowe
2 – Steven Mason, Jim Richards, Brad Tilley, Andrew Miedecke, Eddie Abelnica
1 – Leanne Tander, Glenn Seton
2 – Jim Richards
1 – Gavin Bullas, Andrew Miedecke, John Bowe, Glenn Seton
Jim Richards – 14
John Bowe – 7
Brad Tilley – 7
Andrew Miedecke – 6
Gavin Bullas – 4
3 – Steve Mason, Eddie Abelnica, Glenn Seton
2 – Brett Youlden
1 – Andrew MacLean, Leanne Tander, Jason Richards, Adam Bressington, Jason Gomersall