FEW ISSUES FOR JIM AT WINTON BUT RESULTS OK.
23 MAY 2016
The Winton round of the Touring Car Masters series provided Jim with a couple of issues over the course of the weekend but in the final analysis the Shannons AMC Javelin finished all three races without damage so that was a plus.
The first issue occurred in the first practice session when the Javelin suffered a power steering fluid leak after just two laps which curtailed the session for Jim.
In the second session Jim finished fourth behind Jason Gomersall in the new A9X Torana, Sven Burchartz in the Porsche and Glenn Seton in the Mustang with only seven tenths covering the four.
With new tyres for qualifying the times tumbled and at the end of twenty minutes Jim was sixth behind John Bowe in the four door Torana, Gomersall, Eddie Abelnica in the Falcon two door, Steve Johnson in the GT Falcon and Seton with only nine tenths covering the six cars.
Jim had an uncharacteristic spin at turn four in this session when his foot baulked on the brake pedal and the Javelin finished up bogged in the sand trap and facing the wrong way.
The car was quickly dragged out and Jim was able to complete a run to get sixth place on the grid which is where he finished in the first twelve lap race behind Bowe, Gomersall, Seton, Johnson and Abelnica.
One of the issues which had come to light was that the chosen gear ratios in the four speed G Force gearbox didn’t really suit the circuit which had been completely resurfaced since last year and was now providing sub record times with eleven of the TCM cars under the lap record in the first race.
“The ratio issue wasn’t something we could address at the circuit but to be honest while we may have gone a bit quicker I don’t think it would have made any difference to the result”. said Jim.
“The new surface was terrific to drive on providing the sort of grip that race drivers always want”. said the seven time Bathurst winner.
In race two Jim was able to make up a position on Abelnica to finish fifth which meant he would start from fifteenth position for the final reverse grid trophy race.
“I was a little conservative to be honest because there was nothing to be gained points wise with all starters in the field receiving fifty points irrespective of where they finish”. said the eight time Targa Tasmania winner.
As it was he finished eleventh and equal fifth overall for the weekend and is sixth in the Pro-Masters standings on 347 points with points leader Bowe on 494 from Johnson on 438, Abelnica on 425, Seton on 387 and Mark King on 372.
“Overall I was quite happy with the car and I know we can make the car a bit faster with a few little tweaks”. said Jim.
The next round of the series will be at Hidden Valley in Darwin on June 17 to 19 and at this stage Jim is unsure which car he will run.
“The rebuilt Falcon Sprint, now with a new 302 ci motor, is almost ready to go so there is an outside chance I may run that. If not I will run it at the next round in Queensland and for the rest of the season”. said Jim.
The Sprint has proved to be a crowd favourite in the past and no doubt it’s reappearance will be welcomed by the fans.
Apart from major sponsor Shannons Jim also receives welcome support from Leatherman Tools, Adrenalin and Porsche Australia.
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