Queensland based racer Chris Donnelly is set to make his Bathurst endurance race debut aboard a Ford Falcon Saloon Car at the Hi-Tec Oils Bathurst 6 Hour, following in the wheel tracks of his father John Donnelly, a Bathurst 1000 veteran.
A five-time competitor in the October Mount Panorama classic, Donnelly Senior made four of those starts between 1981-84 aboard the ex-Dick Johnson XD Falcon that infamously hit a rock during the 1980 race.
Donnelly’s best result in the 1000 came in 1981, with a 10th place finish when paired with fellow Queenslander John English, with the shortened race won by Johnson.
For the Easter event, Donnelly Junior will partner up with experienced Saloon Car racer Luke Andersen aboard the number 88 Property Mastermind Racing entry.
Donnelly’s impressive racing resume features a total of four CAMS Queensland State Championships in Sports Sedans (1997, ’98 and ’03), as well as in Hyundai Excels (2015).
While Andersen has Saloon Car experience on the Mountain dating back to 2015, Donnelly’s previous outing on the 6.2km long circuit was aboard his EB Falcon Sports Sedan in 2012.
“After all of these years of watching Dad race at Bathurst, it will be a bit of a role reversal this time around,” said Chris Donnelly.
“To be racing in a Bathurst endurance event aboard a Ford Falcon continues on a proud family tradition.
“Luke is strong competitor in Saloon Cars, and I think we would probably consider ourselves to be dark horses in Class I.
“There are some great combinations in the Class, particularly Coleby Cowham/Lindsay Kearns, and also the Jarvis brothers, who will be very quick.
“All those guys have had recent Bathurst experience and will be tough to beat.
“Class I flies under the radar a bit, but last year Cowham/Kearns actually ran in the top ten for a while in the 6 Hour before coming home 16th overall.
“Obviously I would like to thank Aston Air-Conditioning for their long time support, I wouldn’t be on the grid without Shane and Lauren Bradford’s continued assistance.”
The team is also supported in the Bathurst 6 Hour by Property Mastermind and Positive Property Strategies, Aeroflow, Pfitzner Performance Gearboxes, and Scotts Rods, with Andersen dedicating the event to his good friend and sponsor Tony Hoffman from Hoffman Kelly Accountants, who sadly passed away recently.