Day 1 of the Bathurst Motor Festival has completed and after a practice session and 2 qualifying sessions, the top 3 spots are held by the Mitsubishi Evo's of Ryan Simpson, Dylan Thomas and Leigh Burges.
The weekend format is 2 sprint races Saturday and an one hour race on Sunday. In the lead up to that the teams can have one or two drivers for the final race. Each qualifying session determines the starting order of each relevant race and the starting position for Race 3 is determined from the finishing grid of race 2.
Good Friday hasn't been good to everyone, in P1 there was small amount of debris at turn 2 for drivers to avoid and car 16 Steve Hodges in his brand new GTS Coupe blew a coolant hose. a couple of drivers due to mechanical failure may need to see the stewards to get permission to start Race 2. Heeley struggled in the start of the session but managed to put it on P20 with 2 laps to go. The father and son team of Phil and Declan Kirkham suffered a hub bearing failure breaking the driveshaft and brake disc at Forrest Elbow, Phil was very lucky to not do any damage to the car and nursed it back to pit lane.
2013 series champ Gerry Murphy's turbo failed and didn't finish a lap in the second session, but will be back tomorrow to no doubt try and put another Evo in the top 5.
The new Toyota 86 Pedders/Pitman Trucks entry with Grant Phillips and legendary Kenny star Shane Jacobson isn't as shiny and new after having a come together with one of the GWS cars at the cutting. Chris Reeves loves the handling he has in his 86 but would love some more power.
Seasoned driver Anton Mechtler will start his race from P8, not bad for a guy who had visions of the last time he raced here in 2009 and broke his back.
Surprisingly there are a few regular series drivers who have never driven at the mountain,, Paul Loiacono, Steve and Jake Shelley, Brett Heeley, Bradley Moss and Kevin Herben. Suzuki regulars Alan Jarvis, Mike Gore and Scott Gore have never been around the mountain either and can't wait to get out there tomorrow.
The series has shown a strong presence here this weekend with 50 entries. Keeping up the professionalism and growth of the category they have engaged the services of Val Stewart to fill the role of Driver Standard Observer and keep a watchful eye on all the drivers.
Tomorrow's 10 lap races are Race 1 with driver A at 10am and Race 2 with driver B at 3.10.
DGB Media are here over the weekend filming the events capturing all the action with incar footage and filming from around the circuit. Don't forget to follow us with live updates on NSW Touring Production cars face book page.