Cabarita delivers a sense of deja-vu with three repeat winners
Rnd#4 2019 Penrite V8 Superboat Championships
Tweed Coast Jet Sprint Club, Cabarita Beach, NSW
10-11 August, 2019
The second Cabarita round of the 2019 Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championships delivered some outstanding racing and some very tight battles right through the field, but despite some outstanding racing and some new faces on the podium, the outright winners reflected those of the June round at the popular Tweed Coast Jet Sprint Club.
Ultimately Slade Stanley remained untouchable in the Unlimited Superboat class, only New Zealander Rob Coley could get close, but he was still two seconds shy of Stanley in the final qualifier, before Stanley stepped up the pace again in the final to take the win by a staggering five seconds over Glenn Roberts.
Paul Kelly continued his methodical demolition of the 400-Class field for his fourth win of the year, but he was forced to step up the pace through the finals as former champion Ben Hathaway and UIM World Series sensation Justin Roylance worked their way into the outright equation, Kelly flawless in the final rotation to put the result out of question, whilst his opponents revelled in the fact that they’d closed down the gap to the mighty orange ‘4Zero Racing’ machine.
The LS-Class again delivered an impressive array of boats, eight teams entered for the fourth round, but whilst they applied pressure early to an ailing Kyle Elphinstone, they were unable to stem the flow of wins for the ‘Blackout Racing’ team, Elphinstone leading a repeat Cabarita podium lockout to take the win from the impressive Dwayne Mezzadri and David Bray.
The action for round four actually started ahead of qualifying with local star Peter Monger rolling Phil Weinthal’s ‘Black Dog Racing’ machine at the top of the circuit on the run home during his practice lap, he and daughter Cody inverted in the channel, with both out of the boat quickly, the crash so impressive it made a cameo appearance in Brisbane’s ‘Courier Mail’ on Monday morning..
By the time opening qualifying kicked off though, things looked very much like they had done two months prior with Slade Stanley and Paul Kelly continuing to set the pace in their respective classes, whilst in the emerging LS-Class, points leader Kyle Elphinstone struggled to match the pace of the front-runners early, a head cold revealed as his only major setback, but by then, the Saturday benchmark had been set by new rival Dwayne Mezzadri.
Despite admitting that he hadn’t tried anything special on his practice lap, Slade Stanley continued his blistering pace in qualifying to set the bar at a 42.410 by the close of the first three rounds, even electing to sit out the final session for the day to concentrate on a leaking jet unit, whilst behind him his rivals squabbled over the minor placings.
Rob Coley emerged as next quickest, despite being more than a second and a half slower than Stanley, with the big local crowd on their feet as Daniel deVoigt put in a giant-slaying effort to be third fastest for the opening day, having out-qualified Phonsy Mullan, Darryl Hutton, Mick Carroll and Glenn Roberts in the process!
Mullan admitted that his naturally-aspirated 583ci machine was struggling having only elected at the last minute to make the trip north with business commitments keeping him from his usual pre-event preparation, but typically he was extracting everything he could from what he had at hand, but clearly frustrated to see the ongoing pace of Stanley at the top of the timesheets.
Stanley endured a relatively lethargic start to Sunday morning to set a best of 42.210 to be just a second and a half faster than the charging Mick Carroll who was back on song after a horror navigational run through Saturday’s sessions.
It was the closest anyone would get to the former Group A world champion as Stanley spent the remainder of the day in the 40s, his Q5 40.950 two seconds clear of the next best qualifier, Rob Coley in the ex-Peter Caughey machine.
Behind them things were much more evenly matched, with Daryl Hutton moving to within striking distance of the podium in the final qualifier to set a 43.600 and breathe a sigh of relief after failing to turn an accountable lap on Saturday with a technical issue with the boat, something he admitted had been almost impossible to trace without the aid of a laptop – enter former rival Paul Gaston who provided Hutton with the coils off ‘Heatseeker’ – and he was good to go again on Sunday..
Mick Carroll was just a tenth of a second slower than Hutton, but with Phonsy Mullan, Glenn Roberts and Daniel deVoigt all within tenths of a second of each other, paving the way for an epic battle for the podium in the finals.
The 400-Class battle too saw some stunning laps by the contenders, with at one point just a tenth of a second separating title rivals Paul Kelly and Ben Hathaway, whilst there were some great drives further down the timesheets from the likes of Mark Garlick and Greg Harriman, both of whom had found some serious time between the two Cabarita rounds.
At the point though, very little had changed with Paul Kelly leading the field through qualifying as he had done for much of the season. Behind him though there had been change, Ben Hathaway – who suffered from an intermittent electrical fault in June (sorted in part by V8 Superboats’ resident ‘Mr Fixit’ – Paul Kelly) – was finally able to turn laps and build data, something which had a big effect on Kelly’s pace.
Separated by three tenths of a second in the opening qualifier, Hathaway found a stunning two seconds in Q2 to hold an advantage of seven tenths of a second over Kelly, whilst behind them both Mark Garlick and Justin Roylance were also making gains.
By Sunday morning though, Kelly was back on top, ultimately setting the fastest qualifying time in the final session to put himself almost a full second clear of Hathaway, with Roylance almost two seconds down in third but mere hundredths faster than reigning champion Mark Garlick.
Brett Thornton was fifth fastest ahead of Greg Harriman, whilst Phil Weinthal overcame Peter Monger’s early setback for the ‘Black Dog Racing’ machine to be the quickest of the locals with the seventh fastest time, a quarter of a second faster than Monger who was back behind the wheel of the all green ‘Mongrel’.
Emerging as a category capable of keeping the fans on their feet with an impressive array of entries, the LS-Class provided plenty of action through the qualifiers, not the least because of the emerging battle between points leader Kyle Elphinstone and rookie Dwayne Mezzadri.
Mezzadri held the early advantage as Elphinstone battled a head cold which saw him card a DNF and a navigational error in the first two qualifiers, before finding form in the final two sessions to lower the bar to a 51.740, 1.4-seconds clear of Mezzadri who had led through the first three rotations.
Behind them a great battle was brewing between Lawrence Howlett (Drop Bear), David Bray (Bear Necessities), Kyle Reynolds (Red Rum) and Robert Westerink (The Contractor), the four boats covered by just 1.2-seconds by the close of the five qualifying rounds, with any one of them capable of making the final – it was game on!
The big question ahead of the Unlimited Superboat finals was just how much Slade Stanley could win by, and whether he could improve on the pace he’d shown through qualifying. As to whether anyone could match him, that was almost a forgone conclusion.
Ultimately he would go faster, although his Top 12 and Top 6 finals times were within four tenths of a second of his Q5 best, whilst for his rivals, they were left without an answer, Glenn Roberts going closest in the Top 12, but even that was 2.6-seconds shy of Stanley’s best, before the ‘Hazardous08’ driver extended the advantage again in the final to a blistering 40.18.
Stanley was quickest through the Top 12 final to set the mark at a 40.740, Glenn Roberts then upping the pace to go P2 (43.360) with Rob Coley (43.510) and Mick Carroll (43.760) all within reach of the podium.
Phonsy Mullan also found some more speed to be fifth (44.120) and within reach of the leaders, whilst Daryl Hutton was lamenting a late change looking for some more push from his new twin-turbo powerplant, a move which cost him time and a position in the second final after Daniel deVoigt again upstaged him with a 45.270 to Hutton’s 45.420.
Stanley again set the pace in the second final with a 40.540, with Glenn Roberts continuing his impressive form in the big-block ‘Blown Budget’ (43.700) to out-qualify Mick Carroll by an amazing seven one hundredths of a second, with Mullan again finding pace before falling an agonising one tenth of a second shy of a berth in the final, joining Daniel deVoigt and a frustrated Rob Coley on the trailer to watch the final round play out.
Ultimately it was Stanley who went on to control the pace and the round to card his third consecutive win of the year with a pace that few had anticipated. His 40.180 in the final was the fastest of the weekend and more than 2.7-seconds faster than the next quickest boat on aggregate times..
Glenn Roberts ended his weekend with a wild ride across an island before going on to set the second fastest time, more than five seconds down on Stanley, whilst the luckless Mick Carroll ended his run early after a technical failure which saw the engine out of the boat within hours of returning home to Adelaide.
Whilst Stanley continued his winning ways, so too did local favourite Paul Kelly, the popular auto electrician claiming his fourth consecutive win of the year after topping all three finals, although the event ended with a warning for the ‘4Zero Racing’ team.. Justin Roylance was closing in!
The opening final saw Kelly set his fourth consecutive lap in the mid 44s, all four laps covered by just 22 one hundredths of a second, a measure of just how consistent he had become.
After playing with setup and a new set of blades through the qualifiers, Justin Roylance elected to go back to a proven setup and focus on driving in the finals, putting the ‘Outlaw67’ machine second in the opening final, just half a second shy of Kelly and more than a second up on Hathaway.
Behind them the opening final saw Phil Weinthal, Peter Monger, Darrin Kesper, Ron O’Day, Brendan Doyle and Mark Connolly back on the trailer despite the group improving their pace over qualifying.
Kelly again set the pace in the second final, lowering the mark to a 44.220, whilst Ben Hathaway found a full second to take P2 from Roylance by just four one hundredths of a second, Roylance having dropped a quarter of a second over his Top 12 best.
That left Mark Garlick and Brett Thornton out of the final despite both having set their fastest laps of the weekend, the pair joined by Greg Harriman who had enjoyed one of his best runs in recent years before being thwarted by a late navigational error.
Kelly dropped four one hundredths of a second over his best to set a 44.260 in the final, whilst Ben Hathaway was forced to concede second after Justin Roylance put in his best of the event to fall just half a second shy of Kelly and put the field on notice that there was a new deputy in town..
Sadly the finals pressure saw a number of early failures in the LS-Class, most notable was Kyle Reynolds who came off at the notorious ‘Benny’s corner’ to put the nose of ‘Red Rum’ into the bank. He was joined on the trailer by Paul Hill (Slicer) and Lawrence Howlett (Drop Bear) who was ruing an almost certain visit to the final after his failure to complete his run.
Kyle Elphinstone set the pace in the first final (52.060) by a second and a half over Dwayne Mezzadri with David Bray just eclipsing Robert Westerink.
Elphinstone was again the benchmark in the Top 6 final, improving to his best of the weekend (51.360), whilst Mezzadri also found pace, Bray again third to cement his second consecutive Superboat final, with Robert Westerink and Graham Reynolds missing the cut.
As he had done in the opening three rounds of the season, Kyle Elphinstone put the impressive black and orange ‘Blackout Racing’ machine on top of the time sheets for the final rotation, his weekend best of 51.270 more than a second and a half clear of the impressive Mezzadri, whilst David Bray improved his championship points haul again to be classified second overall at the close of four rounds.
The Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championships heads back to the challenging Griffith circuit in the New South Wales Riverina for round five of the season in a day/night round on 21 September, an event that is set to lay the foundations of the 2019 championship.
Rnd#4 2019 Penrite V8 Superboat Championships
Tweed Coast Jet Sprint Club, Cabarita Beach, NSW
10-11 August, 2019
TOP 3 FINAL
- 08. Slade Stanley/Vanessa Stanley (Hazardous) – 40.180
- 888. Glenn Roberts/Tiarna McGifford (Blown Budget) – 45.210
- 41. Mick Carroll/Daniel Kelly (Excalibur) – DNF
400-Class (Group A)
- 40. Paul Kelly/Naomi Gow (4Zero Racing) – 44.260
- 67. Justin Roylance/Tracy Little (Outlaw) – 44.710
- 2. Ben Hathaway/Michelle Hodge (Warren & Brown Tools Racing) – 45.190
- 219. Kyle Elphinstone/Beau Warden (Blackout Racing) – 51.270
- 380. Dwayne Mezzadri/Mitch Curtis (Unleashed) – 52.810
- 85. David Bray/Jess Thatcher (Bear Neccesities) – 55.230
TOP 6 FINAL
- 08. Slade Stanley/Vanessa Stanley (Hazardous) – 40.450
- 888. Glenn Roberts/Tiarna McGifford (Blown Budget) – 43.700
- 41. Mick Carroll/Daniel Kelly (Excalibur) – 43.770
- 1. Phonsy Mullan/Madeline Chorley (RAMJET) – 43.870
- 86. Daniel deVoigt/Vicki Burrell (Devo Racing) – 45.700
- 111. Rob Coley/Cody Munro (Poison Ivy) – DNF
400-Class (Group A)
- 40. Paul Kelly/Naomi Gow (4Zero Racing) – 44.220
- 2. Ben Hathaway/Michelle Hodge (Warren & Brown Tools Racing) – 45.480
- 67. Justin Roylance/Tracy Little (Outlaw) – 45.520
- 1. Mark Garlick/Kerry Garlick (Grumpy On Edge) – 46.670
- 53. Brett Thornton/Lyn Thornton (2Obsessed) – 47.170
- 360. Greg Harriman/Sammy Leonard (Pink Boots Racing) – DNF
- 219. Kyle Elphinstone/Beau Warden (Blackout Racing) – 51.360
- 380. Dwayne Mezzadri/Mitch Curtis (Unleashed) – 52.520
- 85. David Bray/Jess Thatcher (Bear Neccesities) – 53.960
- 64. Robert Westerink/Ben Gillespie (The Contractor) – 57.000
- 17B. Graham Reynolds/Chloe Reynolds (Red Rum) – 86.600
- 14. Lawrence Howlett/Karen Howlett (Drop Bear) – DNS
2019 Penrite Australian V8 Superboat Championships – Series Points
Unlimited Superboat (after round four of seven)
- Slade Stanley (Hazardous) – 134-points, 2. Phonsy Mullan (RAMJET) – 121, 3. Mick Carroll (Excalibur) – 120, 4. Rob Coley (Poison Ivy) – 107, 4. Glenn Roberts (Blown Budget) – 107, 6. Daryl Hutton (Phoenix Lubricants) – 92, 7. Daniel deVoigt (Devo Racing) – 86, 8. Scott Krause (KAOS) – 53, 9. Michael Cunningham (True Blue) – 48, 10. Paul Burgess (Daly Transport) – 40, 11. Starr Kopa (Wikid) – 10, 12. Matt Foote (Wikid) – 0
400-Class (Group A) (after round four of seven)
- Paul Kelly (4Zero Racing) – 144-points, 2. Ben Hathaway (Warren & Brown Tools Racing) – 120, 3. Brett Thornton (2Obsessed) – 108, 4. Justin Roylance (Outlaw67) – 99, 5. Mark Garlick (Grumpy on Edge) – 96, 6. Jody Ely (Rampage) – 93, 7. Greg Harriman (Pink Boots Racing) – 78, 8. Brendan Doyle (The Girlfriend) – 72, 9. Peter Monger (Mongrel) – 60, 10. Ron O’Day (Agrovation) – 56, 10. Phil Weinthal (Black Dog) – 56, 12. Hugh Gilchrist (Pink Boots Racing) – 44, 13. Darrin Kesper (Let’s Boogie) – 34, 14. Daniel Salter (The Hustler) – 30, 15. Andrew Medlicott (Gone Nutz Again) – 12
LS-Class (after round three of seven)
- Kyle Elphinstone (Blackout Racing) – 144-points, 2. David Bray (Bear Necessities) – 84, 3. Graham Reynolds (Red Rum) – 78, 3. Robert Westerink (The Contractor) – 78, 5. Lawrence Howlett (Drop Bear) – 74, 6. Dwayne Mezzadri (Unleashed) – 66, 7. Andrew Medlicott (Gone Nutz Again) – 53, 8. Kyle Reynolds (Red Rum) – 48, 9. Paul Hill (Slicer) – 44, 10. Rob Johnston (Almost There) – 28
2019 Penrite Australian V8 Superboat Championships
Rnd#1 – Spitwater Arena, Keith, SA – 23 March
Rnd#2 – Temora, NSW – 4 May (Colin Parish Memorial)
Rnd#3 – Tweed Coast, NSW – 15-16 June
Rnd#4 – Tweed Coast, NSW – 10-11 August
Rnd#5 – Griffith, NSW – 21 September
Rnd#6 – Temora, NSW – 19 October
Rnd#7 – Tweed Coast, NSW – 16-17 November [FINAL]
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