R.I.P John Surtees

A statement from the Surtees Family

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of our husband and father, John Surtees CBE.

John, ‪83, was admitted to St Georges Hospital, London in February with an existing respiratory condition and after a short period in intensive care he passed away peacefully this afternoon. His wife, Jane and daughters, Leonora and Edwina were by his side.

John was a loving husband, father, brother and friend. He was also one of the true greats of motorsport and continued to work tirelessly up until recently with The Henry Surtees Foundation and Buckmore Park Kart Circuit.

We deeply mourn the loss of such an incredible, kind and loving man as well as celebrate his amazing life. He has set a very real example of someone who kept pushing himself at his peak and one who continued fighting until the very end.

We would like to thank all the staff at St George's Hospital and The East Surrey Hospital for their professionalism and support during this difficult time for us. Thank you also to all of those who have sent their kind messages in recent weeks.

Funeral details will be announced in due course.

12 Hour Run and Done, Whincup, Lowndes, Vilander Win

The #88 Maranello Motorsport Ferrari 488 GT3 of Toni Vilander, Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes has secured victory in the 2017 Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.

The final hour was nothing short of intense for the front-runners of the field, full of drama, crashes and more for a number of the top four. See below for more details.

Taking victory in the classes were the #88 (Liqui-Moly GT3 Pro-Pro), the #12 Competition Motorsports powered by Ice Break Porsche (BRM Watches GT3 Pro-AM), the #912 Walkinshaw GT3 Porsche (Rydges Bathurst GT3 AM), the #21 Steve Richards Motorsport Porsche (myPlates Class B GT3), the #91 MARC Cars Australia Focus V8 (Racer Industries Class I) and the #19 PROsport Performance Porsche Cayman PRO (Avis Class C).

Thomas is the Master

The Wingless Sprints returned in big numbers to Sydney Speedway with throttle stomper Dean Thomas taking an emphatic win. Jason Bates and Daniel Flood rounded out the top three.

Like the Late Models, the Wingless main event ran virtually trouble free and put on a good show. Harley Smee and Mark Blyton completed the top five. There was a heart stopping moment for Mark Blyton when his son, Marshall, bicycled in front of him. Marshall recovered to finish seventh.

There was heartbreak for both Sean Mayo and Sean Dicker when both of them became tangled up on the opening lap and being forced to retire.

A Main Results:

1. Dean Thomas

2. Jason Bates

3. Daniel Flood

4. Harley Smee

5. Mark Blyton

6. Troy Carey

7. Marshall Blyton

8. Leighton O’Brien

9. Jarrad Rust

10. Peter Granger

11. Jamie Dicker

12. Darryl Marshall

13. Sam Louttit

14. Jamison Blyton

15. Zac Pacchiarotta

16. Nick Tatnell

17. John McRae

18. Wayne Arnold

19. Darren Dalton

20. Kristopher Johnson (DNF)

21. Michael Sammut (DNF)

22. Sean Mayo (DNF)

23. Sean Dicker (DNF)

24. Mitchell O’Brien (DNF)

Mountain comes alive as teams arrive

MOUNT PANORAMA has burst into life as the best teams from Australia and the world descend on the famous circuit ahead of the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 hour this weekend.

A majority of teams are now on site at the famous circuit, spending today setting up pit garages and preparing cars ahead of pre-event scrutineering and first practice early on Friday morning.

Five-time DTM champion Bernd Schneider, who won the 2013 12-hour race, returns this year with HTP Motorsport – joining Mathias Lauda, Paul Dalla Lana and Pedro Lamy in a Mercedes AMG GT3.

“I’m really, really happy to have the chance to drive here again, especially with our new GT,” Schneider said.

“I hope that we can have a lot of fun and enjoy the 12 Hour. It is a tough competition with that car and one of the best tracks in the world. It is just fantastic. Definitely it is one of the most challenging race circuits in the world, a bit like Nurburgring Nordscleife.

“I think every race driver, it is something special to be at Bathurst. As a professional racing driver you have to do it once in your life.”

Schneider said he was expecting strong competition this weekend – especially from within the AMG stable.

“I think we have a few cars that are strong in the field. Especially our team partners are really strong and have a good chance.

“Depending a little on the BoP (Balance of Performance) – at Bathurst you need a lot of power and I think the driver line up and car wise we are in good shape.

“The weather forecast is not straightforward with some thunderstorms for Sunday. At the moment we are not thinking about success, we are looking forward to driving on the track again and see how the car works.”

The field is a mixture of cars from Australia and abroad, with Switzerland-based team R-Motorsport making a return visit to the Mountain this year with a pair of Aston Martin entries.

Driver and team partner Florian Kamelger said he was ready for his team’s return to Bathurst.

“(We are) Excited for the Bathurst 12 Hour and Australia is a spot where we very much love to come back and it is our third time and first time with two cars,” he said.

“On one car we have the factory drivers of Aston Martin Racing – with Darren Turner on the car. Together with me and Marcus Langstrasse, a race driver out of Germany.

“We are very excited to be here – setting up and settling in, meeting all the people we know and the friends we made over the time. Everything is perfect.”

“Coming into Bathurst from the east, then you see the Mountain with the writing with Mt Panorama on it you are happy and looking forward to the weekend. It is absolutely special.”

The two teams that duelled for victory in the race last year will assume positions at the opposite ends of pit lane this weekend – Tekno Autosports parking their pair of McLaren 650S GT3s at pit exit, while Nissan Motorsport is located at the opposite end of the pit lane.

TEKNO has also confirmed the defending winners will sport No. 1 on their car this year.

Teams and drivers continue preparations tomorrow (Thursday, 2 February) ahead of official practice commencing on Friday morning.

Kane shines but Grimson and Doherty push hard

Queensland sedan star Darren Kane scored a convincing win in the 40 lap NSW Dirt Muscle late Model Championship at Sydney Speedway.

Kane took the lead around mid-race distance and survived a number of late race restarts to record the championship win.

The opening twenty circuits ran uninterrupted and at one stage looked like the forty laps would run non-stop, however yellow lights peppered the final run home.

Second to the line was Darryl Grimson and veteran David Doherty came home in third. Defending NSW Champion Ben Nicastri placed fourth and Clayton Pyne finished a creditable fifth.

Earlier in the night Victorian competitor Gary Bryans needed medical attention.  After taking the green in his first heat of the night, Bryans felt uneasy going down the back straight.   He returned to the pits where his crew and onlookers could clearly see he was suffering from heat exhaustion.  

It had been a 40 plus day and the heat hadn't dropped by race time.  Gary spend 3 hours receiving medical attention and on return to his car and looked remarkably better.  We wish him and his family a safe drive back to Victoria.

The Late Model A-Main results were:

1. Darren Kane

2. Darryl Grimson

3. David Doherty

4. Ben Nicastri

5. Clayton Pyne

6. Nathan Disney

7. Daniel Barton

8. Brad Giffen

9. Jessica Cassidy

10. Ed Borg

11. Bruce McKenzie

12. Tim Bink

13. Michael Hickey (DNF)

14. Barry Kelleher (DNF)

15. Robert Carrig (DNF)

16. Joel Carrig (DNF)

17. Wade Carter (DNF)

18. Katelyn Hickey (DNF)

19. Todd Bayley (DNF)

20. Ryan Fenech (DNF)

21. Daniel Moon (DNS)

22. Gary Bryans (DNS)


Australia’s largest ever speedway sidecar race meeting will be held at Kurri Kurri Speedway this Saturday night (04 February 2017). Never before have so many divisions of sidecars competed on the one program.

The event is being organized by Darrin Treloar in association with the Kurri Kurri Speedway Club as a tribute to Darrin’s father who was a top class speedway sidecar rider himself.

The Aircom Group Garry Treloar Roll the Dice will feature sixteen of Australia’s best sidecar competitors in 20 qualifying heats culminating in a B and A Final as well as events for Junior Sidecars, Vincent sidecars and low line sidecars.

“There have never been as many different sidecars on the one race program,” said Kurri Kurri Speedway Club President, Peter Campton. “Our Club is always keen to support sidecar racing and we are very happy to work with Darrin [Treloar] to present this meeting. It is a great boost for the sport.”

“Dad was a great inspiration for me and the Treloar family is delighted to have the chance to pay tribute to him in this way,” said Darrin.”We want to make this meeting a success with the intention of making it an annual event. Dad had a set of dice on all his racing leathers, so we reckoned ‘Roll the Dice’ was pretty appropriate.”

Darrin Treloar is unquestionably Australia’s most successful speedway sidecar rider. He is the current FIM World Speedway Sidecar Champion, the current Australian Speedway Sidecar Champion and the current QLD, NSW and South Australia Speedway Sidecar Champion.

There is a strong local presence in Treloar’s outstanding record by way of his passenger, Blake Cox. Cox lives in Lake Macquarie and has been Treloar’s passenger for the last three speedway seasons.

“Just like the Treloars, my family has been in sidecars for many years,” said Cox. “I tried a few other sports but when the offer came to partner Darrin, I went with it.”

All four members of the Cox family will be filling the ‘passenger’ role on Saturday night. Father of the family, Glen, will dust off the leathers and compete with long time partner, Grant Bond. Blake will be passenger for Darrin Treloar, whilst Brady Cox will partner Hayden Bond and Liam Cox will pair with Klae Hobbs.

For the very first time Junior Sidecars will compete on the same program as the senior riders. Albeit on the junior inner track, six young riders and their passengers will get the thrill of racing on the big stage with the winning combination receiving the inaugural ‘GT’ Cup.

The barking roar of the famous Vincent engines is certain to bring back memories for long time speedway fans and the reappearance of the ‘low line’ sidecars is also in tribute to Garry Treloar. He and his brother Ricky were amongst the first riders to compete on these custom built vehicles that came into vogue in place of the Vincent style machines.

A parade of the sixteen competitors in the main event in the back of Mustang convertibles will get the night underway at 5:15pm followed by the presentation of medallions by the Treloar family to all competitors. Racing commences at 6:30pm.