Champions Chat: Chris Lillis and Nathan Callaghan

The Shannons Nationals caught up with 2018 Australian Production Car Series Class A2 winners Nathan Callaghan and Chris Lillis, who won the class for the second consecutive year.

Congratulations on the title last year, there must have been some big celebrations?

Nathan Callaghan:  Thank you. No big celebrations because they had the end of year presentations straight after, so we just went there and had a couple of drinks at the RSL at Phillip Island. It was a nice place. It was low key because we had to go straight back to WA.

Chris Lillis: Everyone who does motor sport knows there is a lot of time, money and effort going into a win for a relatively amateur team. To do it two years in a row is a good thing because we are small team so it awesome.

 

Was there any moments that stick out to you?

NC: At Eastern Creek, we broke a diff during the race but our crew managed to change it in just 24 minutes which is pretty good, especially during in the middle of the race while it’s hot. Sandown at the start of the year was also good because the car really suits Sandown and it was nice to be competitive outright, as well as have a fast car.

 

Any moments you’d rather forget?

CL: Our worst moment was definitely in Queensland. We should have dominated but we had a bad fuel leak and pretty much nearly lost the car. Once again our crew fixed the car quickly and we got back out on track. Unfortunately, we ended up finishing one lap short from winning the round which was a real shame. I think that is what made it the hardest, being so close yet so far.

 

Who would you like to thank?

CL: Obviously our sponsors Revolution Roofing, Sidchrome and Cachet Homes for all the support they provided in 2018, as well as staying with us for another season this year.

NC: For me, mostly Chris because it’s mostly his car and his operation and I just sort of drive. Without Chris, I wouldn’t be able to do it. We’ve had a few different crews throughout the year but a few solid crew that come every round and they’ve been great. Also just the class itself and Iain Sherrin who runs the category, they’ve done really well with the whole group of categories so that’s been really good.

 

How could you summarise the year?

NC: This is the first time I’ve ever done an entire national series, so it’s pretty much been a lifelong dream. I’ve done it now which is great and to win as well is even better. We did win last year but we only did three rounds. With winning after attending every round was something I’ve wanted to do forever.

 

Plans for this year?

CL: We are building a new VF Clubsport for the first round of the Australian Production Cars with plans to compete in the Australian Production Cars’ new Australian muscle production cars class. We have really invested in the VF so it will be good to bring it out for the Eastern Creek round.

Also winning back-to-back championships helped us pick up a brand new sponsor in Buildstein for this year which is brilliant.