Shannons ready to shine in Queensland

The Shannons Nationals hits Queensland Raceway this weekend for the fourth round of the 2019 season with seven categories to fight it out on the Ipswich based track.

Headlined by the carsales TCR Australia Series and the Australian Production Cars Series, there is a lot to look forward to when the official action gets underway on Friday afternoon.

Another major talking point ahead of the weekend is the first live demonstration in Queensland of the new S5000, which makes it competitive debut at Sandown in September.

Ahead of the fourth Shannon Nationals taking place on 2 – 4 August, cams.com.au/motorsportaustraliachampionships.com.au has a quick look at each category.

Australian Production Car Series
Entries: 20
Round 3
Series Leader: Grant and Iain Sherrin

The series’ biggest event for the year happens this weekend with the annual Fight in the Night to take centre stage on Saturday night.

Glowing brakes and neon lights add to the theatrics that is the exciting race and with the season reaching its midway point, there is everything to race for.

Last year’s winners Beric Lynton and Tim Leahey return to defend their title, while the Sherrin brothers will be hoping to extend their lead at the top of the standings.

Qualifying: Saturday 11:25–11:40/12:00–12:15
Race 1: Saturday 5:45–8:15am
Race 2: Sunday 10:10–12:40pm

carsales TCR Australia Series
Entries: 18
Round: 4
Series Leader: Will Brown

The carsales TCR Australia Series has been enjoying a solid inaugural season with a number of high quality drivers and manufactures taking part.

A dramatic previous round at The Bend saw Will Brown extend his gap at the top, as well as a number of cars ending up off the track, including an astounding six cars in the second race.

With some moving a shaking occurring within the teams as the season shapes up, the inclusion of international TCR star Jean-Karl Vernay racing for Melbourne Performance Centre should once again bring in the crowds.

Qualifying: Saturday 10:20–10:50am
Race 1: Saturday 2:15–2:45pm
Race 2: Sunday 1:15–1:45pm
Race 3: Sunday 2:20–2:50 pm

Porsche Michelin GT3 Cup Challenge
Entries: 19
Round: 4
Series Leader: Harri Jones

The one-make feeder category has been less prominent on the Shannons Nationals calendar in 2019 but stays on the national stage for its remaining three rounds.

The GT3 Cup Challenge has three drivers in serious contention for the title, with Harri Jones 80 points clear at the top ahead of Max Vidau and Aaron Love, despite each driver claiming one round each.

Vidau and Love need some good fortune to go their way, while Jones would be confident of securing a result in a round that will the see the category celebrate its 200th official race.

Qualifying: Saturday 9:25–9:45am
Race 1: Saturday 12:55–1:15pm
Race 2: Saturday 4:05–4:50pm
Race 3: Sunday 9:40–10:00am

Australian Prototype Series
Entries: 12
Round :3
Series Leader: David Barram

Despite only winning one round so far in the 2019 season, second-year driver David Barram still looks like the man to beat after producing four wins in six races, including a clean sweep in round two.

Piling on the pressure on him is round one winner Mark Short who had a mixed weekend in Phillip Island, while another rookie in Carmelo Bonaventura rounds out the top three, just six points ahead of Daniel Gonzalez.

Like the Australian Production Series, only three rounds remain in the series with reigning champion and local driver Jason Makris needing to beat Barram and make amends for last year.

Qualifying: 9:50–10:10am
Race 1: Saturday 3:35–3:55pm
Race 2: Sunday 9:10–9:30am
Race 3: Sunday 3:35–4:10pm

National Sports Sedans Series
Entries: 11
Round :3
Series Leader: Tony Ricciardello

The battle once again comes down to the veteran and the young gun as 10-time champion Tony Ricciardello leads reigning champion Steven Tamasi after two rounds.

It was a coming of age performance from Jordan Caruso in Adelaide as he managed to secure his first race and round win ahead of the two powerhouses and the rookie will be desperate to prove himself again and beat them.

A win for Ricciardello would make it very difficult for anyone else to take the title away from him, however anything is possible in motor sport.

Qualifying: Friday 2:50–3:10pm
Race 1: Saturday 11:00–11:20am
Race 2: Saturday 3:05–3:25pm
Race 3: Sunday 3:05–3:25pm

Improved Production Racing Association
Entries: 28
Round: 3
Series Leader: Jason Clements

Improved Production Queensland enters its penultimate round this weekend with the equal biggest field of the day

With three of four rounds taking place at Morgan Park, the category visits Queensland Raceway for the only time this year, making it an extremely even playing field and perfect for the second last race of the season.

Both the Over 2 Litre and Under 2 Litre categories have close battles occurring in their respective titles and whoever wins this weekend will be in a nice position for some silverware.

Qualifying: Friday 4:25–4:45pm
Race 1: Saturday 9:00–9:20am
Race 2: Saturday 12:25–12:45pm
Race 3: Sunday 4:20–4:40pm

Series X3 Queensland
Entries: 28
Round: 3
Series Leader: Cameron Wilson

Once again, one of the biggest fields on the grid and the battle at the top is incredibly close with only eight points separating Wilson and 2016 champion Cameron Bartholomew.

Last year Brock Giblin managed to win the round and set up final charge for another title and although he ultimately fell short, it still proved to be decisive round.

Like Improved Production, the category competes at Queensland Raceway for the first and only time this year, adding a little excitement to an already exciting category.

Qualifying: Friday 2:25–2:45pm
Race 1: Saturday 8:30–8:50am
Race 2: Saturday 1:25–1:45 pm
Race 3: Sunday 8:40–9:00