2010 MINI Challenge – Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

With one round to go, defending series champ Paul Stokell picked a good time to bag his first Round win at the Gold Coast last month. That puts him very much within striking distance of Chris Alajajian, who has led the 2010 MINI Challenge all year. Alajajian did manage to win Race 1 on the Gold Coast, but suffered car issues thereafter.

Stokell finished all three races on the podium, but it was his Race 2 win that will go down in the history books. His winning margin was a mere 0.014 seconds, thanks to a last corner lunge to snatch the race from rising star Sean Carter. You can see highlights of that race after the break.

Glenn Seton returned for another drive in the UberStar Car and became the first driver to secure a race win in car #50 by taking out Race 3.

So, the final MINI Challenge race to be held in Australia for the foreseeable future will take place in Sydney next weekend. Let’s hope it’s a great spectacle with some good clean racing.

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

2010 MINI Challenge - Round 6, Gold Coast

Seto Wins Race 3 As Stokell Shines In Surfers Sun

Paul Stokell has won his first overall round for the 2010 Hertz MINI Challenge – delivered by Pizza Capers series at this weekend’s Armor All Gold Coast 600.

DecoRug Racing’s Stokell was the most consistent performer for the weekend finishing with a third, second and first place result for the three races as he took top honours from V8 Supercar legend Glenn Seton with Gold Coast MINI dealer Beric Lynton rounding out the top-3 for the weekend.

Overall championship standings will now come down to the wire in Homebush with series leader Chris Alajajian having a less than sub-par performance compared to his usual winning ways. After taking victory in race 1 things didn’t go to plan for the Sydney driver as he was forced to retire with suspension damage this morning after collecting some debris on circuit.

Seton gave the Pizza Capers crew plenty to smile about from the 35th floor of the Mantra Sun City as he stormed home with a final lap of brilliance to give the Pizza Capers MINI R56 its first ever race win since the UberStar concept was introduced at the start of 2009. The legend driver carved up front-runners Stokell and Sean Carter on the very last lap today, coming from third to pass both drivers on the second last corner and cross the chequered flag victorious for race 3.

ON TIME EARTH driver Sean Carter put in a sterling effort this weekend with two podiums in races 2 and 3 to the finish the event fourth overall and, more importantly, close the gap to 13 points on rival Peter McNiven as the pair continue to battle for third place honours in this year’s MINI Challenge driver standings.

The star driver for the event was racing debutant Troy Adams who finished each race inside the top-8 with an incredible sixth place finish today despite limited racing experience and no experience in MINI Challenge racing. The Betta Computers driver will be hopeful to contest future events after such a fine performance on the Gold Coast.

Most improved for the weekend was MINI Challenge debutant Allan Jarvis in the iseek entry as he moved his way up the leader-board each day to finish the final race today with a personal best of eighth.

After some tough judging the award for best presented grid girls went to the CXC team of Dave Thomas closely followed by the Pizza Capers ‘Caperets’ and the #25 Cook Racing girls. Unfortunately for Brendan Cook this was a rather forgetful 50th race event for the Transquip Hire driver with a string of issues over the weekend seeing him only finish one race – race 1 – in 10th position.

The newly formed 2.96 kilometre track was extremely well suited to the MINI Challenge with the series experiencing its closest race in history on Saturday as Stokell pipped Carter by a mere 0.014 seconds. This was backed-up by some phenomenal action today as Seton really shone in what was some extremely well received racing by the entire Armor All 600 crowd.

MINI Challenge Round 6 Winner Paul Stokell said:
“It’s great to finally notch up our first round win for the season and more importantly we have closed the gap to Chris [Alajajian] in the overall standings to at least give ourselves a shot of winning the title at Homebush in December. It would have been nice to take the win in today’s race as well but I just made a small mistake on the last lap which was more than enough of a sniff for someone like Seto [Seton] to capitalise.

Big thanks to the team for equipping me with a faultless car once again and also to Bill [Gremos] and the DecoRug crew. Bill did a fine job this weekend too and hopefully we can do more events together as a 2-car DecoRug Racing outfit.

It’s all or nothing now so bring on Homebush!”

Pizza Capers UberStar Driver and Race 3 Glenn Seton said:
“I had a much better run here, than in Townsville and a big thanks to the Pizza Capers team for providing me with a strong car all weekend. To finish second for the round is a good feeling considering the incident on Friday which put me right down to the tail end for Saturday’s race. I knew I had to push hard today to catch the front-runners and I just attacked a bit harder and went in deeper on those final few laps which allowed me to get close enough to the front two guys and get a good run on the inside of them on the last sector. I think the car really suited this track and we saw that in some exciting and clean racing all weekend so hopefully the MINI Challenge will be back on the streets of Surfers Paradise for next year’s event.”

Hertz MINI Challenge – delivered by Pizza Capers is the most exciting, premium single-make series in the world. The seven round series runs as an official support category of the V8 Supercar Championship Series.

The seventh and final round of Hertz MINI Challenge – delivered by Pizza Capers takes crew to Homebush for the Sydney 500 – December 3-5.

2010 Hertz MINI Challenge – delivered by Pizza Capers
Round 6 results

Race 1

  1. Chris Alajajian
  2. Beric Lynton
  3. Paul Stokell

Race 2

  1. Paul Stokell
  2. Sean Carter
  3. Beric Lynton

Race 3

  1. Glenn Seton
  2. Paul Stokell
  3. Sean Carter

2010 Australian MINI Challenge Championship Table – Top 10

Pos Driver Team Pts
1 Chris ALAJAJIAN JAX Quickfit Tyres 691
2 Paul STOKELL DecoRug Racing 662.5
3 Peter McNIVEN Supercharge Batteries 572
4 Sean CARTER Plan4Growth/ON TIME EARTH 559
5 Gavin YORTT Squawking Magpie Wines 508.5
6 Brendan COOK Transquip Hire/ABC Autogear 355
7 Glenn SETON Pizza Capers 322
8 Beric LYNTON Bruce Lynton MINI Garage 309
9 Chris WOOTTON www.thesupportersclub.com 283
10 John MODYSTACH Prosurv Racing 252

2010 MINI Challenge calendar