Sandown Park - Shannons Nationals - September 2019
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Thread: Sandown Park - Shannons Nationals - September 2019

  1. #1
    1000+ Posts Fordman's Avatar
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    Default Sandown Park - Shannons Nationals - September 2019

    Mainly to see a TCR event, last weekend my wife and I flew to Melbourne from Perth to attend the Shannons Nationals meeting at Sandown Park. We took a couple of extra days to be tourists in Melbourne CBD, and took trains to and from Sandown Park.

    I had not previously been aware of the Shannons Nationals as they do not include WA in the series, understandably because it is run as a "low cost" series, and travelling to WA just isn't feasible. The other thing I learnt, is that CAMS themselves run these meetings, not just oversee the local club as is usual. In my opinion, CAMS have done a great job in providing a platform for some minor categories to compete in a "national" series without the full commercialisation of the big promoted race meetings.

    As we were making this fairly long trip, we decided to purchase tickets to the Morris Finance Drivers Club, basically a corporate area also run by CAMS, partly in case the weather turned nasty we would be in relative comfort. It was a good decision, and I would recommend it to anyone wanting a bit better than hanging over the fence and queuing for hamburgers, especially if one has flown in with no capacity for taking chairs, lunch, etc. The 3 day ticket was $250 (so roughly $85 per day) which covered gate entry, seating behind glass at the top of the grandstand, tea/coffee all day, morning tea and lunch served, and also grid walks for the TCR and S5000 race starts, good value we both agreed after spending 3 days watching motor racing in relative comfort.

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    The racing was good, I found the TCR races to be as good as I expected, they have great noise and look fast. They had 17 cars on track, and are expecting 25-30 next year, which will make for fantastic racing.

    The S5000 class debut on this weekend was a bonus, as it was not something I expected to see. The other classes racing were Production Cars, Endurance sports cars, Porsches, and Super3 V8s, but my main interest was the TCRs and in particular the Renault Meganes, which got a podium in one race, and went ok but not at the front of the field. They are still in development so hopefully more to come.

    Earlier today, the Monday after the meeting, I teamed up with old mate KenFuego and we visited the GRM faciliity where the Renault TCRs are maintained and where the S5000 cars have been manufactured, with many in-house components, Australian made Holinger transaxles, and imported composite chassis tubs and Ford 5 litre engines.

    Photos of the weekend in this album:

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/2NccZ8ehER4NfTDQ6

    Cheers
    Fordman.
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  2. #2
    COL
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    Thanks for sharing your weekend Fordman, looks like a great event there at Sandown
    Regards Col

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    Ditto with Col. Fantastic shots. Great you were able to access the pits and the grid as well as GRM facility. Watched the series at Sandown on SBS on Sunday but the S5000 race was a fizzer finishing under the safety car after a big prang by Alex Davidson on the back straight. Fortunately he was OK. Only one Megane was running on Sunday (Moffat) and he went from third on the grid back to finish a bit further back. Renault have a bit of work to do to get up the front consistently.

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    Yes, unfortunately the crash caused the track to be closed for about an hour before the next race could be held. The S5000 format saw 2 qualifying races prior to the main, I don't know if they were on SBS, but we did get to see them racing a full race. We saw the car closeup at GRM, left hand side suspension and body panels u/s but main tub thought to be OK. It's the 4th car back from the window in the last 2 photos. It was good to see the local manufacture of these technical components.

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    1000+ Posts bowie's Avatar
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    Glad you had fun!

    Motor sport is good!

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    1000+ Posts Fordman's Avatar
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    Here's a few short videos taken at the start of one of the TCR races.
    They barked at the exhaust a bit more than I expected, being turbo engines, pretty good sound actually.
    No points for video quality, just the phone camera! But if you pause the cars driving out of their pit, they look ok.

    YouTube – TCRs leaving the pits:
    https://youtu.be/Hpoi4vLoLTw

    YouTube – TCRs Start Warm Up Lap:
    https://youtu.be/kFMFyPpeeg8

    YouTube – TCR race in progress (short video):
    https://youtu.be/zauzoKzbcDk

    As you can see, the VIP tickets got us pretty close to the action for TCR (and S5000 also).

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