29-31 MARCH 2013
ONE OF THE MOST popular figures in Australian Motorsport, four-time Australian Rally Champion Simon Evans, will return to circuit racing as part of the second round of the Commodore Cup National Series, presented by Menzel Glass, this weekend at Mount Panorama.
The 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010 ARC champion will team with Jeff Watters in the Automobility-sponsored VS Commodore in the series’ first two-driver ‘mini endurance’ Event of the season.
It won’t be Evans’ first start on the Mountain, the Nar Nar Goon (Victoria) resident having previously raced in the Armor All Bathurst 12 Hour – and also in the 2005 Australian Rally Championship round held partially on the access roads within the famous circuit.
Evans and Watters combined to tackle a two-driver Event at Winton two years ago and when Watters called to offer him another steer, Evans ‘Couldn’t say yes quickly enough’.
“I had a ball last time I did Commodore Cup,” he said.
“The competition was really good and everyone seemed to have the right attitude. Jeff goes there to have fun and I go there to have fun – but at the same time we both go there racing to win.
“We really don’t have many expectations about the weekend because it’s very hard to predict anything when it comes to Motorsport,” Evans added.
“But I think we’ll have a great time and that’s the main thing.”
Currently taking a sabbatical from Rallying to focus on his concreting business, Evans said he was always keen to get off the gravel and tackle circuit racing.
“I always joked that I’d become a concreter full time when I grew up, so I guess I’ve grown up – at least for the moment,” he grinned.
“We’re having some time away from Rallying to grow the business but at the same time I’m always open to suggestions when it comes to circuit racing. I quite enjoy it and the last couple of times I’ve raced I have always left with a great impression.
“It’s different from Rallying and a great challenge that I really enjoy.”
Meanwhile, car owner Jeff Watters has suggested that should it rain this weekend, Evans’ would be left with a majority of the driving duties thanks to his massive levels of slippery-surface driving.
“I always seem to do well in the wet,” Evans smiled.
“In fact the first time I drove a Commodore Cup car was in the rain. I really don’t think much about it though it’s always fun hanging the tail out coming out of a corner..”
And whilst the forecast does call for mostly fine conditions this weekend, Watters – who sat out last year’s Commodore Cup title race – said he was super pleased to have someone of Evans’ level along for the ride.
“We’ve dusted off the cobwebs and given him a strict talking to and a ‘you break it, you buy it’ policy this weekend,” Watters joked.
“Simon is a great guy and a fantastic driver and that’s why we have him. We teamed up together in 2009 and had an absolute ball and actually were fairly evenly matched, so he was the first person I rang to see about driving with me.
“There are some fancied combinations this weekend but there are also some pretty big egos to bruise, so we’ll put up a really good fight, I think.”
The Commodore Cup’s second round of 2011 will be made up of two, 45-minute endurance races with a compulsory driver change mid-way through.
The Event has attracted several notable drivers, including V8 Supercar ace and reining Fujitsu series champion Steve Owen, plus V8 Supercar enduro driver and Bathurst Fujitsu series round winner David Russell and another leading V8 driver in Tim Blanchard.
Three entries have been received from the Northern Territory, whilst production car racer Steve Briffa will team with Garry Menell in an ex-Axent Racing VS in their first respective Commodore Cup starts.
The two, 45-minute races will be contested over the Saturday and Sunday of the Bathurst Motor Festival Event, to be held across this Easter long weekend.
COMMODORE CUP NATIONAL SERIES – ROUND 2 – PRESENTED BY MENZEL GLASS
1. Donut King (VS) Adam Beechey / Dean Croswell
6. San Marco Italian Restaurant (VS) Matthew Hayes / Christian D’Agostin
7. Renaissance Homes (VS) Matthew Chick / Scott Andrews
8. Briffa Smash Repairs (VS) Steve Briffa / Garry Menell
10. Castle Concreting (VH) Geoff Cowie / TBA
12. Octane Alley Race Engines (VS) Josh Hughes / Tim Blanchard
14. Aussie Nascar Tours (VH) David Ling / Steven Ling
24. Sports Alive (VS) Tony Bates / David Russell
48. NDD (VS) Geoff Emery / Steve Owen
68. Western General Body Works (VS) Danny Buzadzic / Nick Parker
71. Action Racing (VS) Marcus Zukanovic / Gerard McLeod
77. Adam’s Auto Electrics (VS) Adam Lloyd / Ryan McLeod
85. Jason Domaschenz (VS) Jason Domaschenz / Craig Domaschenz
88. Aerial Motors Racing (VS) Chris Stevenson / Kane Millier
96. Automobility / Aerial Motors (VS) Jeff Watters / Simon Evans
98. Powercorp (VH) Alan Langworthy / Chris Langworthy
99. Westcoast Windows (VS) Ross McGregor / Drew Russell
For more information about the series head to www.commodorecup.com.au.
COMMODORE CUP – POINTS (After Round 1)
1. Tony Bates (Sportsalive.com) 135
2. Marcus Zukanovic (Action Racing) 131
3. Adam Beechey (Donut King Racing) 115
4. Adam Lloyd (Adams Auto Electrics) 114
5. Ross McGregor (Westcoast Widows) 105
6. Geoff Emery (NDD) 103
7. Matt Hayes (San Marco Italian Restaurant) 101
8. Chris Stevenson (Aerial Motors Racing) 99
9. Matt Chick (Renaissance Homes) 99
10. Josh Hughes (Octane Alley) 85
11. Danny Buzadzic (Western General Body Works) 84
12. Graeme Meer (Aquacity Pool & Spa) 81