Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Last Lap Drama Robs Collins Of F5000 Clean Sweep At Teretonga

They say that all good things come to those who wait. But by the 11th lap of the feature 12-lap SAS Autoparts MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series final at Invercargill’s Teretonga Park Raceway this afternoon even three-times former series champion Steve Ross (McRae GM1) had accepted the fact he was going to cross the finish line in second place.

McRae GM1 driver Steve Ross was the surprise winner of the SAS Autoparts MSC NZ F5000 Tasman Cup Revival Series feature race at the first annual George Begg Classic Superfest meeting at Invercargill’s Teretonga Park today. Photo Credit: Fast Company/Richard Dimmock

Yet, just as the flagman put out the last lap board for his benefit, the weekend’s fastest qualifier and runaway winner of the first two SAS Autoparts MSC Series races, Michael Collins, slowed dramatically and pulled off the circuit just after the start/finish line; his race run thanks to a broken half (drive) shaft.

Michael Collins led the race until the last lap when he was forced to pull over and stop by a broken half (drive) shaft.. Photo Credit: Fast Company/Richard Dimmock

To say that Steve Ross couldn’t quite believe his eyes as he scythed past at what is the fastest point of the storied Invercargill track is perfectly understandable too. So sure was the flagman that it was Collins’ white Leda LT27 that was going to win the race he ignored Ross’s dark blue McRae GM1 the first time it crossed the finish line, obliging Ross to do an extra lap before the mistake was identified and addressed.

So the record at the new-look George Begg Classic Speedfest meeting will note that though series young gun and runaway 2019/20 points leader Michael Collins qualified his Alistair Hey-owned Leda LT27 quickest and set the fastest race laps on his way to winning the first two SAS Autoparts MSC Series races of the weekend, the third was won by Steve Ross.

It wasn’t as if Ross didn’t deserve the win. Though as he said afterwards; ‘you have to commiserate with the guy (Collins) because he was absolutely on fire all weekend.”

Despite that with fellow young gun LeRoy Stevenson (who was down to drive Alistair Hey’s other Leda LT27) side-lined by a flu bug after qualifying third quickest behind Collins and Ross on Saturday, Ross was the only other driver able to match the pace of the 23-year-old Collins in any of the races.

Collins had built up a healthy lead of just over 10 seconds in the longer feature final feature this afternoon, too, albeit only after Ross spun off the track early on in the race, losing time but impressively, not his hard-won second place.

Behind Collins and Ross the big story of the meeting was the assured performance of Aucklander Glenn Richards driving the ex Eppie Weitz Lola T400. Though it was his first visit to the track, Richards qualified fourth quickest with a lap time of 56.802 then ran a smooth, quick and confident third in the first two races and a career-best second in the final.

Glenn Richards drove a great race to finish second. Photo Credit: Fast Company/Richard Dimmock

He had plenty of competition too, in the form of fellow Aucklander Grant Martin (Talon MR1A), former NZ Formula Ford champion Kevin Ingram (Lola T332), visiting Australian driver Paul Zazryn and fellow Lola T332 driver Codie Banks, Yet no matter who was (often very) close behind him Richards never lost his cool.

It was just as close meanwhile in the Class A category for earlier F5000 cars, with Tony Roberts back in top in his high-wing McLaren M10A but never quite able to completely shake off season-long rival Frank Karl (McLaren M10B).

With its special guest appearance at the new George Begg-themed Classic Speedfest meeting at Invercargill’s Teretonga Park now done and dusted, the SAS Autoparts MSC NZ F5050 Tasman Cup Revival Series returns to the North Island for the final 2019/20 round at the big HRC Legends of Speed meeting at Hampton Downs over the March 21/22 weekend.

The regular ‘travelling’ members of the NZ F5000 Association then have a couple of months to prepare their cars for their next ‘trip away;' in this case to Ireland and Great Britain for major Historic motor racing meetings at Mondello Park on Aug 15 and 16 and at Oulton Park from Saturday August 29 to Monday August 31.

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland