Group S’s Gulf Oil Classic Sports Car Racing Series is set to feature at the 2018 Tasman Festival. The category will support the event with a bumper field that will take over Sydney Motorsport Park with an endurance epic on race day Sunday.
The rapidly growing category has stepped up with a track density field that is sure to bring its traditional style of exciting motorsport and incredible diversity in machinery to the summer event. Let’s take a look at just a few of the cars you’ll see on track at the Tasman Festival.
Fifteen Porsches are entered in the event, leading the charge in terms of marque representation. The iconic 911 makes up the majority of the marque’s entry, but you’ll find variety even in that selection. Extremely quick mid-‘70s Carrera 3.0s and 2.7s will go head to head, while cars like Ryan Curnick’s 911E and Robert Berson’s 911T will show off the iconic model’s ‘60s style.
Muscling in on the 911 domination is Ron Goodman, who will drive his fierce 356 Pre A – a car that tends to draw a crowd with its distinctive ‘Outlaw’ looks and incredible engine note. Tom Walstab will also be joining in the fun, demonstrating the pace of Porsche’s front-engined efforts in a Porsche 928.
British marque MG will also be well represented at the Tasman Festival, with eleven entries split evenly between MGBs and Midgets. These little cars are much fiercer than their small frames may suggest, and are well worth watching.
Group S specifications don’t require cars to have period history or a Certificate of Description, so any historic production sports car that fits the time period can be built to specification and compete. This is one of the reasons the category is one of the fastest growing in the sport, and also why it attracts such diversity of machinery.
One of the more unusual cars that you’ll see at Sydney Motorsport Park is the 1972 Detomaso Pantera Euro GTS of Carey McMahon. Carey’s a frequent Heritage Touring Cars and Touring Car Masters competitor who raced Group C in period.
The Pantera was originally delivered into Germany in 1972, spending some time in the ‘States before making its way to Carey in 2012. Carey began a rebuild in 2015, and has since built the car up into an absolutely magnificent example of Italian muscle. The final touches are being put to the car as you read this and it will make its competitive debut at the Tasman Festival.
Simon Crane’s 1979 Renault Alpine A310V is another car recently rebuilt for the category, and a stunning machine highly evocative of Renault’s impressive motorsport history. The Alpine A310 is known for its rally performances, and it’s from the rally world that Crane’s car came.
These cars make up just a small sample of the near-50 Group S competitors set to roll out onto Sydney Motorsport Park for the Tasman Festival. The group will take part in a full weekend of racing, culminating in the always-exciting enduro race on Sunday.
The enduro format is a lot of fun, especially during the frenetic mid-race driver change. It’s also a good opportunity to get new drivers involved in the sport, with drivers often inviting family, friends and mechanics to command the second seat. Make sure you check it out on Sunday the 2nd!
The Tasman Festival is set to cap off 2018’s historic motor racing season this December 1 & 2. Group S, Q & R Sports Racing, PRB’s 40th Anniversary, the Dawson-Damer Trophy and a stunning field of historic sports and racing cars from all categories will be featured over the course of the weekend.
Spectator tickets will be available on the Sydney Motorsport Park website in the lead-up to the event, as well as at the gate on the weekend. Kids 12 and under get in free. Adult tickets are $25 for Saturday, $35 for Sunday and $50 for a weekend pass. Concession tickets are $20 on Saturday, $25 on Sunday and $40 for a weekend pass.
The Tasman Festival will be held at Sydney Motorsport Park, Ferrers Rd, Eastern Creek NSW 2766, over the 1st & 2nd of December, 2018, with private practice on Friday the 30th of November.
Head to www.groupsracing.org.au to learn more about Group S Racing.