More on the Dunlop Targa 2010

18 11 2010

WELL…..   What a Blast…   What a week…   What a Car…   What wonderful people…   What Fantastic Scenery…   What Great Roads we have in NZ…   I could go on and on…  (I know.. some say that’s what I do best ! ) 

This Dunlop Targa is an event that should be put into every petrol-head’s diary ! !

From the time I collected the Near New Porsche Cayman ‘S’ from Greg Clarke, at E.M.L. (European Motors Ltd) until I delivered it UNSCATHED to Armstrong Prestige in Wellington, I knew that I had a very special sports car under my right foot…   This Porsche has the most amazing handling I have ever experienced in a road car. With Porsche PSM (Porsche Stability Management) ABS and the mid-engine chassis, this car can get you out of ‘tight spots’ that would see most other cars off the road and into a paddock !  As I got more used to it I was able to explore the limits a bit more, here and there, and all the while sharing these experiences with 16 different Dignitaries along the way.  Every one of them, Men and Women, Mayors, Deputy Mayors, District Councilors, CEOs, City Councilors, all seemed astounded at the car’s capabilities, and performance.

We sure did have loads of fun. One of the high-lights was leading, then chasing Shane van Gisbergen in his new Ford Falcon XR6 around the track at Manfeild.

The Porsche Cayman S ran flawlessly all week. All it needed was petrol each day. I didn’t have to lift the bonnet (luckily, because the engine is hiding somewhere in the middle !) and the only wear and tear was to the brakes and tyres (which did a truly fabulous job of stopping the car and keeping it on the road).

Thanks again, must go to Peter Martin and his whole crew, for putting together this magnificent event, and to Richard Giltrap and Greg Clarke at E.M.L. for supplying the car, and to Porsche for building such an Awesome fun-to-drive road car.

Bring on the next one….    🙂   🙂

Kids in Cars K.I.C.

18 11 2010

Sorry this has taken so long to update…

We had a fantastic day on “Bathurst in the Park” day at Pukekohe 10th October 2010.

I am so happy and proud to be invited each year to be a part of this wondeful and very worthwhile event.

We are all about raising money and awareness for Kids, and families of  ‘Kids with Cancer’.

I was fortunate to be allowed to drive the fabulous bright red Commodore GTS of Pete & Donna Kerr… ALL DAY  😮     What a fun way to make kids (and older kids) all Happy

A BIG Thank you to Brian Service as well, for bringing along the HUGE TV screen for us to watch the Bathurst Race at the same time.

I think everybody involved in this very ‘sharing and giving’ day deserve a big pat on the back.

Well Done…………..     🙂  😮  🙂  😮

2010 Dunlop Targa NZ

26 10 2010
Ray is thrilled and honoured to have been asked to take an official role in the 2010 Targa.  He will drive the 003 Promotional Vehicle.
Targa introduced the 003, 002 & 001 promotional cars last year and not only did they prove to be very successful, they also help to keep the special stages secure prior to the competition vehicles.   This year, 003 is a Porsche Cayman S that has been supplied by Porsche New Zealand . Thanks must go to Richard Giltrap and his team for providing this car. 

 Ray’s role is to pick up the various dignitaries from the local regions and give them a taste of what the Dunlop Targa event is all about.





Manfeild 1st Round of Bridgestone Porsche Series

5 10 2010

I was invited to join the support team by the Dempsey Wood drivers, Jeff Lowrey and Conal Dempsey.

What an enjoyable weekend we had. As Team Mentor I helped with setting up both the Porsche 911’s suspension, then settled in to the passenger seat of each car on Friday’s testing, to assist with racing lines around the tricky and demanding Manfeild circuit. The results were better than we had expected with Jeff finishing with a 2nd and two 3rd places in class.  Conal managed an impressive 2nd and two 1st places in the Bridgestone Races, but even more ‘Icing on the Cake’ was his 1st across the line in the GT2 race. This was especially rewarding for the team, because the GT3s had previously been unbeatable at the Manfeild circuit.

Conal has really come to grips with his 911 fitted with twin turbo engine, lapping Manfeild at 1.12.6 in the GT2/GTNZ races, on slick tyres. The engine is now putting out 530hp for the GT2 class, but for the Bridgestone Porsche Races, Peter Booth has to add penalty weight, fit exhaust restrictors, and change the engine management map to lower the power to just 409hp. Even though Ian Hayr’s GT3 put in quicker lap times in the 1.15s, to Conal’s 1.16s, the racing was very, very close, as the Turbo’s torque worked well on the tight track. Several spectators were heard to comment that the racing between these two cars was the best racing of the weekend, with them often circulating side by side through many corners and never more than a few meters apart, but not touching. Great spectacle and very good for the Race Series.

Roll on the next Bridgestone Porsche Series round at Taupo 23/24 October 2010.

Taupo, Final Race of the Winter Series

16 06 2010

Friday 11th June 2010, testing our  Dempsey Wood  Porsche 911 at a cold and wet Taupo Race Track was certainly challenging for the team. We were able to bed in the new brakes and try some different tyres for the changing wet or drying track conditions.

Saturday dawned with a drier track so we had qualifying with a reasonably dry line, and managed to set a 1.41.647 for third place on the grid, behind the McLennan/Innes Porsche GT3, and the Rick & Dion Cooper Ford GT40, but just ahead of the Whyman Porsche GT3 on 1.41.962, and the Eady/Bell BMW M3 1.43.312, then a further 4 seconds back to the Billington/Parker Mitsubishi Evo and the rest of the field.

Just before the race formation laps at 11.40am, the heavens opened up again, and rain or drizzle was expected for the rest of the day, so we decided to do the race on Pirellis (we noticed the BMW M3 had made the same choice). The race did get away at 5 minutes past Noon with a lot of spray, slipping and sliding. The first to spin was the Whyman Porsche GT3 on the first lap, and Jeff was finding his 20 year old Porsche a real handful in the tricky conditions, but he held on until just after half way to hand over to Conal Dempsey in 5th place. By this time both GT3s had crashed out, along with one of the BMWs, causing several safety car interventions and saving fuel for everyone…  The BMW M3 had gained a lap on the field by now, so Conal set about catching the very fast Turbo Corolla. Once past the Corolla Conal was eyeing up the Mitsubishi Evo 8 to move us back to 3rd, but a Mini destroyed itself into the armco at the end of the back straight (at the same place the Whyman GT3 destroyed itself earlier).

This crash brought out the safety car again and the decision was made to red flag the race, so we were left finishing 4th across the line, 2nd in class but a creditable 2 laps ahead of the Ford GT40.

This result was particularly satisfying for the team, as the Ford GT40 had beaten us at each of the previous 2 rounds…. by only 15 seconds at Manfeild, but by more at Pukekohe as we had gear selector troubles. We had beaten the BMW M3 at Manfeild by 3 laps and were 2 to 3 seconds a lap quicker at Pukekohe too, before our problems lost us several laps.

This fine result shows that even an old Porsche, well prepared by Peter Booth and his team at MotorScience can still be competitive against some of the latest racing machines in the country.

The older Porsche 911 is hard enough to drive to the limit on a dry track, but both Jeff and Conal showed great skill in those conditions, to keep it off the walls and bring it home undamaged after 4 hours on a very challenging wet track. 

In closing, I want to again thank Jeff Lowrey and Conal Dempsey of  Dempsey Wood for inviting me to be a part of their racing team. We had a really great time and finishing with a Podium result was “Icing on the Cake.”

Pukekohe 6 hour Enduro Race

17 05 2010

Not the result we were hoping for… We qualified 3rd on the grid, in our 20 year old Dempsey Wood Porsche 911 with an official 1.03.89 behind a Porsche GT3 and Dean Perkins’ V8 SuperCar (they were both into the 1.02s), but ahead of Rick Cooper’s Ford GT40 and the second GT3 plus a lot of newer, better spec’d cars. Just before the start the heavens opened up and ‘persisted down’…  so we fitted the Pirelli ‘wets’ and disconnected the sway bars. The race started for several laps behind the safety car, and when we went ‘green’ I managed to pass the Perkins V8 and hold station behind the faster GT3. After an hour we were looking good in second place, 5 seconds ahead of the Perkins Ford V8 and approx 40 seconds ahead of the Ford GT40…. but… then we had a safety car period so the field closed right up again, both the GT3s pitted for dry tyres, as it was starting to clear. Sadly I stayed out with the ‘wet’ set up, expecting more rain…. it cleared up nice and sunny so I had to pit for the ‘dry’ Michelins, and reconnect the sway bars. Sadly this took 5 laps so we were out of the front running…. we were also experiencing fuel pick up problems, causing a misfire and losing a second or two each lap.

The Owner-Drivers, Jeff Lowrey and Conal Dempsey, put in some very good laps to hold a good track position, until the gear linkage failed. A lengthy pitstop fixed the problem and we soldiered on to the end to finish 11th across the line. I think we are still possibly in the running for a good overall position in the endurance race series, so we will lick our wounds and come back fighting to Taupo in a few weeks time.

See you all then……  Cheers for now   🙂  :o)

Pukekohe 6 hour Endurance Race Practice

14 05 2010

Well, here we are at Friday’s practice for the 6 hour race tomorrow.

The little Dempsey Wood  Porsche went really well and gave us some 1.03 second laps, which is a very good time on street tyres.

We have each (Conal Dempsey, Jeff Lowrey and myself) finished our compulsory 4 laps in the dark tonight and now look forward to the official qualifying tomorrow late morning, for the race start at 2pm tomorrow, Saturday 15th.

Pukekohe 6 hour endurance race

4 05 2010

After our good result at Manfeild, we are all looking forward to the 6 hour endurance race at Pukekohe on Saturday the 15th May, where Conal Dempsey will join Jeff Lowrey and myself in the Dempsey Wood Porsche 911 to try to beat the Cooper’s Ford GT 40. We expect tough competition from a field with more entrants than the first round.

The 20 year old Porsche was so fresh after the 4 hours of Manfeild that it only required fresh tyres and brake pads and it is all ready to go again.  Thanks again to Peter Booth and his MotorScience team for such reliabilty.

Endurance Race – Excellent Result: 2nd place

1 05 2010

What a great race – varying weather conditions ranging from warm sun to heavy rain (the race was called 8 mins early due to heavy rain storm) but our car went brilliantly and we came home in second place, only 16 seconds behind Rick Cooper’s Ford GT, a serious race car with more than 700hp.

We are very proud of our 20 year old Porsche. Thanks to Peter Booth and his team at MotorScience for building such a good and reliable car.

Thanks to my co-driver, Jeff Lowrey – half of the Dempsey Wood  team who own the car.  I’m thrilled to have been able to join your team.

Looking forward to some celebrating tonight !

North Island Endurance Race – Round 1

28 04 2010

I’m excited to be co-driving in this race with Jeff Lowrey in the Dempsey Wood 911 twin turbo.  It takes place at Manfeild this coming weekend, 30 April 2010.