5 MAY 2016
SHERRIN RACING LOOKING TO PI AFTER ‘SO CLOSE’ QR 300
The recent Queensland Raceway 300 was a case of ‘oh so close, but oh so far’ for the Sherrin Racing outfit.
The team was enjoying a comfortable lead aboard the #18 Sherrin Racing BMW135i of brothers Iain and Grant Sherrin with just 10 laps to go, when a brake issue saw them into the turn three sand trap and out of the race. Earlier, the #19 Sherrin Racing entry of Michael Sherrin and David Ayres was forced to retire early due to visibility issues.
It was a bitterly disappointing end to a challenging day for the Sherrin Racing team, but as always the team has been sure to take away both lessons and drive from the event to use in their future racing – including the ‘next up’ round one of the Australian Production Car Series, to be held at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit across May 27-29.
“The QR 300 started off really well for us. In the #18, Grant did a good job qualifying to see us start on the front row, while in the #19 entry started from fifth after Mike set his best ever lap time around QR,” explained Iain Sherrin.
“Grant started the race in the #18 and everything was going really well – we were running in second position and having a great battle Nathan Jess in his Future Racer, and then a massive storm hit the track.
“We had rain tyres on both cars so we stayed out, but we had an issue with visibility with an installation issue seeing our new demisting windscreens failing. Mike elected to come in and park the car, as he was particularly effected by the issue and did not want to risk a serious accident with the Phillip Island round of the Australian Production Car Series only weeks away.
“Grant continued on what was an extremely wet track which was resisting drying, and when there was another ‘clamp-down’ he came into pit lane and I took over the driving duties.
“Thankfully it was starting to dry out when the race restarted, and within ten to fifteen laps we were back to a normal race pace. We were a lap and a half down on the leader at this stage as we had to do two five-minute pit stops under the regulations while they only needed to do one, but I set to work and soon managed to not only make up the lap but also take over the lead by a comfortable margin.
“At this point, we looked on-track for a win. After coming second in both the Wakefield 300 and the Bathurst 6 Hour so far this year I was so excited to be looking at locking down that top spot of the podium – there were only 15 laps to go, and I had a comfortable gap. Unfortunately, as so often happens in racing, it just wasn’t to be.
“Approaching turn 6 with 10 laps to go, the brake pedal went to the floor. I pulled up just in time, and pumped it up down the front and back straights, but it was no use, by the time I got to turn three, it was gone again and despite starting to break some 200 metres early, I found myself in the sand trap and it was game over.
“Upon review, it turns out that we had run out of brake pads and it was metal on metal. Even in that situation, we should have had some pedal, but unfortunately one of the pistons had come out too far and released the brake fluid oil, which meant that we had absolutely no pedal to work with.
“We run those pads everywhere and have never had an issue, so while it is an unfortunate situation, at least we know what happened and we can make sure that we keep an eye on it when we are back here at QR in August for the APCS’ Fight in the Night.
“It was extremely disappointing to be leading the race and be so close and have something let go like that of course, but we are pushing harder and faster than ever before and we will just take what happened and make sure we do what we can to not have it happen again, and use that disappointment as drive to make up for it when he head to round one of the APCS later this month.”
The Phillip Island event will be the first round of the 2016 Australian Production Car Series, and Sherrin Racing goes there as the ones to beat after taking out the CAMS production car titles in 2015.
“We are definitely very keen to get going in the APCS this year, and with an expected 25 cars on the grid at round one, it should be a big and exciting year for the entire field,” said Iain Sherrin, who is also the category manager for the APCS.
“The team will be doing all we can to defend our outright, class and team championship titles, and we are looking forward to a great battle ahead. While things haven’t gone to plan recently (at QR), that only makes us more determined than ever.”
Sherrin Racing is proudly supported by valued sponsors Tyres 4 U, Hi-Tec Oils, Sci-Fleet, Clark Equipment, Sherrin Rentals and Sherrin Equipment. For more on Sherrin Racing, including news, upcoming events and photo galleries, please go to sherrinracing.com.au, or visit the team on Facebook at facebook.com/SherrinRacing