In the lead up to Round 2 of the G1 Drift championship the weather in Adelaide had led everyone to expect a freezing forecast for Saturday’s motorsport action. With snow occuring in the Adelaide Hills Region and other areas I know it left me wondering just how many layers to take with me to keep warm over the course of the day.
I arrived at Mallala Motorsport Park to be welcomed by sunshine and a surprising lack of clouds. Despite my car telling me it was only 10 degrees outside it still felt surprisingly warm and made for a good turnout of spectators for the event.
With grandstands on the main straight and raised hill areas in between, it meant that spectators all around were able to see every qualifying run and battle unfold from start to finish.
The list of drivers featured all of the top competitors for the title. Jake Jones was back competing in his first G1 round for the year and in his first competitive event since his engine failure in the Sonvia at Clipsal 500 Adelaide. Anthony Cece had his purple S14 at the track with the newly built motor. Team ISC of Dean Newcomb and Daniel Prior were both on track. Jarrod Klingberg in his stand out KE70 Corolla Wagon was also a strong competitor.
Before we had even got through qualifying there were a number of mechanical issues plaguing the competitors. Anthony had a noise coming from the new motor during practice that he didn’t like so he opted to compete in a borrowed 190kw S14 from Christian Pickering.
During the first round of qualifying Daniel Prior had an issue with the balancer that put his S13 out of action for the rest of the day. His Team ISC teammate, Dean, kindly let Daniel complete qualifying in his Soarer.
The top spots after qualifying went to Dale Campaign, Jarrod Klingberg and Joel Donegan. The rest of the top 16 was filled out with a number of the usual place getters except the notable absence of Round 1 winner, Daniel Prior. Due to his mechanical failure during qualifying he had fallen into the bottom sixteen places.
The battles were fiercely fought with Dean Newcomb’s Soarer competing in both the bottom sixteen with Daniel at the helm and in top sixteen with Dean at home behind the wheel. Troy Lipschinski came out with the goods in the bottom sixteen, edging out Daniel Prior for the win.
In the top sixteen there were some amazing battles with a number of re-runs required to determine who would progress. Anthony Cece struggled with proximity in a car with a lot less power than he is used to steering and was knocked out in his first battle with Steven Griffin. Jake Jones put on a strong performance but was beaten out by Dale Campaign. Dale went on to place 4th overall for the day in his Onevia after a fierce battle for 3rd spot against Jarrod Klingberg. The fight for top honours was to be between Joel Donegan and Dean Newcomb. The battle was intense from the outset but unfortunately after coming through the corner onto the main straight Joel suffered a gearbox failure which left him with only 2nd and 4th gear. Joel continued to fight as hard as he could but Dean came home with the win through his consistently strong driving all day.