MEDIA RELEASE || Tuesday 30 August 2011
FIRST-time entrant Warwick Hutchinson has taken out the 2011 Leyburn Sprints outright trophy on the Darling Downs last weekend.
Hutchinson set a fastest time around the 1.1 km street course of 47.6584 sec. on the sixth of seven runs in his self-developed Van Diemen RF92-Rotary.
He eclipsed the defending champion and multiple Leyburn winner Ray Vandersee and his Skelta G-Force sports car by almost two seconds.
Grant Watson, the 2010 runner-up, came home third on Sunday in a Prosport Eclipse sports car.
The 16th annual Sprints, commemorating the 1949 Australian Grand Prix held at a nearby airfield, accepted 210 entries from historic, classic and high-performance cars built between 1926 and 2010. Entrants travelled from many parts of Queensland and New South Wales.
Although track times were affected until rain stopped and the sun came out on Saturday, organisers were pleased with the overall outcome of the event.
“The Leyburn Sprints is one of the longest continuously-running historic motorsport events in the country and again it was very well supported this year by spectators, competitors and sponsors,” organising committee President Ann Collins said.
“People come for the relaxed country atmosphere, the camaraderie among competitors and of course the great racing. We’ve had wonderful feedback already from many people who attended saying how much they enjoyed themselves and are looking forward to 2012.”
On Sunday, a full complement of competitors, a big spectator crowd and 80 glittering cars in the Shannons Show n’ Shine competition turned out in warm, sunny weather for an action-packed day.
Times continued to tumble on a drying track, with the top drivers trading tit-for-tat fastest laps throughout the day.
The Show n’ Shine was one of three new attractions for 2011. Spectators also enjoyed a spirited unofficial competition in the V8 Supercar Drivers Challenge between veteran Dick Johnson and young guns James Moffatt of Johnson’s Jim Beam Racing team and Alex Davison from Irwin Racing, who all shared three classic racing cars.
Liberal National State Member of Parliament Lawrence Springborg unveiled a plaque marking a new public art project on the start-line straight in Macintyre Street.
Local artist Elizabeth Young has painted 15 concrete safety barriers with scenes of historic buildings and places in the former gold-mining village north-west of Warwick, providing a year-round tourist attraction.
Proceeds from the not-for-profit event will benefit community organisations and projects.
1 Warwick Hutchinson (Van Diemen RF92-Rotary) 47.6584 sec.
2 Ray Vendersee (Skelta G-Force) 49.4597
3 Grant Watson (Prosport Eclipse) 50.1378
4 Garry Ford (Ford Escort RS5000) 50.1900
5 Paul Mienert (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) 51.0086
The Leyburn Sprints is benefiting from funding under the Events Queensland Regional Development Program (EQRDP).
The EQRDP is an investment program designed to extend the flow of economic and social benefits of events to regional Queensland.
A State-wide initiative, the program is committed to enhancing existing events in regional Queensland, as well as assisting in the establishment of new events.
Since the EQRDP began in 2001, more than $17.5 million has been invested in 815 regional events, an indicator of the important role these events play in their communities and wider Queensland.
For further media information and assistance:
Mob. (0428) 959 101
Ph: 0418 759 417