Round 4 – Sandown 2005
Mustang Mauls The Masses.
Words Graham Slater. Pictures – BonnyArt www.racephotos.com.au
After what could only be described as a red hot qualifying session it was clear to all comers that in spite of a break of several months Michael “The Muncher” Miceli and his fiery Red Boss 302 Mustang were back with a vengeance. A strong wind on the long Sandown back straight and what to many seemed a slower than usual track surface assisted to separate the four top runners by just a few tenths. Miceli was on pole with a time of 1.26.84. Alongside the Melbourne Panels car was the Tru- Line Kitchens Kingswood 308 of Phil Dunkin (1.26.88), close behind on row two was the dominant duo from the last round Wayne Purdon’s Falcon 351GT (1.26.89) and Scott Slater the first of a trio of Torana XUI’s in fourth spot (1.26.92).
Right behind this dynamic quartet a whole bunch of fired up pretenders led by the Mustangs of Bill Trengrove (Barwon Timber), Michael Bugelly in his 67 coupe, the E49 Charger of Glenn Miles and the closely matched Torana XU1’s Mark Brewster and Mark Barbour, the latter debuting the immaculate ex- Les Dole car. Next also back after a long break was Dom Leo driving his father Tino’s Nb Mustang. Mini (Cooper S) legend Ted Brewster led the four cylinder field from the Lotus Cortina’s of John Bendall and Paul Trevethan. Justin Brown’s fast red BMW 2002 had the rest of the under 2 litre field covered heading the similar car of Mark Shatz, the Cortina GT’s of Colin Doolan and Rod Evans and the 1300GT Escort of Dean Bryant. Class contender Daniel Myers had electrical woes in the Datsun 1600 and would start from the back of the grid, after a minor electrical fault nobbled the Datsun 1600 driver’s qualifier.
Determined not to be left in the shadow of the Miceli Mustang Dunkin won the start and headed the red car around the first hectic lap. Sensing a challenge Miceli rose to the occasion wresting back the lead on the second lap. Purdon, Bugelly and Trengrove were now well in the equation while a faulty clutch saw Slater’s Torana spin out of contention at turn 1 on lap 3. The dice between the Torana’s of Mark Brewster intensified as Slater ratcheted up a notch to regain the places lost earlier eventually repassing Barbour and Brewster to finish sixth behind the rapid Miles Charger. Wayne Purdon had retired in spectacular fashion when the big Ford suffered a major axle failure at one of the fastest parts of the back straight. This left Miceli a clear winner from Phil Dunkin, Michael Bugelly and Bill Trengove. Paul Trevethan led home the under 2 litre class from Justin Brown, Daniel Myers, Ted Brewster, John Bendall, Colin Doolan, Mark Shatz and Dean Bryant.
Results: 1st Michael. Miceli. (Mustang Boss 302). 1.24.52. 2nd Phil. Dunkin.(Kingswood 308). 1.25.81. 3rd Michael.Bugelly. (Mustang). 1.25.61. Fastest Lap: M.Miceli. 1.24.52.
Making sure he got the start one hundred percent right Miceli assumed an early lead from Dunkin, Trengrove, Bugelly, Mark Brewster and Glenn Miles, in the Sunday morning preliminary. Purdon had started from the rear of the grid and quickly threaded through the field to be in sixth place by lap 3. Slater passed Miles as the Chargers gearbox expired with the (Mark Barbour Dental Clinics) XU1 of Barbour in hot pursuit. Mark Brewster now led the 6 cylinder challenge but was soon under pressure as the fast closing XU1 of Scott Slater. Miceli looked well in control and went on to a clear win by 5 seconds from Bugelly, Dunkin, Purdon, Trengrove and Scott Slater, who had pulled off a great braking duel with Mark Brewster through the esses just before Dandenong Rd corner on the last lap to take out the 6 cylinder class. Justin Brown capped off a solid drive in the 2002 BMW, the minor suspension tweaks assisting Ballarat’s fastest Chiropractor to capture the 4 cylinder category from Ted Brewster, Myers, Doolan, Bendall, Shatz , Stone, Bryant and Trevethan. Among the casualties was a luckless Rod Evans the rapid Cortina GT following on from an alternator problem in the previous event by damaging a couple of big end bearings, ensuring a no start for the afternoon finale.
Results: 1st. M. Miceli. (Mustang Boss 302). 1.25.00. 2nd M. Bugelly. (Mustang). 1.25.54. 3rd. P. Dunkin. (Kingswood 308). 1.26.12. Fastest Lap: M. Miceli. 1.25.00.
Both Trengrove and Slater had anxious moments before the final sorting out nagging clutch problems, and with 11 laps scheduled for the championship race all the contenders would need to be one hundred percent prepared for some tough laps. The stage was set for some eagerly anticipated spirited dicing right through the field. Purdon was first into turn one with Miceli, Bugelly Dunkin and Slater in hot pursuit. It was serious but fair racing, door handle to door handle, with no one giving any quarter. Bill Trengrove,s Mustang split the Toranas of Brewster and Barbour until the latter suffered a broken axle on the third lap leaving just three GMH products to harass the dominant Ford quartet. Dinkin’s Kingswood succumbed on lap seven with a broken fan belt, leaving Slater in a comfortable but lonely fourth place. Trevethan was just keeping Brown’s BMW at bay while Daniel Myers looked good for a top ten finish until a minor electrical fault sidelined the 1600 yet again on the last lap.
Miceli gradually drew away for yet another 5 second clear victory, with Purdon in a hotly contested second only just ahead of a revitalized Mike Bugelly. Scott Slater finished in fourth place in front of Bill Trengrove, Mark Brewster, Paul Trevethan, Justin Brown, Ted Brewster with Colin Doolan’s Cortina GT rounding out the top Ten. Roll on Round 5. Phillip Island Sept 3-4.
Overall Race Results:
Race 1. Miceli, Dunkin, Bugelly, Trengrove, Miles & Slater.
Race 2. Miceli, Bugelly, Dunkin, Purdon, Trengove & Slater.
Race 3. Miceli, Purdon, Bugelly, Slater, Trengrove & Brewster.
Fastest Lap: Michael Miceli (Ford Boss 302) Race 1 1.24.5294.