Island Magic

Stubber Magics Outright Record

November 28-29

Report by Chris Ralph. Pics courtesy Phil Wisewould. (more pics available from www.philwisewould.zenfolio.com)

Big hitters, tiny field, good battles and a new outright lap record – that was the story of Island Magic for 2015.

Normally the best-attended meeting outside of the Historic rounds, the Magic weekend has a relaxed end-of year feel and mostly good weather.

This year it had all of that – except the car numbers. A rival meeting in Sydney did not help, as NSW punters often make the trip. The 15-car list reduced early – Alan McAlvie’s Torana had a Friday fail; your Editor’s untried taller diff unwelded itself on the first flying lap of qualifying, leaving only 13…

Paul Stubber and Camaro made the trip from WA, combining it with Sandown Historic as he did last year. Unable to drive at Sandown his brother Ray did duty, but he was in cockpit at the Island and set pole with a blistering 1.46.1, far and away the fastest lap ever by a Group N car. In the cool air of Sunday morning he lowered this to 1.45.9789 to put it firmly into the record books. (And for those who doubt the capacity, it has been declared legal. Better puff Paul…)

SA’s Roger Oliver, similarly Camaro-mounted, slotted into second at 1.49.9, WA’s Shane Atwell’s Mustang was third almost five seconds back, first of a tight group that contained Stephen Pillekers’ Torana, Bill Trengrove’s Mustang, Alex Bland driving father Quentin’s Capri, and David Brown’s Datsun 1600 SSS. Not far behind was the ultra rapid Mini of SA’s Justin Elvin, ahead of Andrew Cannon’s Mustang and three second behind him, Adrian Read’s Mini and Brent Trengrove in the Mustang. The Cortina twins of Simon Browning closed off the grid. Something nasty in the Capri’s engine precluded any further involvement.

But the races would turn up interesting battles and performance improvements. Captain “Ace” Cannon with new motor and more seat time went three seconds faster over the weekend – from 1.57 in qualifying to 1.54.3 by R3. Adrian Read posted 2.06s at October’s State round, but regularly circulated at 2.00 this time. David Brown in the 9,500 rpm Datsun thought he’d have no-one to race with but found himself hounded – and often following – the spectacular similarly high-revving short-stroke Mini of Justin Elvin. And Fast Johnny Luxmoore, who always goes faster when he has someone to race, found four seconds from qualifying, courtesy of Simon Browning. These two were entertaining at the back of the field!

Race 1 saw Paul Stubber cruising at 1.47.1 and home ten seconds ahead of Roger Oliver who was two seconds faster than qualifying, Trengrove and Cannon were third and fourth only three seconds apart, another two seconds back Brown managed to get by Elvin and finish .9 sec ahead, with both circulating in the 1.54s. Just as quick but further back was Steve Pillekers, ahead of Read, Browning and Luxmoore. The Mustangs of Attwell and Bill Trengrove retired as did the luckless Charger of Glen Miles who had started at the back of the grid.

Race 2 saw the mighty record set by Stubber, who then amused himself and others with some exuberant drifting and overcooking it because he was having so much fun. A gentleman, he waited to rejoin the track until Roger Oliver swept by and finished 17 seconds adrift. Brent Trengrove was third ahead of Andrew Cannon who was relegated to sixth after a five second penalty for jumping the start. That put Justin Elvin fourth ahead of Bill Trengrove, Cannon, Atwell, Pillekers and Brown, who couldn’t get through the pack after a bad start. The smile on Johnny Luxmoore’s face was huge after he turned the tables on Simon Browning, beating him to the flag by a mere tenth of a second.

Race 3, and the normal order of service was resumed, with Stubber home ahead of Oliver, then a really tight tussle for third with Brent Trengrove, .6 sec ahead of Cannon, then the new Club Champion Stephen Pillekers, flying with a PB (or close to) of 1.53.5 and Brown, a better start putting him in front of Elvin’s rocket Mini by four seconds. Adrian Read was the last unlapped car, Browning returned serve on Luxmoore who scored the faster laptime of the two; the Mustangs of Atwell and Bill Trengrove again retired.

Small fields they may have been, but the racing, she was mighty…