Springwood resident Stewart Temesvary and Blaxland’s Glenn Thomas were part of the Mazda MX-5 Club of NSW’s five man driving team, “Panorama Mountain Men”, who won the Alfa Club 12 Hour Relay at Winton, Victoria on October 13-14.
This is the second time the team has won at the Winton event. They also won the Victorian 6 Hour Relay held on the Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit in July this year. This means they are the only team to ever successfully defend their title at the Winton event and take victory in the Phillip Island relay in the same calendar year.
The Panorama Mountain Men team is arguably the strongest Regularity Relay team in Australia at the moment.
“The Mazda MX-5 has superb handling, which makes it a very popular car for Regularity events,” said Thomas. “Combine that with experience on the track and good strategy and you have potential to win.”
Regularity Relays are an increasingly popular form of grassroots motorsport. It is more about driving consistently than outright speed. Drivers nominate a lap time and are penalised for going too fast and receive bonus points for coming close to that time. When you consider that a lap time is around two minutes driving at speeds between 70 to 220 kph, against a field of up to 50 teams on the track, you begin to appreciate the challenge.
Temesvary, Thomas and the team were able to consistently lap Winton Raceway within one second of their nominated times over the 12 hours of competition, to end up convincing winners.
“My heart sank on Saturday morning when my car’s engine was losing power intermittently,” said Temesvary. A phone call to his local mechanic couldn’t resolve the issue, so the team put their heads together and eventually found a solution with a replacement coil pack. “It was a relief to have the engine running properly as I thought my chances of competing had evaporated!”
The team expressed their gratitude to the MX-5 Club of NSW and their sponsors Blue Mountains Mazda, Blackheath Automotive and Emu Signs for their ongoing support and enthusiasm.
“We’re already planning how to hold on to the trophy next year to make it three in a row,” said Temesvary.