Luke Youlden may have smashed the lap record at Manfeild Autocourse in Feilding today but even that sort of pace could not overcome the handicap he was given for the first race of the weekend in Round 2 of the Schaeffer Oil N.Z. Super Sedan Series.
Youlden, of Melbourne Australia, hustled the Powerbuilt Tools/Bed Rumours Handcrafted Beds Ford Mustang around the 3.03 kilometre Manawatu track 8 seconds quicker than the next fastest car in qualifying this morning. However the first race of the weekend was a handicap event and Youlden found himself 148 seconds behind the first car to start the race and 48 seconds behind the car immediately ahead of him.
He spent the race threading his way through the traffic and wasn't helped when a power steering line broke. He did however manage to work his way through to 5th place at the finish. On the way he lowered the lap record to 65.99 seconds. The time comfortably beat the previous best held by Craig Baird at 66.55.
The race itself was an exciting affair with the spectators on their feet as Roger Williams of Auckland came through to win in his Mercedes 450SL Chev V8.
After the race Youlden said the handicap had been just too much to make up but he was confidently looking forward to tomorrow. "We used old tyres today and with new ones tomorrow I'm aiming to obliterate the lap record", he said. "I'm hoping the weather is fine".
Tomorrow Youlden and the Powerbuilt Tools/Bed Rumours Handcrafted Beds Ford Mustang will compete in a rolling start race in the morning followed by a handicap grid start race later in the day.