Mark Pedersen scores a first corner to chequered flag win in reverse grid V8 race.
February 18, 2007. Mark Pedersen turned a hitherto difficult weekend on its ear when he drove his United Video Ford Falcon to victory in the reverse grid NZ V8 Championship race at Manfeild on Sunday afternoon.
He’d had en engine fail on Friday, beached the car during practice, and split a gearbox during Saturday’s race.
Sunday’s victory was the South Aucklander’s first NZ V8 win since Teretonga Park, Invercargill, in January 2006.
It was a finely-judged drive, with Pedersen getting the better of the drag race with fellow front row starter Tim Edgell (Ford) to the first corner.
From then on Pedersen gradually opened a buffer on the field, running consistently-fast laps to drive to an 8.470-second victory over Clark Proctor (Falcon).
Third, another four seconds back, was Australian Cameron McLean in another Ford.
Kayne Scott’s fourth place in the Mark Petch Motorsport Holden Commodore was enough to give the reigning champion the round win and the series lead.
Scott had driven through from the back of the field in a copybook display of how to thread your way effectively through traffic – hair-raising as the journey was for most of the way. Scott had finished second and third in the previous two races.
Angus Fogg, who had won the other two NZ V8 races in dominant style – the Sunday morning heat by 2.7 seconds from fellow Falcon driver David Besnard – was out of luck in the reverse grid 20-lapper.
Early in the race he had come off Turn 1 and collided hard with Pete Roberts’ Falcon which had already been spun by another car. Roberts’ Ford hit the trackside wall, and Fogg’s Falcon suffered toe-in damage which made it difficult to steer and frontal damage which caused it to overheat and lose power.
He brought it home 16th with a cooked motor, but that and the two wins gave him second for the weekend.
John McIntyre, who admitted his Falcon was off the pace at Manfeild, was third overall after consistent races which saw him net third place in Race 1, fourth in Race 2 and 12th in the reverse grid event.
He said the problem with the Falcon couldn't be fixed at the racetrack and would have to be done back at the team's workshop.
Besnard didn’t finish the reverse grid race, dropping out on lap 18 after struggling for some time with a broken axle.
He said he’d been aiming for second, knowing he couldn’t catch Pedersen, but would have settled for third.
He’d finished second behind Fogg in Race 2.
The next NZ V8 round is at Timaru the first weekend in March.
More on the V8s from Manfeild in this week’s Auto Trader magazine, on sale Thursday, February 22.
– story by Mike Stock at Manfeild.
Photo caption: David Besnard (left) and Angus Fogg dispute ground at the start of the second NZ V8 race. Photo courtesy of Hydraulink Racing.