Home venue to kick off 12th season of Radical Australia Cup

The 12th season of the popular one-make Radical Australia Cup will get underway this weekend with the opening round of the 2020 program set for the home of the Cup - Sydney Motorsport Park - where a strong field of SR3s will do battle to establish an early hierarchy heading into the much anticipated Easter round at Mount Panorama. Leading the field will be 2019 title rivals and GWR Australia team-mates Chris Perini and Peter Paddon. For much of the last six years Paddon has been the undisputed ‘king’ of Radicals, having taken his venerable 1500cc SR3RS to three Cup titles and a string of victories at Sydney, an unsurpassed record on the challenging 3.93-kilometre layout. This year though - like Perini - Paddon will campaign a newer SR3RSX in an effort to take back the title he lost narrowly to his team-mate last season, although that said, the former Cup rookie-of-the-year stepped up to a whole new level in 2019, taking the title from Paddon in New Zealand after an epic battle across the final two races of the year. The two of them are expected to continue that fight this season, whilst there will be a number of experienced drivers looking to join them in that podium battle, whilst a selection of new faces will join the battle across the six round season this year, promising to make the 2020 title fight well worth following. A seven-time winner in the SR3 category at Sydney Motorsport Park across the last six seasons, Peter Paddon stands as the likely favourite heading into his home round, but that would discount the fact that Chris Perini was the winner of the most recent round at the venue last May, a year that saw a string of setbacks for Paddon in Sydney, something he will be hoping to put right with an upgraded RSX this season. As newly crowned #1 Perini will be under no illusions as to how difficult his title defence will be, nor whether he will be facing a one of two pronged attack, with fellow 2019 race winner Mitch Neilson potentially only campaigning a part-program in 2020 as he pursues opportunities to campaign an LMP3 prototype overseas. Neilson has entered the opening round with prototype specialist JP Drake alongside, however he has not committed his full plans until his overseas program is set in concrete. That will pave the way for a number of experienced campaigners to throw their hat into the ring in the outright battle, two of them being specialists at Sydney Motorsport Park thanks to extensive laps across the last few seasons of the NSW State Series - Stephen Champion (who claimed the 2019 state title) and Paul Braico. The two showed during cameo appearances in ‘The Cup’ last year that they are quick, and that they are capable of running with the leaders at their home circuit, both of them putting in strong performances during the local round against the might of their former State Series rival Neilson and points leaders Paddon and Perini. Likewise Kosta Pohorukov showed last year that he is capable of battling alongside GWR Australia team-mates Paddon and Perini, the Tilton Interiors boss has the pace to push for a podium finish, but he could just be one of a number of drivers - including former race winner Simon Haggarty who will be back at SMP alongside his father Tony, the pair sharing driving duties in Simon’s SR3RS HRT entry - capable of an outright podium. Whilst the established Radical Australia Cup drivers including Peter Clare, Bill Medland, Rowan Ross and 2019 rookie-of-the-year Jim Hernandez will all be pushing for a spot on the podium this year, there are a string of new drivers - some with good Radical experience in the various State Series events - that will be pushing to make an impression. Victorian-based team-mates Jon Grant and Susan Esselmont will make their Radical Australia Cup debuts, whilst fellow State Series Radical regular Zig Fuhrmeister will make his second Cup start after a debut at Phillip Island last season, a result which netted him a fourth-placed finish in race two behind Neilson, Paddon and Perini. Carmelo Bonaventura is another with some strong Radical experience under his belt, but he too will be making his Radical Australia Cup debut, whilst Sydney’s Warwick Morris will be another to make his Cup debut, the State Series GT regular stepping across to Radical competition for the first-time, with pre-season testing suggesting he could well be one to watch in the ex-Tony Haggarty RSX. The 2020 Radical Australia Cup season also welcomes back 2012 champion Ed Singleton who will return in his MPA Projects SR3RS from round two at Bathurst, and we extend a warm welcome back to MPA Projects who will also act as an official partner of the Radical Australia Cup this year. As part of the opening round of the 2020 season, Radical Australia Cup will run alongside the Australian Production Car Series with LIVE coverage across the weekend, details of which will be provided on the Radical Australia Facebook page, including updates across the event; https://www.facebook.com/radicalaustralia ----------------------------------------------------- 2020 Radical Australia Cup Rnd#1, Sydney Motorsport Park, NSW 6-8 March, 2020 Entries: 4. Warwick Morris (Underdog Racing Radical SR3RSX) 6. Simon Haggarty/Tony Haggarty (HRT Radical SR3RSX) 14. Carmelo Bonaventura (Melos Rendering Radical SR3RS) 23. Jim Hernandez (82One/RA Motorsport Radical SR3RSX) 24. Susan Esselmont (RaceIntel Radical SR3RS) 26. Kostinken Pohorukov/Zig Fuhrmeister (GWR/Tilton Racing Radical SR3RSX) 27. Zig Fuhrmeister (Elect Motorsport Radical SR3RS) 31. Peter Paddon (First Focus Radical SR3RSX) 34. Stephen Champion (GWR/Champion’s Business Growth Adv. Radical SR3RS) 38. Mitch Neilson/JP Drake (RA Motorsports Radical SR3RSX) 47. Peter Clare (Shared Runway/Volante Rosso Radical SR3RS) 51. Jonathan Grant (RaceIntel Radical SR3RS) 52. Bill Medland (RA Motorsports Radical SR3RS) 80. Paul Braico (GWR Radical SR3RS) 81. Chris Perini (GWR/991Racing.net Radical SR3RSX) 88. Rowan Ross (RA Motorsports SR3RSX) Schedule: Friday, 6 March 09:00am - Practice#1 (20-minutes) 11:15am - Practice#2 (20-minutes) 02:05pm - Practice#3 (20-minutes) Saturday, 7 March 08:30am - Qualifying (30-minutes) 01:37pm - Race#1 (50-minutes) Sunday, 8 March 09:30am - Warm-up (10-minutes) 12:54pm - Race#2 (50-minutes) ----------------------------------------------------- Radical Australia Cup history at Sydney Motorsport Park: Rnd#3 - 2019 Qual#1; 1. Chris Perini 1:29.2288, 2. Mitch Neilson 1:29.8626, 3. Peter Clare 1:30.3864 Qual#2; 1. Chris Perini 1:29.3614, 2. Mitch Neilson 1:29.9056, 3. Stephen Champion 1:30.4410 Race#1 (30-laps): 1. Chris Perini, 2. Kosta Pohorukov, 3. Stephen Champion Race#2 (27-laps): 1. Phil Anseline/Oliver Smith, 2. Peter Paddon, 3. Mitch/Brad Neilson Rnd#2 - 2019 Qualifying#1; 1. Peter Paddon 1:29.4347, 2. Chris Perini 1:29.6107, 3. Mitch Neilson 1:30.0304 Qualifying#2; 1. Peter Paddon 1:29.4895, 2. Chris Perini 1:29.7376, 3. Mitch Neilson 1:30.2843 Race#1 (32-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. Chris Perini, 3. Simon Haggarty Race#2 (15-laps): 1. Mitch Neilson, 2. Peter Paddon, 3. Simon Haggarty Race#3 (32-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. Chris Perini, 3. Brad/Mitch Neilson 2018 Qualifying#1; 1. Chris Perini 1:29.6077, 2. Paddon 1:29.9332, 3. Oliver Smith 1:30.1019 Qualifying#2; 1. Chris Perini 1:29.6115, 2. Paddon 1:30.1107, 3. Neilson 1:30.4265 Race#1 (32-laps): 1. Chris Perini, 2. Peter Paddon, 3. Mitch/Brad Neilson Race#2 (29-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. John Beck, 3. Peter Clare 2017 Qualifying; 1. Shaw 1:28.7357, 2. Smith 1:28.9901, 3. Burke 1:29.0854 Race#1 (32-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. Michael Shaw, 3. Oliver Smith Race#2 (30-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. Chris Medland, 3. Sue Hughes 2016 Qualifying; 1. Winslow 1:28.4401, 2. Paddon 1:28.6871, 3. Ross 1:29.2979 Race#1 (31-laps): 1. Peter Paddon, 2. David Crampton 3. Simon Haggarty Race#2 (28-laps): 1. O. Smith/G. Smith, 2. Rowan Ross, 3. Simon Haggarty ----------------------------------------------------- Sydney Motorsport Park Location: Eastern Creek, Sydney, NSW Circuit length: 3.93-kilometres Corners: 11 (anti-clockwise) Circuit first opened: 1990 Radical SR3 lap record: 1:28.2263 (James Winslow, Race#1, 2 July, 2016) - RACE 1:28.4401 (James Winslow, 1 July, 2016) - QUALIFYING ----------------------------------------------------- 2019 Championship Points (after six rounds of six) 1. Chris Perini (413-points), 2. Peter Paddon (399), 3. Mitch Neilson (325), 4. Brad Neilson (242), 5. Peter Clare (211), 6. Chris Medland (170), 7. Kostinken Pohorukov (154), 8. Bill Medland (152), 9. Greg Kenny (150), 10. Max Medland (145), 11. Jim Hernandez (142), 12. Paul Braico (132), 13. Simon Haggarty (127), 14. Aaron Love (126), 15. Phil Anseline (108), 16. Brenton Griguol (99), 17. Rowan Ross (95), 18. Tony Haggarty (66), 19. Stephen Champion (62), 20. Neale Muston (60), 21. Michael Whiting (54), 22. Oliver Smith (52), 23. Anthony Davis (21), 24. David Pennells/Matthew Windsor (18), 25. JP Drake (18), 26. Brad Shiels/Grant Denyer (11), 27. Ed Singleton (0) ----------------------------------------------------- 2020 Radical Australia Cup Rnd#1 - 6-8 March - Sydney Motorsport Park, New South Wales (Aust. Prod. Car Series) Rnd#2 - 10-12 April - Mount Panorama, Bathurst, New South Wales (MA Nationals) Rnd#3 - 12-14 June - The Bend Motorsport Park, South Australia (MA Nationals) Rnd#4 - 11-12 July - Barbagallo Raceway, Western Australia Rnd#5 - 21-23 August - Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, Victoria (MA Nationals) Rnd#6 - 11-13 September - Sandown Raceway, Victoria (MA Nationals) ----------------------------------------------------- Keep in touch with the Radical Australia Cup via Facebook; www.facebook.com/radicalaustralia #RadicalAustralia

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