Marc Cini will make his return to Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge this weekend, when the National one-make Series travels to the Sandown International Raceway in the South-Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria for Round 3. The Porsche Centre Melbourne driver is the most experienced Porsche Paynter Dixon Carrera Cup Australia driver in the Championship’s history and has started more one-make Porsche races in the southern hemisphere than any other driver.
The Hallmarc backed driver returns to Series, having last raced in the Sprint Challenge Australia (formerly GT3 Cup Challenge) back in 2014. Also making his comeback in Round 3 is Daniel Stutterd who returns to the Series, having last raced in the 2018 season where he won the Morris Pro-Am Championship after a season-long battle with Brett Boulton. Stutterd won seven Pro-Am races that season and finished sixth outright in the Series along the way.
Ten drivers made their Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge debut in Sydney for the opening round of the 2022 Series. This was the most first-time racers in any one round of Sprint Challenge in the last decade of competition.
Included in that list of starters were six drivers in the Pro class, two in Morris Pro-Am and three in Class B including: Thomas Sargent, Lachlan Bloxsom, Ryan Wood, Jason Miller, Harrison Goodman, Aron Shields (All pro), Christian Fitzgerald, Emanuel Mezzasalma (Morris Pro-Am) and Jacob Li, Nathan Sticklen and Gerard Murphy in Class B.
Last time out at Queensland Raceway for Round 2, Eric Constantinidis, Tom McLennan, Bradley Carr and Lachlan Harburg joined the list, all campaigning previous-gen 991.1 cars in Class B, taking the list to 14.
Sandown will see two further debutants join the Sprint Challenge field: Matt Slavin and Travis Knipe.
Should all 27 entries start, this will be the largest Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge field ever assembled for a Sandown round of the Series, and the largest of the season to date. This is the third consecutive round where Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge has set a record for the largest grid to race at that particular circuit.
Thomas Sargent has now won the last four consecutive races, having finished second in the opening pair of sprints at Sydney Motorsport Park’s season opener. Closest rival Ryan Wood, trails Sargent by just 10 points in the standings, having finished second in the last four consecutive races.
While that pair of Michelin Juniors have locked out the top spots so far, behind them the battle for third has been highly competitive; three different drivers having occupied the last podium step in the six races held so far. After Courtney Prince was third in all three Sydney races, Aron Shields and Lachlan Bloxsom shared the honours at Queensland Raceway – their home circuit.
The Morris Pro-Am fight closely mirrors the Pro class battle, with Sam Shahin dominating four races and Brett Boulton claiming line honours in the remaining pair. After Tom Taplin elected to move up to the Pro class, Bradley Carr and young Tom McLennan start as favourites in Class B for Round 3. The pair will resume battle with both Jacob Li and Gerry Murphy.
Following two practice sessions and a qualifying on Friday, both Saturday’s two 14-lap Sprint races and Sunday’s 45-minute Enduro will be broadcast LIVE on Stan Sport.
For race information, videos and interviews, follow the Porsche Motorsport Australia social pages: Instagram – @PorscheMotorsportAU / Twitter – @PorscheMspAU / Facebook.com/ PorscheMotorsportAU
Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge, Round 3, Sandown
|3||Jonathan||Gliksten||Class B||Racing to beat FA|
|8||Madeline||Stewart||Pro||Bullrush Rally / EBM|
|11||Eric||Constantinidis||Pro-Am||Our Kloud / Up to 11 Motorsport|
|13||Sam||Shahin||Pro-Am||The Bend Motorsport Park|
|18||Travis||Knipe||Pro-Am||Favrte Racing / Pinnacle Road & Race Works|
|32||Courtney||Prince||Pro||Sonic Motor Racing / Local Legends|
|34||Nathan||Sticklen||Class B||TekworkX Motorsport|
|40||Ryan||Wood||Pro||Team Porsche New Zealand / EBM|
|59||Jason||Miller||Pro||Stokes Skis Australia|
|74||Christian||Fitzgerald||Pro-Am||EMA Motorsport / FRS|
|81||Tom||McLennan||Class B||Tom McLennan|
|88||Harrison||Goodman||Pro||Sonic Motor Racing / Bob Jane T Marts / True Grid|
|91||Lachlan||Harburg||Class B||Autohouse Racing|
|99||Ross||McGregor||Pro-Am||Southern Star Windows|
|131||Graham||Williams||Pro-Am||Sonic Motor Racing / WRA|
|266||Jacob||Li||Class B||ASM / Mars Performance|
BROADCAST SCHEDULE: Stan Sport
Saturday 17 September
11:10-11:30 Race 1 (14 laps)
14:35-14:55 Race 2 (14 laps)
Sunday 18 September
10:45-11:30 Race 3 (35 laps)
Last 5 Round winners at Sandown Raceway:
2019: Aaron Love (Sonic). Pole: Harri Jones. Race Winners: Aaron Love x 2, Max Vidau.
2018: Cooper Murray (McElrea). Pole: Cooper Murray. Race Winners: Simon Fallon x 2, Cooper Murray
2017: Sam Shahin (Buik Motorsport). Pole: Brenton Grove. Race Winners: Brenton Grove, Jordan Love x2.
2016: Jaxon Evans (McElrea). Pole: Jaxon Evans. Race Winners: Ryan Simpson x 3.
2015: Ryan Simpson (Sonic). Pole: Ryan Simpson. Race Winners: Ryan Simpson x2, Geoff Emery