Top 10 finish, title victory for Thewlis
LOCAL racing car driver Matt Thewlis completed the perfect Australian Production Car Series season at Phillip Island on Sunday to take out the 2018 Class D Championship.
Thewlis and co-driver Richard Luff were surprised to see none of their Class D opponents tackle the six-hour enduro so with the championship assured they set about setting some higher goals.
Coming up against cars with more power than them, Thewlis and Luff decided an overall top 10 finish would be the perfect way to finish the season off.
And while they battled with some fuel issues, the pair managed to keep the car in perfect working order to cross the line in 10th spot.
“When we realised we had no competition the top 10 finish became a pretty strong goal,” he said.
“We did have some issues with fuel surges so we could only run for 65-70 minutes before we had to come in and re-fuel.
“But we were lucky in regards to tyres – I’d hate to know how many blown tyres there was across the weekend and we were lucky not to get them.
“We don’t have the heaviest car but we thought if we could jag a top 10 finish that would be a great way to go out.”
Thewlis was named outright winner of the championship, however, he added Luff would have been a co-winner but for the fact he missed the Winton round due to prior commitments.
“It has been a really good year,” Thewlis said.
“A lot of work, focus and commitment goes on behind the scenes – it’s not a matter of just turning up on the day, you really do need to commit fully.
“Some people don’t realise just how much work goes into it.
“It’s a little bit bittersweet because I would have loved ‘Luffy’ to be up there with me but unfor- tunately he missed one round – still 1-2 in the championship is a fair effort.”
While the series for 2018 may be over, Thewlis still has commitments with racing at the Wakefield 301 this weekend before an endurance event in December at Winton.
Thewlis also said there was a chance he and Luff could jump up to the B1 Class next year with the Bathurst 6-hour at Easter next year already locked in.
“I would like to go up to the higher level but we’ll see what happens,” Thewlis said.
“MWM Racing, who we race for, just won two championships so the team is on a high at the moment.
“I’m sure we’ll sit down and work it out.”
FLYING AROUND: Despite being in class D, Thewlis and co-driver Richard Luff performed better than some higher class cars.