February 24, 2017 | General


THE ADDITION of another famous racing surname and the continuation of the Johnson – Bowe battle at the pointy-end of the field highlight a stacked grid for the opening round of the 2017 Touring Car Masters series.

30 cars will compete at the iconic Clipsal 500 Adelaide next weekend with several new faces and cars joining the series for the first time – or returning to the fray.

Ryan Hansford the son of 1993 Bathurst 1000 winner and two-wheeled champion Greg will join the series this year racing a Holden Torana SL/R 5000.

Hansford finished third in the 2016 V8 Utes championship and will steer a Torana once raced by Carey McMahon. Hansford tested the car at Queensland raceway last week ahead of his TCM debut.

Meanwhile Steven Johnson has confirmed his entry to the full season with his new ‘Team Johnson’ banner and has also locked in the iconic Ford Mustang ‘Sally’ formerly raced by John Bowe in the series.

In Bowe and Johnson’s hands ‘Sally’ has won more than 70 TCM races and is the most successful single car in the series’ history.

Johnson will return to race old friend and teammate John Bowe who has committed to return to defend his 2016 Pro Masters class title in his Wilson Security / PAYCE supported Torana.

The first round of 2017 will mark the largest gathering of Holden Torana’s in TCM history: four SL/R 5000 models and one A9X hatchback entered this weekend.

Joining the fun will be Queenslander Bob Wisely who enters the series in the four-door Torana raced successfully in the series by Jason Gomersall.

Wisely who also tested at Queensland Raceway last week will run his car with No. 7 and sport a tribute livery to the iconic Ron Hodgson Motors cars raced by Bob Morriss at Bathurst and in the Australian Touring Car Championship.

Also Torana-mounted is young Tasmanian Adam Garwood – one of the breakout stars of the 2016 season.

The Launceston driver was a race winner in Adelaide last year and ultimately won the ProSports class title on debut.

The family-based team will debut a newly-constructed SL/R 5000 Torana at the Clipsal 500 having recently completed a successful shakedown of the car at Symmons Plains.

2016 ProAm class champion Jason Gomersall also returns to the series with his stunning Brock-inspired A9X hatchback now sporting BigMate branding.

And while Holden fans have got it good fans of the Blue Oval aren’t exactly lacking in strong contenders.

Noted New South Wales Historic Touring and Sports car racer Terry Lawlor will also join the series at the Clipsal 500 having recently purchased the Ford Mustang coupe raced last year by Glenn Seton.

A winner last season in Seton’s hands Lawlor purchased the car early this year from Thunder Road Racing Team Australia.

Another Mustang expected to run at the front will be Newcastle ace Cameron Mason who returns to the series in 2017 after a season away last year.

Taking over the car from his father 2007 TCM champion Steve Mason’s iconic red and white Shelby coupe’ will again sport No. 3 this season and has gained the support of several Newcastle businesses ahead of the inaugural Coates Hire Newcastle 500 in November this year.

Jesus Racing’s Andrew Fisher will debut his brand-new Ford Falcon GTHO after more than a year of construction. The Sydney-based outfit shook down the new car – nicknamed ‘Abigail’ last week and will hope to build on their 2016 season that included a victory at Sandown.  

Adelaide-based Whiteline Racing returns with two cars for Adam Bressington and Mark King while Brett Youlden’s ever-popular Holden Monaro also returns after several strong performances during a partial campaign last season.

Touring Car legend and former TCM champion Jim Richards will also return in his stunning Shannons Insurance supported 1972 AMC Javelin.

Sydney brothers Brad Tilley (Ford Mustang) and Cameron Tilley (Anglomoil Valliant Pacer) both return as does 2016 race winner Wayne Mercer (GTHO Falcon) Leo Tobin (Ford Mustang) and Darren Beale (HQ Monaro).

The opening round of the 2017 Touring Car Masters series will also double as the season opener for the Classic Porsche IROC Challenge the series to stage four rounds with TCM events this year.

Nine of the classic 3.6-litre Porsche 911 RS entries will compete this weekend including defending class Champion Greg Keene Sven Burchartz and Amanda Sparks.

The Touring Car Masters field will tackle three races across the Clipsal 500 weekend.

PHOTOS: Matthew Paul Photography / Jesus Racing / Tilley Racing


No Sponsor Name Name Surname Class State Year Make Model Cap Colour
1 SportsMed SA Greg Keene IROC SA 1974 Porsche 911 IROC  3600cc White
2 Shannons Insurance Jim Richards Pro Masters VIC 1972 AMC Javelin 5890cc Grey/Green
3 Hercules Engines Cameron Mason Pro Am NSW 1966 Ford Mustang Fastback 5000cc Red/White
4 Skye Sands Rusty French Pro Am VIC 1970 Ford Mustang Fastback 5800cc Black
6 Multispares Racing Ryan Hansford Pro Am QLD 1974 Holden  Torana SL/R 5000 5000cc Blue/Yellow
7 Wisely Motorsport Bob Wisely Pro Sports QLD 1974 Holden  Torana SL/R 5000 5000cc Yellow/White
8 Lady Luck Racing Terry Lawlor Pro Am NSW 1964 Ford Mustang Coupe 5000cc Black/Green
9 Jesus Racing Andrew Fisher Pro Am NSW 1971 Ford Falcon XY GTHO 5800cc Grey/Red
12 Giraffe Civil Contracting Adam Garwood Pro Am TAS 1974 Holden  Torana SL/R 5000 5047cc White
13 Mark Poole Motorsport Rory O’Neill IROC SA 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Grey/Silver
17 WM Waste / Illusion Gas Log Fires Steve Johnson Pro Masters QLD 1969 Ford Mustang Fastback 5800cc White
18 Wilson Security / PAYCE John Bowe Pro Masters VIC 1974 Holden  Torana SL/R 5000 5047cc Red/White
19 Tincone Industrial Services Darren Beale Pro Masters QLD 1972 Holden  Monaro GTS Coupe 5800cc Orange
28 Speedgas / Tilley Auto Garage Brad Tilley Pro Am NSW 1964 Ford Mustang Coupe 4735cc White/Blue
32 SportsMed SA Amanda Sparks IROC SA 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Yellow
35 Bigmate Racing  Jason Gomersall Pro Am QLD 1978 Holden  Torana A9X Hatchback 5000cc Red/White
38 Gawler Self Storage Bernie Stack IROC SA 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Green
46 THD Motorsport Leo Tobin Pro Sports VIC 1969 Ford Boss Mustang 5000cc Orange
56 Wasp Steering & Suspension Brett Youlden Pro Am VIC 1972 Holden  Monaro GTS Coupe 6000cc Green
60 Glennan Transport / ANGLOMOIL Cameron Tilley Pro Am NSW 1969 Valiant Pacer 4390cc Blue
62 On Demand Electrical Graeme Cook IROC SA 1973 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Orange
74 Lyndways Builders Wayne Mercer Pro Am VIC 1971 Ford Falcon XY GTHO 5800cc Light Blue
77 Red Rock Winery / Werks RRR Rohan Little IROC VIC 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Aubergine
85 Whiteline Racing / King Springs Mark King Pro Masters QLD 1970 Chevrolet Camaro RS 5800cc Red/White
88 TIFS – Warehousing & Distribution Tony Karanfilovski Pro Am NSW 1969 Ford Mustang Trans Am 5800cc Orange
90 Kalus Kenny Interlex  / Werks RRR Sven Burchartz IROC VIC 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Orange
91 SA Structural Manny Palyaris IROC SA 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3200cc Black
95 Whiteline Racing / Fabre Australia Adam Bressington Pro Am NSW 1969 Chevrolet Camaro SS 5800cc Yellow
97 John’s Furniture Removals Allen  Boughen Pro Sports  QLD 1963 Mercury Comet 5000cc Black
911 Performance 9 / Werks RRR Stan Adler IROC QLD 1974 Porsche 911 IROC 3600cc Gulf Blue