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RECORD FALLS, F1 WINS AT THE BEND

JOSH KEAN has smashed The Bend Motorsport Park’s West Circuit lap record, while Sam Shahin has claimed The Bend Classic shootout after a dramatic day in the second annual The Bend Classic.

Shahin (Dallara F189 Cosworth) powered to victory in the end of day shootout for the 10 fastest cars of the event after Kean’s Footwork broke on his hot lap, ending his charge to not only win the event, but re-set the lap record too.

The Adelaide driver, an ex-Supercars racer, had earlier set a stunning 1m10.085s best on Sunday afternoon to claim the fastest ever lap of The Bend’s West Circuit, but was targeting a sub-70 second effort in the shootout.

Shahin’s personal shootout effort was a full two seconds quicker than his previous best in his ex-BMS Scuderia Dallara Formula 1 car, and came despite battling persistent gearbox issues throughout the event.

With Kean failing to complete his lap, Yasser Shahin second overall in his Porsche 911 GT3R (and fourth in his Formula Toyota) while Brenton Grigoul was third quickest in his Larrousse after scything nearly 1.6 seconds from his previous best lap in his solo effort.

“I’m thrilled. I didn’t feel I had it in me,” Sam Shahin said.

“I told the guys that if I crack a 15-flat that’s what I’ve got in me. We destroyed half the gearbox yesterday so the boys from Team BRM rebuilt second gear overnight. We lost third gear earlier in the day and then fourth in the class shootout – it was jumping into neutral.

“It was behaving for all except one corner but I gritted my teeth and took turn five flat and turn four in fourth gear.. these open wheelers.. I get it!”

The 2020 winner said he had nothing for praise for Josh Kean and marvelled at his record-smashing lap set earlier.

“Josh was the absolute standout, he was robbed and really deserved that lap,” he said.

“He belted out a 10-flat earlier which is just astonishing: It’s five seconds faster than the track record. It is unfortunate that these cars can be so finicky.

“It’s been an absolute pleasure to just sit in the garage and watch he and his dad, Chris, work with the cars they generously bring to the track. I’m sure he’ll be back next year.”

Benjamin Runciman was fifth in the shootout in his Lamborghini Huracan, Chris Meulengraaf, Kevin Weeks, Malcolm Ramsay and Paul Russo completing the runners who made the top-10.

The six categories involved in the event each offered plenty of competition.

Don Jeffries (Elfin Streamliner) won the Vintage class while Jim Doig, a staple of South Australian Historic motorsport, won the Open Sports category in his Motorlab ASP.

Noted local motorsport identity Simon Pfitzner powered his Datsun Stanza to victory in the competitive Historic Sports Sedan class and Peter Harper (Escort) in Classic Production. Yasser Shahin took out Modern Sports in his GT3R. As well as winning the Shootout, Kean’s non-finish allowed Sam Shahin to take the F1 / Open Wheel category.

The 2020 Classic proved extremely successful with a host of families enjoying the action in stunning Father’s Day sunshine at The Bend.

The event will return in 2021 with the circuit to confirm the date and other key details later this week.

The event provide the thirst of South Australian fans for top-quality motorsport events, The Bend to host two rounds of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship later this month.

THE BEND CLASSIC: SHOOTOUT RESULTS

1Sam ShahinDallara F189 Cosworth1m13.542
2Yasser ShahinPorsche 911 GT3R1m16.637
3Brenton GrigoulLola Larrousse LC881m17.001
4Yasser ShahinFormula Toyota FT-401m17.816
5Benjamin RuncimanLamborghini Hurracan1m18.495
6Chris MeulengraafPorsche 911 GT3 Cup1m23.680
7Kevin WeeksLamborghini Gallardo Superleggera1m24.861
8Malcolm RamsayPorsche 911 GT3 Cup1m27.189
9Paul RussoFerrari 360 Challenge1m27.220
10Josh KeanFootwork Arrows FA15DNF

THE BEND CLASSIC: CLASS WINNERS

Dan Jeffries – Vintage
Jim Doig – Open Sports
Simon Pfitzner – Historic Sports Sedans
Sam Shahin – Open Wheel / F1
Peter Harper – Classic Production
Yasser Shahin – Modern Sports
‘Best in Show’ award; Larry Kavanagh