Homecoming for champion McIntyre and Tulloch Team

Tulloch team 2016It will be a homecoming for now Nelson based driver John McIntyre who returns to his home circuit of Manfeild near Feilding for the season’s final round of the three-hour North Island Endurance Race Series, in the Tulloch Motorsport Camaro.

Joined by Hawke’s Bay based Simon Gilbertson for Saturday’s 23 July title decider, it will be the first time the pair will race the German built SaReNi Reiter Camaro GT3 at Manfeild – the circuit where McIntyre began his multi-championship winning career.

“It will be fastest car I have driven there,” says McIntyre. “Of all the cars I’ve raced at Manfeild the Tulloch Motorsport Camaro has the most horsepower and grip – I can’t wait. It’s been an honour to have the opportunity to race alongside Inky (Ian) Tulloch and in his absence it is our quest to turn this opportunity in to a result at a place I know so well.”

The then Hawke’s Bay based McIntyre made his racing debut 26 years ago at the age of 13. McIntyre says Manfeild is a circuit that will suit all types of car.

There are 32 entered to the three-round endurance championship series. McIntyre and Gilbertson won the opening round at Taupo, and clawed back to finish third in the previous round at Hampton Downs.

“The Camaro will be hard to beat on the three straights at Manfeild whereas the likes of the lighter-weight Audis will have an advantage under braking. So the racing will be very very close and I predict the title will be won or lost in the strategy decisions around the pit stops. Each driver must drive a minimum of one hour and a maximum of two, so the aim is to stop only once in the three-hour long race.”

McIntyre last raced at Manfeild in 2012 – in the JMR V8 SuperTourer.

“In the first race of that weekend we came home in second place behind Jonny Reid – the winner of the previous endurance race at Hampton Downs (Audi R8). So Jonny and I have a bit of history that I’m keen to reverse at Manfeild – particularly since we are now tied on overall points.”

Sitting at the top of the table alongside Reid with 181 points, McIntyre highlights the third placed car (Ferrari) isn’t far behind.

“There is a lot at stake and it’s more than just being the fastest car. With so many cars on the track all at different speeds the first focus is on finishing,” added McIntyre.

The race is to start at 1pm (admission is FREE) with the season champion to take the chequered flag at 4pm.

Schedule SATURDAY 23rd JULY

9.45 – 10.05am: Qualifying for 1 Hour Race
10.15 – 10.50am: Qualifying for 3 Hour Race
11.00am: One Hour Race Starts
12.00pm: One Hour Race Finishes
1.30pm: Three-hour race start
4.30pm: 3 Hour Race Finishes

How to follow;
LIVE Timing; www.race-monitor.com

JMR Facebook; https://www.facebook.com/JMR47/

Tulloch Motorsport is supported by Active Electrical as naming rights sponsor, plus Waterloo Business Park Christchurch, Talley’s, USG Boral, Castrol Edge, Energizer, Phillips and Schneider Electrical also join the team for the new season.

Tulloch team take race win toward endurance title

Tulloch team win at TaupoWinning today’s first of three races for the 2016 North Island Endurance Race Championship is now reality for Southland’s Tulloch Motorsport team and their German built SaReNi Reiter Camaro GT3.

Held at Taupo’s Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park the majority of the three-hour race was held behind the Safety Car as a thick blanket of fog affected visibility. Emerging to take the chequered flag first team drivers John McIntyre (Nelson) and Simon Gilbertson (Hawke’s Bay) worked to a strategic plan – set by team owners Ian (Inky) Tulloch and his wife Annette.

Starting from pole position after dominating the earlier held qualifying session, Gilbertson led the field behind the Safety Car. At exactly one-third of the way through the race he pitted to a strategy McIntyre credited to being the race winning move.

“During that hour Simon had to keep the tyres warm, brakes warm and use minimal fuel to reduce time spent refuelling – just in case there was a break in the weather and the racing started,” said McIntyre.

Taking his turn behind the wheel, McIntyre said the speed at which they changed positions was their edge.

“About two hours 20 minutes in the weather lifted enough we got into racing and it was having that quick stop done that meant we had a time bonus.”

What followed had those present riveted to the action of the two front runners of McIntyre and V8 champion Simon Evans.

“Simon and I had a see-saw battle – it was fantastic racing. We had multiple passing moves on each other plus working around others racing; add the variable visibility and it really made it exciting. It really caught people’s attention – the hard, fair and clean racing – we really had to work for it.”

Lasting for just over 20 minutes McIntyre was focussed on getting a gap on the chasing Evans.

“Our strategy was simple; we had to factor our fuel and pit stop plan would keep us in the lead when and if the fog returned and the Safety Car came out.”

That is exactly what happened. With 14 minutes remaining and deteriorating visibility the Safety Car brought racing to a halt and led the field to the chequered flag at the three hour mark.

“The race officials did the best job at coping with the conditions and allowing racing when it was safest.
For us it was the ultimate result. It was an earned result from a pole position start and the best way to begin our title defence.

“As a team it hands Inky and Annette the trophy they set the operation up to achieve – so has a lot of meaning to me, to be able to deliver that as a team.”

The series second of three rounds will be contested at the emerging Hampton Downs circuit in three weeks’ time. It is the venue where McIntyre and Tulloch scored their first win in the car last season.

Tulloch Motorsport is supported by Active Electrical as naming rights sponsor, plus Waterloo Business Park Christchurch, Talley’s, USG Boral, Castrol Edge, Energizer, Phillips and Schneider Electrical also join the team for the new season.

Tulloch team to defend endurance title

Tulloch Motorsport CamaroDefending endurance race championship team headed by Ian (Inky) Tulloch will contest both the North and South Island endurance titles for 2016 in the Tulloch Motorsport German built SaReNi Reiter Camaro GT3, starting 4 June.

Having won the three-hour New Zealand Endurance Race Championship event in early March the team’s future received a setback when Gore based owner Inky Tulloch suffered serious injuries following an accident a week later.

Recuperating, Tulloch has committed the team to continue with its plans in his absence, continuing with title sharing driver John McIntyre (Nelson) and newly drafted Simon Gilbertson (Hawkes Bay).

Speaking on behalf of the family, Annette Tulloch, Ian’s wife, said the decision to continue was not hard to make.

“Ian enjoys his racing and has a desire to fulfil his and the teams passion to win the North and South Island titles. His recovery following the accident in March will have him out of the car for some time so it was a simple decision to put a replacement driver in the car and run the team as it was planned," said Mrs Tulloch.

“As a family we are grateful for the support shown to us all following the accident and appreciate being in the position where Ian can enjoy the privilege of defending their title.

The season starts at Taupo 4 June, the first of three rounds for the North Island championship, which concludes 23 July at Manfeild. The team then return to the South for the three South Island rounds, starting at Invercargill’s Teretonga circuit 10 September. The season finale will be held at Timaru on 15 October.

“The best part of going into the new season is Inky recovering well,” said team co-driver John McIntyre. “Along with support from Annette and the Tulloch family to continue we also have the full backing of the team. So it’s a real honour to be again representing the team and look forward to bringing home a few trophies to Inky.

“We have just tested with Simon, who has driven the car for the first time – in the wet, and cold at Teretonga. Along with track time we’ve been through driver change-over and pit stop procedure - now we are prepared to get to the track and focus on winning the title, again.

For Gilbertson the opportunity came at the suggestion of McIntyre – having mentored the Napier based businessman. The pair raced together and finished second overall in 2014 at the Taupo round of the North Island series.
Gilbertson has continued his late blooming racing career since, having done double duty in the Pirelli Porsche Championship and the NZGT2 category.

Tulloch Motorsport is supported by Active Electrical as naming rights sponsor, plus Waterloo Business Park Christchurch, Talley’s, USG Boral, Castrol Edge, Energizer, Phillips and Schneider Electrical also join the team for the new season.

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