Since its inception in 2019, the Australian S5000 Championship has fast tracked itself in becoming Australia’s premier open wheel series.
The combination of old school V8 power, reminiscent of the awesome V6 powered Formula Holden series, and a modern Formula 3-esque chassis complete with Halo-device has grabbed the attention of Aussie motorsport fans young and old.
Coming into round 2 of this year’s championship Tim Macrow lead the championship closely followed by Cooper Webster by 13 points.
With the addition of a new spec Hoosier tyre being used for Phillip Island, the quick pace was shown early on Friday with James Golding setting a 1:25.2 seconds, topping practice just one tenth off last years pole position time, with Cooper Webster eight tenths behind.
The times would fall a little further in second practice. James Golding in his beautiful Valvoline paint scheme would drop into the high 1:24 seconds, with the competition coming closer, Joey Mawson just 0.16 seconds behind.
No one would beat Golding in qualifying however, the GRM driver going even faster, grabbing pole position with a 1:24.8 . Defending champion Joey Mawson would start along side him, with Cooper Webster and Kaleb Ngatoa behind them on the second row.
In Race 1, Zane Goddard driving the number 3 BRM car would go wide at the Southern Loop, halting his midfield charge. In almost identical circumstances, Kaleb Ngatoa would do the same while chasing down Cooper Webster for third. He would then have an even scarier moment off the final corner, going airborne off the kerbing but managing to save it and finish eighth.
There was no stopping James Golding however, who would lead the race, start to finish and win the first race of the weekend by one and a half second ahead of Joey Mawson and Cooper Webster.
Race 2 would see a reverse grid and a great start by championship leader Tim Macrow to jump the front row into Turn 1. Blake Purdie however would get him back at Turn 4, and would build up a lead. Unfortunately, he would go wide at Turn 1, jumping the kerb and sliding off the track, forcing him to retire the Nippy’s S5000.
That would leave Macrow to grab the win ahead of Cooper Webster and Joey Mawson, extending his championship lead.
In the final race of the weekend for the S5000’s, James Golding would line up on pole along side Joey Mawson. Although Golding would get the better start, Mawson would send it around the outside on cold tyres to take the lead. A few corners later, drama would ensue as Blake Purdie would touch the rear of Zane Goddard, causing him to run into the innocent Shae Davies, bring out the Hyundai Safety Car. Despite all the pressure from Golding, Mawson would defend his way to his first victory of the season.
With two rounds complete, the championship battle has tightened, with Tim Macrow leading on 184 points, closely followed by Joey Mawson on 183 points and the pair of Cooper Webster and James Golding both on 181. Who will take the lead after a packed grid at Albert Park is anyone's guess.