Not Your Average Winton Track Day
Your average track day usually consists of a range of cars, from little runabouts to garage-built racecars and performance orientated street cars. This selection of cars will also be driven by those with different skill sets, all attempting to go faster, sharpening their skills and the limits of their vehicle with the help of bulk track time over the course of the day.
More exclusive than track days are private days, usually used by teams for research and development purposes on their race cars before a big event or the start of a competitive season.
Tuesday afternoon, I received a message from Nathan Dundovic, best known for turning 70's Corollas into smoke machines, about a private day at Winton Motor Raceway being held by the team at LMCT+. They were allowing spectators free entry and any media to come along too. So, thanks Nathan!
Adrian Portelli, the LMCT+ team with the assistance of GRM Motorsport was using their time at Winton as a test day for some of Adrian's race cars, and also a day to let loose the supercars in his collection, the way they were designed to from the factory.
There were no garage queens here, every car was being pushed to its limits of grip, in particular, this S5000. It's always awesome to see these fresh open wheelers screaming around a racetrack, jumping over kerbs and twitching at every turn.
Watching S5000's fly around a track is I'd imagine very different from actually sitting in the cockpit and being in command. I'm sure James Moffat was giving Adrian plenty of pointers to keep this beast under control.
Supercars are also wonders to behold and have converted many kids into becoming petrolheads for life. They are however a little controversial. Many are kept in tight wraps, rarely driven because of how exclusive they are. Which I think is fair enough, I'd be scared driving any prestige car in the fear of scratching or even curbing a wheel.
So, seeing a Lamborghini Murcielargo SV, McLaren 765LT and an Aventador SJV being hustled within an inch of the Winton asphalt was a joy to see. It's a reminder that not only are these cars designed to be bonkers to look at, but more importantly, years of design and engineering is squeezed into them to make them as fast and as crazy to drive on the track. People often question why others purchase supercars as their unbelievable speed and performance will never be experienced legally on the road. But watch them on the track and the thrill all makes sense.
Despite the collection of vibrant supercars, cool Kombi's, Garry Roger's Monaro and a classic Cobra, one car was able to take all the attention.
The McLaren Senna GTR. It redefines the word extreme with its irate sounding 4 litre twin turbocharged V8. Weighing 1,374kg and putting out 607kw and 1000kg of downforce, it's an engineering marvel designed to deliver the fastest lap times outside of F1.
It is a rough as guts track monster, in remembrance of the legend himself Aryton Senna. Covered with the war paint of the infamous MP4/4 that Senna took to his first world championship, it's intended to have a just as raw driving experience, exactly how Senna would've wanted.
Seeing cars like these out in anger on a racetrack always beats seeing them on the road in traffic, or even in a Youtube video, no matter how good the audio or high-def the imagery is. Thanks again to LMCT+ for allowing us car nuts to witness these famed and renowned works of engineering on a random sunny Thursday.
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