Invercargill racing driver Liam MacDonald has made it back to back titles in Class 2 of the BNT V8’s Championship after the final round at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park in North Waikato this weekend.
Last year MacDonald dominated the championship but this year he did it the hard way, dominating early on before overcoming plenty of adversity through the middle rounds of the season. However he still racked up seven race wins in the Speedy Signs Ford Falcon during the campaign to clinch the title in the eighteenth and final race of the season on Sunday afternoon.
The final round was a tense affair. MacDonald qualified the Speedy Signs Ford Falcon third fastest on Saturday morning and was running second ahead of championship rival Chelsea Herbert in the opening race on Saturday afternoon until Herbert made contact, spinning the Southlander around a lap from home. Herbert went on to finish third while MacDonald recovered to finish fifth. After taking a twelve point lead into the round the incident cost MacDonald valuable points sending him into the final day of the championship with just a one point buffer over Herbert.
The second race, held on Sunday morning, was a reverse grid event which MacDonald led for most of the distance, albeit in a huge battle with Brock Timperley. At the end he crossed the line to take the win while Herbert, who had climbed as high as second, spun after contact with Jason Bargwanna of Australia which dropped her to fifth. The result set up a huge finale with MacDonald extending his points lead over Herbert with Timperley still in contention in third place.
Second place in the final race was enough to give the Southlander his second title in succession as he worked to ensure he stayed ahead of his main rival, Herbert.
MacDonald was “stoked” to retain the title. “Last year we had no troubles all season, this year we had to overcome some problems and we had some DNF’s,” (non-finishes). “It feels good to have taken the championship.”
MacDonald’s campaign in the 2017/2018 BNT V8’s Championship is supported by Speedy Signs, EmbroidMe, Southern Automobiles, Castrol NZ, GT Radial NZ, Million Dollar Cruise Queenstown, Marsh Motorsport, Classic Car Warehouse Invercargill, Advanti Racing and YHI NZ, Ideal Electrical, BNT NZ, Auto Windscreen Replacement Ltd, Southern Bolts & Fasteners, Auto Fab, Ralston Sheetmetal, Invercargill; NAC Insurance, CS Auto Refinishing, Invercargill, Dave Loudon Photography, Discount Tyres Invercargill, What’s On Invers and a Sport Scholarship with the Community Trust of Southland.