It wasn’t meant to be for Cambridge driver Nick Ross at round five of the BNT NZ Touring Car Championship at Manfeild near Feilding over the weekend.
Despite having one of the fastest cars on the circuit, the Total Lubricants Nissan Altima was plagued by mechanical gremlins, putting a dampener on what was a promising weekend.
Ross qualified in second place just 0.210 of a second behind championship leader Simon Evans and over the weekend’s three races Ross had a second place, a DNF and a seventh place finish, leaving him seventh overall for the weekend.
The poor results were harder to take for Ross and his Concept Motorsport team considering they claimed three podium finishes with their Total Lubricants Nissan Altima at the previous round held at Teretonga last month.
“It was a trying weekend to say the least,” said Ross.
It was the new part ‘demon’ getting us again, which is what we experienced at Ruapuna in January. We put new parts on the car and they are the ones that fail – it’s very frustrating.”
“We were going alright in the first race on Saturday and finished second which was great. But then on Sunday we had numerous problems, the gear box was the main one, but we also had a fuel rail break in race two.”
Ross said that despite the reliability issues plaguing his team, he still has some confidence.
“We know we have the speed in the car, we just need reliability so that we can be up the front and stay there.”
“We’ll head home, regroup and go again at Hampton Downs next month.”
The BNT NZ Touring Car Championship now heads to Hampton Downs for the sixth and final round of the championship, March 11-12.
Nick Ross, the TOTAL Lubricants Nissan Altima and Concept Motorsport will again be supported this season by TOTAL Lubricants, Jim Wright Nissan, RYCO 24•7, C&R Developments, Team Wino, Auto Trail Ltd, 82C, Cambridge Hire Centre and Tyre Traders.