1990 Australian Touring Car Championship
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The 1990 Australian Touring Car Championship was a CAMS sanctioned Australian motor racing title open to Group 3A Touring Cars.[1] The championship, which was the 31st Australian Touring Car Championship,[2] was promoted as the Shell Ultra Australian Touring Car Championship.[3] It began on 25 February 1990 at Amaroo Park and ended on 15 July at Oran Park Raceway after eight rounds.[4]

The title was won by Jim Richards, his third Australian Touring Car Championship victory. Richards drove for Nissan Motorsport Australia, utilising both Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R and the new Skyline R32 GT-R during one of the most competitive seasons in the history of the championship.

Teams and drivers

Jim Richards won the championship driving a Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R (pictured above in 2014) and a Nissan Skyline R32 GT-R
Dick Johnson placed third driving a Ford Sierra RS500 (car pictured in 2017)

The following drivers and teams competed in the 1990 Australian Touring Car Championship.

Team (Entrant) Car No Driver
Nissan Motorsport Australia Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R
Nissan Skyline R32 GT-R
2 New Zealand Jim Richards
3 Australia Mark Skaife
Caltex CXT Racing Ford Sierra RS500 4 Australia
8 Australia Colin Bond
Mobil 1 Racing Ford Sierra RS500 05 Australia Peter Brock
6 Australia Andrew Miedecke
26 Australia Tony Noske
Allan Moffat Enterprises Ford Sierra RS500 9 Australia Gregg Hansford
Perkins Engineering Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 11 Australia Larry Perkins
31 Indonesia Tommy Suharto[5]
John Holmes Motorsport Ford Sierra RS500 12 Australia
Bob Holden Motors Toyota Sprinter AE86 13 Australia
Australia Bob Holden
Toyota Corolla E80 74 Australia
Australia
Toyota Corolla E80 75 Australia
Bob Holden Motors Toyota Sprinter AE86 13 Australia
Murray Carter Ford Sierra RS500 14 Australia Murray Carter
Toyota Team Australia Toyota Supra Turbo-A 15 Australia
Toyota Corolla FX-GT 70 Australia Neal Bates
71 New Zealand John Faulkner
Holden Racing Team Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 16 United Kingdom Win Percy
Australia Neil Crompton
Shell Ultra Hi Racing Ford Sierra RS500 17 Australia Dick Johnson
18 Australia John Bowe
Phil Ward Racing Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3–16 19 Australia Phil Ward
Benson & Hedges Racing Ford Sierra RS500 20 Australia Alan Jones
25 Australia Tony Longhurst
62 New Zealand Neville Crichton
Bob Forbes Racing Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 21 Australia
Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 22 Australia
Chris Lambden Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R 23 Australia
Jagparts Racing Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 24 Australia
Terry Finnigan Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 27 Australia
Australia
Lawrie Nelson Ford Mustang 29 Australia Lawrie Nelson
Peter Jackson Racing Ford Sierra RS500 30 Australia Glenn Seton
35 Australia
Australia George Fury
Lansvale Racing Team Holden VL Commodore SS Group A 32 Australia Trevor Ashby
Australia Steve Reed
Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 33 Australia Bob Pearson
Australia
Ray Gulson BMW 635 CSi 34 Australia
Ian Carrig BMW 635 CSi 36 Australia
Maurice Pickering Holden VK Commodore SS Group A 36 Australia
Brian Callaghan Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 37 Australia
Holden VK Commodore SS Group A 43 Australia
Tony Mulvihill Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 41 Australia
Matt Wacker Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 42 Australia
Paul Trevathan Holden VL Commodore SS Group A 44 Australia
Lester Smerdon Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 45 Australia
Australia
Llynden Reithmuller Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 46 West Germany
Toyota Supra Turbo 47 Australia
M3 Motorsport BMW M3 52 Australia John Cotter
53 Australia Peter Doulman
Mike Twigden BMW 323i 53 Australia
Playscape Racing Ford Sierra RS500 55 Australia
Reda Awadullah Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 69 Egypt
David Sala Toyota Corolla E80 72 Australia
Australia
Alf Grant Racing Toyota Corolla 74 Australia
74 Australia
Bob Holden Motors Toyota Corolla 76 Australia
Geoff Full Toyota Sprinter AE86 78 Australia
Daryl Hendrick Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 86 Australia
Alf Barbagallo Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 96 Australia Alf Barbagallo
Car-Trek Racing Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 98 Australia
99 Australia
Australia

Season review

The opening three rounds of the championship continued the story of the previous two seasons with the Ford Sierra RS500's of Dick Johnson Racing teammates Dick Johnson (winner of Symmons Plains and Phillip Island) and John Bowe dominating podiums with only the tight nature of the Amaroo Park layout giving another driver a look-in, namely the Nissan Skyline of Jim Richards who held off Bowe in a race long duel to win the season's opening round. Another tight track at Winton Motor Raceway gave Richards his second victory of the year with team-mates Tony Longhurst and Alan Jones putting their Benson & Hedges Sierras ahead of the DJR pair onto the podium (the Longhurst Sierra's were generally acknowledged as most powerful of the Blue Oval's cars at some 590 bhp (440 kW; 598 PS), though the extra power usually hurt the Sierra's skinny rear tyres and as team manager Frank Gardner put it a year later, "We usually started at the front and worked our way back"). Lakeside Raceway saw a complete upset with veteran Colin Bond winning his first ATCC race since 1978 from former teammate Peter Brock in his Mobil 1 Sierra and Holden Racing Team driver Win Percy in what would prove be Holden's only podium finish of the season. Englishman Percy, a former three time British Touring Car Champion, had taken over the role of team manager and lead driver of the HRT in 1990 and was contesting his first ATCC.

Colin Bond made it two in a row at Mallala after Mark Skaife's spectacular debut of Nissan's new 640 bhp (477 kW; 649 PS), 4WD, twin turbo Skyline R32 GT-R, which was nicknamed "Godzilla", ended with a broken hub after storming to the lead in the early laps. As at Lakeside, Bond's steady, though unspectacular race pace paid off and as others fell away, his Caltex Sierra emerged in front. Peter Brock broke through for his first victory of the year at Wanneroo despite driving with falling turbo boost pressure for the last half of the race which actually helped minimise his tyre wear, while a broken axle to Johnson at Wanneroo saw his points lead surrendered to Richards who finished fourth in his first race of the new GT-R.

Ahead of the Oran Park Raceway Grand Finale, Richards held a three-point lead over two-time defending champion Johnson, with Bond and Brock still a chance being eleven and twelve points behind respectively. Bowe, winless despite his form, was too far behind even if he won and all other contenders retired. Richards, again in the GT-R, dominated Oran Park, making the points calculations irrelevant. Second place allowed Brock to slip past Johnson and Bond into the series runner's up position. After a poor start by Brock, who proved to be the only Sierra driver capable of matching Richards in the Nissan (though his fastest lap time proved to be almost 2 seconds slower than the Nissan), Richards drove away from the field. Behind Bowe, Longhurst was sixth after an inconsistent season ahead of Glenn Seton's improving Sierra. Percy was the best of the Holdens in eighth ahead of Alan Jones and Gregg Hansford who only had a partial season in Allan Moffat's Eggenberger Motorsport built Sierra.

For the first time since the ATCC changed from a single race to a series of races in 1969, the ATCC did not appear in Melbourne with neither Sandown or Calder hosting a round. The Phillip Island circuit, revived in 1989 for the Australian motorcycle Grand Prix which was a round of the 1989 Grand Prix motorcycle World Championship, held its first ATCC race since 1977.

Results and standings

Race results

The 1990 Australian Touring Car Championship consisted of 8 rounds with one race per round.[4] Each race was slightly under one hour in duration.

Rd. Circuit Location / State Date Winning driver Car Team Report
1 Amaroo Park Raceway [6] Sydney, New South Wales 23 – 25 Feb New Zealand Jim Richards Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R Nissan Motorsport Australia [7]
2 Symmons Plains Raceway Launceston, Tasmania 9 – 11 Mar Australia Dick Johnson Ford Sierra RS500 Shell Ultra-Hi Racing [8]
3 Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit Phillip Island, Victoria 23 – 25 Mar Australia Dick Johnson Ford Sierra RS500 Shell Ultra-Hi Racing [9]
4 Winton Motor Raceway Benalla, Victoria 6 – 8 Apr New Zealand Jim Richards Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R Nissan Motorsport Australia [10]
5 Lakeside International Raceway Brisbane, Queensland 4 – 6 May Australia Colin Bond Ford Sierra RS500 Caltex CXT Racing [11]
6 Mallala Motor Sport Park Mallala, South Australia 8 – 10 Jun Australia Colin Bond Ford Sierra RS500 Caltex CXT Racing [12]
7 Wanneroo Park Perth, Western Australia 22 – 24 Jun Australia Peter Brock Ford Sierra RS500 Mobil 1 Racing [13]
8 Oran Park Raceway Sydney, New South Wales 13 – 15 Jul New Zealand Jim Richards Nissan Skyline R32 GT-R Nissan Motorsport Australia [14]

Championship standings

Points were awarded on a 20–15–12–10–8–6–4–3–2–1 basis for the first ten outright positions in each race.[15] The best seven race results counted for each driver's total.[15]

Pos. Driver Car Ama Sym Phi Win Lak Mal Wan Ora Pts.
1 Jim Richards Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R
Nissan Skyline R32 GT-R
1st 7th 3rd 1st 5th 3rd 4th 1st 102 (106)
2 Peter Brock Ford Sierra RS500 5th 2nd 19th 9th 2nd 4th 1st 2nd 85
3 Dick Johnson Ford Sierra RS500 3rd 1st 1st 5th 7th 2nd Ret 7th 83
4 Colin Bond Ford Sierra RS500 9th 6th 4th 8th 1st 1st 3rd 4th 81 (83)
5 John Bowe Ford Sierra RS500 2nd 3rd 2nd 6th 4th 14th 6th 5th 72
6 Tony Longhurst Ford Sierra RS500 4th Ret 9th 2nd 8th 5th Ret 9th 40
7 Glenn Seton Ford Sierra RS500 12th 4th Ret 4th 9th Ret 2nd Ret 37
8 Win Percy Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 14th 9th 7th Ret 3rd 5th 6th 32
9 Alan Jones Ford Sierra RS500 8th 12th 6th 3rd Ret 10th Ret 22
10 Gregg Hansford Ford Sierra RS500 6th 8th 5th 11th Ret 17
11 Larry Perkins Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 11th 10th 8th 7th 14th 7th 7th Ret 16
12 Andrew Miedecke Ford Sierra RS500 7th 5th 10th 12th 11th Ret 13
13 George Fury Ford Sierra RS500 3rd 12
14 Mark Skaife Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R
Nissan Skyline R32 GT-R
Ret DNS Ret 6th Ret Ret 8th 9
15 Neil Crompton Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 6th 6
16 Ford Sierra RS500 16th 11th 15th 13th Ret 8th 8th Ret 6
17 Nissan Skyline HR31 GTS-R 15th 13th 14th 14th 10th 9th 11th 10th 4
18 Neville Crichton Ford Sierra RS500 9th 2
19 Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 10th 10th 22nd 22nd 2
20 Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 21st 15th 11th 20th 17th 10th Ret DNS 1
Pos. Driver Ama Sym Phi Win Lak Mal Wan Ora Pts.
Colour Result
Gold Winner
Silver 2nd place
Bronze 3rd place
Green Points finish
Blue Non-points finish
Non-classified finish (NC)
Purple Retired (Ret)
Red Did not qualify (DNQ)
Did not pre-qualify (DNPQ)
Black Disqualified (DSQ)
White Did not start (DNS)
Withdrew (WD)
Race cancelled (C)
Blank Did not participate (DNP)
Did not arrive (DNA)
Excluded (EX)

See also

1990 Australian Touring Car season

References

  1. ^ Conditions for Australian Titles, 1990 CAMS Manual of Motor Sport, pages 172 & 173
  2. ^ Australian Titles, docs.cams.com.au, as archived at web.archive.org
  3. ^ Official Souvenir Programme, Shell Ultra Australian Touring Car Championship Round 6, Mallala Motor Sport Park, 9–10 June 1990
  4. ^ a b Australian Motor Racing Year, 1990/91, pages 278 & 279
  5. ^ Clarke, Andrew (August 1990). Clarke, Andrew (ed.). "Nissan's First, Richards' Third". Racing Car News. Hornsby: Chevron Publishing Group: 42.
  6. ^ Program, Amaroo Park Raceway, Sunday, 25 February 1990
  7. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 1 highlights
  8. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 2 - full race
  9. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 3 - full race
  10. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 4 - full race
  11. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 5 - full race
  12. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 6 - full race
  13. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 7 - full race
  14. ^ 1990 ATCC Round 8 - full race
  15. ^ a b Graham Howard, Stewart Wilson & David Greenhalgh, The official history, Australian Touring Car Championship - 50 Years, page 305

External links