The final round of the HQ NSW State Championship was held at a very windy Sydney Motorsport Park. This would be the title decider between Brett Osborn and Chris Molle. Osborn was leading the points and all he had to do was finish the three races at the pointy end and he would become champion. A welcome entry to this meet was the return of previous front runner Layton Crambrook.
A good size field came out to qualify, to be exact 25 beautifully presented HQ’s glistened in the sun early Saturday morning. Osborn stamped his authority claiming pole from his rival Chris Molle. Jason Molle and David Proglio occupied the second row, while row three consisted of Duane Cambridge and Darren Parker.
The two front runners made a clean start in the first race, they drove side by side through turn 1 and into turn 2. Osborn edged out his rival and proceeded to lead the race. In the normal first lap skirmish, Cambridge had a small spin coming out of turn 2. After a quick tour of the grassy infield he rejoined the race towards the rear of the field.
Once the race had settled into a rhythm, a group of three cars emerged at the front; Osborn, C Molle and J Molle. Proglio was running in 4th and being hounded by David Allan and Luke Harrison. Cameron Stuart came in too hot at turn two and spun his car, Peter Lynch was the next driver on the scene and proceeded to take avoiding action by touring the outfield.
The following lap Stuart Spry and Shane Cox had a side by side coming together in the braking zone of turn two, both drivers continued on. Up front Jason Molle ran into trouble and retired. In the end Osborn was too good for Chris Molle. Harrison beat the rest to come home in 3rd.
In race 2 it was Chris Molle who made the best start, and as the cars came around for the first time the order was C.Molle, Osborn, Proglio, Allan and Tristan Wolds. C. Molle’s lead did not last long, Osborn put on a great move to claim first position. The race settled down with Osborn and C. Molle dicing up front, then a three car dice for 3rd position between Proglio, Allan and Cambridge. Behind them was also another intense dice between Wolds, Harrison and Shaun Boland.
Probably the drive of the race was Crambrook starting from last, found himself mid-pack by lap 5. Chris Buckley coasted into the pits to retire, and he was soon followed by Ian Mclean, Cameron Stuart and Grant Jury. Spry went wide at the last turn before the straight, he did not lift and toured the outfield at high speed for a few hundred meters. In the end Osborn was relentless and won from C. Molle, Allan arrived home in 3rd.
The last race of the year started with Osborn making a great start from C. Molle. These two drivers stayed up front throughout the race missing all action behind. All the competitors put everything on the line knowing this was the final. Stuart Lillie and Jason Molle toured the grass at high speed between turn 1 and turn 2. As this was happening Parker had a major lock up at turn 2 and Crambrook also spun in turn 2. It was mayhem up and down the field, Lynch went wide at the same turn and rejoined after touring the grass.
This mayhem continued throughout the race, Lillie went wide again after turn 1. J. Molle and Proglio had a touch on the approach to turn 2 with the former coming out on top. The surprising result amongst this carnage was Jason Molle progression in the race, from virtual last to 3rd
position. Cranbrook spun again at relatively high speed at turn 2, his car pirouetted and somehow missed everybody.
Unfortunately, the biggest incident of the race was Cambridge running out of brakes at the end of turn 2. Cambridge tried to wash some speed off but it was to no avail. He eventually hit the tyre wall head on, a good 50m past the track edge. The front of the car sustained major damage and unfortunately ended his race prematurely.
Up front Osborn was in a class of his own, he won comfortably from Chris Molle and the hard charging Jason Molle was 3rd. Congratulations to Brett Osborn on winning his fourth straight NSW HQ state Championship, an unbelievable achievement. Commiseration to Chris Molle, no matter how hard he tried Osborn always had an answer.
Brett Osborn statistics are second to none, in 8 seasons they are as follows:
122 race starts
20 pole positions