One of the major talking points at last week’s NSW State Championship meeting at Wakefield Park centred on Sydney driver Troy Harrison, who drove his VT HSV Clubsport in the Production Touring Car’s.
For a lot of the 2012 season the 33 year old small trucking company proprietor from Gregory Hills in Sydney’s South, had been focusing on competing in the One Hour enduro which was a feature of last weekend’s Wakefield Park meeting.
He had been competing in iRace and MRA meetings throughout the year to help develop the #9 gold HSV for the opening production car enduro of the state championship. However, it all came unstuck for Harrison and his TKR Transport team the Sunday before the meeting while competing in the iRace meeting on the Sydney Motorsport Park as a shakedown run for the enduro.
“It was in race 1 on the new north circuit,” Harrison said. “We were 7 laps in and running in 4th position, and going through the old turn 10, the rear stepped out and the car slid sideways into the concrete wall at around 160km/h.”
The impact caused severe damage to the car, and those that saw it on the day gave him no hope of racing in less than a week at Wakefield, but they were not aware just how determined Troy Harrison is.
“With the help of my good mate Dave from DSPORTZ we managed to pull off what was a mammoth repair job in a very short period of time, only 5 days,” said Harrison.
Once they accessed the damage they found the right hand chassis rail had been bent in several places, so they had to strip it right back and replace the rail from the firewall forward, while the left hand rail was also bent, but able to be straightened and repaired.
They also found the R/H Strut Tower, Radiator Support and Tie Rail had to also be replaced. They were lucky however to find there was no serious engine damage, with only radiator and fans, and surprisingly there was no suspension damage.
“We put in a lot of hours to get the car completed and we finally got it all done at 2am on Saturday morning, the first day of the meeting. So with only one and a half hours sleep we got it to Wakefield for the weekend.
They were perhaps a little lucky at the circuit, for as there were two drivers allowed for the One Hour enduro, there were two Qualifying sessions, and as Harrison was driving solo it made sense to bi-pass the first session which was the first of the day at 8.50am.
Missing the first session gave the team time to get the car scrutineered, and set up their pit for the weekend and Harrison then took to the track for session #2 which was not run until 1.20pm and amazingly set the 12th fastest time, 1m:12.1897sec.
In Sunday’s One Hour race, the final event of the weekend the TKR Transport Team finish, and finished strongly in 15th place outright from 30 starters and a commendable second in class, while he lowered his best lap time of the weekend down to 1m:11.2388sec.
“The weekend went near perfect for us, the car was fantastic and a few minor tweaks with the suspension gave me an awesome car to drive. I really do owe a lot to Dave and his boys at Dsportz, as well as Rod Thorpe for his help throughout the week.”
“All I can say is wow. Motorsport is such a funny thing, you can go from the lowest of lows to incredible highs, and I experienced both in just one week.”
“It’s really starting to sink in what we managed to pull off this week to get the car back on the track. But all that hard work with the many, many hours were definitely worth it,” he said.
“I couldn’t have done it without my Sponsors, and they are DSPORTZ Autocraft, LED Australia, Ryco Ingleburn, Bear Designs, Mainlube Oils and Mocomm Motorsport Communications.
Harrison said he has been a motorsport tragic for as long as he can remember, for his father and uncle were involved in Historic racing, and he began competing himself at 17 years of age driving his KE20 Toyota Corolla road car in Supersprints.
His first race car was a 1971 LJ Holden Torana 6 cylinder Sports Sedan, which he ran in super sprints and he then moved up to circuit racing in the 2003 NSW State Championship, and the same year saw him win the 2003 NSW Road Racing club 4 & cylinder Sports Sedan championship that year.
Since then he has competed in other cars, including a Ke20 Corolla under 2lt Sports Sedan, and a VH Commodore that he was extremely successful in.
In 2010 he decided he wanted to build a new car, and he bought the VT HSV Clubsport from the auctions, and then set to turning it into a race car, a project that took 14 months to complete, and it subsequently made its track debut in April 2011.
This year has been the first time he was finally able to concentrate on the HSV and develop it, at the same time enabling him to get more serious about his racing.