The state’s best Autocross drivers could not come close to Mount Gambier duo Jamie Pohlner and Simon Feil at a recent round at the Mid Murray Motorplex.
In a 42-car field full of driving talent, only one other driver joined the Limestone Coast racers inside the 12-minute barrier across the five runs.
Pohlner set the pace early with a solid opening run before Feil hit back. The times continued to be slashed as Pohlner set the weekend’s fastest time of 2:16.95 and found a zone Feil could not match.
After remaining at the front of the field for the final two runs, Pohlner drove his Wilson Security Mitsubishi to victory with a total time of 11:35.68.
Feil settled for second to make it a Mount Gambier 1-2 nine seconds back, well ahead of Bradley and Michael Clements.
A strong Limestone Coast presence was almost a certainty heading into the weekend with Mount Gambier drivers filling the first four spots in the championship.
After opening-round winner Aaron Bowering and Nic Cagney could not greet the starter, Feil and Pohlner carried the Mount Gambier flag.
Driving a Mitsubishi competitively for just the second time, Pohlner was pleased to come away with the win after a consistent weekend.
“I was happy with the win considering it is still a very new vehicle,” he said.
“We have always had Subaru’s in the past, but made the change to a Mitsubishi Evo and I felt comfortable straight away to put down good times.
“At the start of the day the track was loose, so getting a feel for the car was key and it made a difference staying in tight using a handbrake to get around the corners. “Simon certainly pushed me all the way though.”
Feil said it was great to show the region’s speed, but conceded Pohlner was too fast in the bends.
“We had a pretty good weekend and we always like to push each other,” he said.
“I was not expecting a 1-2 finish because it was the first autocross event at the track. I was the quickest in second run, but Jamie started to get used to his new car and knock me off a bit and outclass me by a mile as we were pushing each other.
“It was very dry and dusty and I destroyed a set of front tyres. The track was also fairly tight for me driving an older mechanical 4WD car and struggled to release the car for the handbrake turns, while Jamie was able to do that.”
The motorsport action comes back to the Limestone Coast next weekend when SEAC Park hosts a doubleheader of Rallycross and Autocross action.
Feil is looking forward to performing his hometown race which will be the penultimate round of the state autocross series.
“It is a little bit more of a flowing track and we have sort of set the car up to that track,” he said.
“We have made some modifications and it was better last time, so hopefully the weather forecast is not too wet.”