23 March 2022 | General

Full grid set for S5000 Grand Prix return

EVERY car available to race will be on the grid when the third round of the S5000 Australian Drivers’ Championship hits the track at the 2022 Formula 1 Heineken Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne. 

A full field of 17 cars has been confirmed for the April 7-10 event that will see the category aim to complete the task they started in 2020.

That year the S5000 field qualified on Thursday and was preparing to race on Friday morning prior to the ultimate cancellation of the event due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Anticipation is high for S5000s Melbourne return to the highly modified Albert Park Grand Prix circuit – expected to suit Australia’s fastest racing cars.

James Davison headlines the new additions to the grid for the Grand Prix, the ex-pat Aussie set to drive a Pilatus-backed car prepared by champion squad, Team BRM.

Davison was on the grid at the Australian Grand Prix in 2020 and had qualified seventh, less than one second from pole position, in his first taste of S5000 machinery.

He has made a career in the United States racing in IndyCar and NASCAR competition and will return to Australia to compete for the first time since the Grand Prix two years ago.

Other additions to the field include Adelaide teenager Sebastien Amadio, who will drive for Garry Rogers Motorsport.

Amadio drove an S5000 for the first time at The Bend Classic Event in South Australia last year, with the Superkart graduate to make his S5000 racing debut at Albert Park driving for the experienced GRM squad.

Newcomers also include Conor Somers, who will field a car supported by Hi-Tec Field Services.

Somers is currently competing in the Australian Formula Ford Series and finished in the top ten in the competitive series’ most recent event at Phillip Island. He recently got his first taste of S5000 horsepower in a Winton test session.

Super2 regular Matt Chahda will make his S5000 debut in Melbourne, with his own Matt Chahda Motorsport squad that fields his Supercars entry.

South Australian Lee Stibbs will also make his S5000 debut in Melbourne, driving the ACM Finance entry raced to a podium finish in Tasmania by Josh Fife earlier this year.

Stibbs is a frontrunner in Hyundai Excel competition however will make the leap into Australia’s fastest racing cars next month driving with 88Racing – proven winners in the category.

Nathan Herne will also return to the grid for Valvoline GRM having raced at the front of the field throughout last year’s championship.

GRM have a further two names to be announced later this week that will fill the final two seats in their six-car Grand Prix entry.

The S5000 grid heads to Albert Park in the midst of an incredibly tight championship battle, just three points separating the top four drivers in the standings following the first two events and six races of this year’s Gold Star championship.

Tim Macrow leads defending champion Joey Mawson by a single point, while James Golding and Cooper Webster are tied for third overall, just three points behind the championship leader.

The S5000 field will race three times across the Australian Grand Prix weekend, with two practice sessions and Qualifying on Thursday.

That will be followed by one race each on Friday, Saturday and Sunday – the all-important finale to be contested at 10:25am on Sunday morning.

Round 3 Entry List – Formula 1 Heineken Australian Grand Prix

1 Form700/ALABAR Team BRM Joey Mawson NSW Black/Red
3 Form700/ALABAR Team BRM Zane Goddard QLD Black/Red
4 Pilatus Team BRM James Davison USA Blue/White
8 Versa Motorsport Shae Davies QLD Black/Yellow/Orange
12 Giraffe Civil Adam Garwood TAS Black/Orange
15 Team BRM Kaleb Ngatoa NZ Blue
17 Team Valvoline GRM TBA VIC Blue/White
18 Team Valvoline GRM TBA VIC Black/Gold
22 Amadio Motorsport GRM Sebastien Amadio SA Black
23 UCS Group Racing TMR Tim Macrow VIC Orange/Black
29 Team Valvoline GRM Nathan Herne NSW White/Blue
31 Team Valvoline GRM James Golding VIC Red
37 Versa Motorsport Cooper Webster VIC Black/Yellow
48 Nippy’s Blake Purdie SA White/Orange
71 Hi-Tech Field Services Conor Somers VIC Black/Orange
81 Matt Chahda Motorsport Matt Chahda VIC Black/Red
88 ACMFinance/Arrow Cars Lee Stibbs SA Blue/Pink