Decked out in 70’s disco theme, Drivers, Teams and Sponsors descended on The Pavilion Darling Harbour Sunday, 6th December to celebrate the 2015 East Coast Bullbars Australian V8 Ute Racing Series Awards night.
Twelve Awards were handed out over the night, the big three First, Second and Third Outright by Senior Vice President & Managing Director of Armor All, Paul Blair, Third Outright was the big surprise of the weekend, going to Gerard McLeod his first Series Podium win, the Melbournite also took out the Most Improved Driver Award improving form 15th overall last year.
“I don’t think people understand how hard I have to work just to get to every round and it’s just a massive reward, I do everything in our small team so the guys that come and help at the track are just amazing. To have my best championship result was amazing, we had 3 podiums and 3 race wins with an average of 5.3 for the year, so it’s a great result,” said McLeod.
Matt Stone Racing cleaned up on the night taking out The Team Of the Year Award, Team Manager of the Year with Matt Stone, Ben Syron taking out the Mechanic of the Year Award for work on George Miedecke’s Ute and Ryal Harris walking away with his third Championship title.
“We’re over the moon, for this to be our first full year in the Series and collect so many awards, is such a reward for the team, we’re so proud of all of our drivers and team members and looking forward to 2016,” said Team Principal Matt Stone.
David Sieders might have missed out on the podium but he did take out the Piston Cup Award an equivalent to the AFL’s Brownlow Medal, the award was voted by the drivers in the following categories, contribution to the category, presentation, willingness to assist and driver conduct.
“I really didn’t expect to take out this award, it’s a really nice sentiment and I’m thankful to my entire team and everyone who voted for me,” said a stunned Sieders.
Teammate Jeremy Gray claimed the King of the Track Award, for raising the most amount of funds for the V8 Utes official Charity, Ronald McDonald House South East Queensland.
Adam Beechey not only claimed the Rookie title but was also awarded with the Ashley Cooper Memorial Trophy. Cooper took out the V8 Ute Rookie of the Year Award in 2006 before joining the V8 Supercar Development Series; at only 27 years of age in 2008 he passed away tragically after hitting the wall at Turn 8 at the Clipsal 500. A registered organ donor, on passing, his heart, lungs, kidneys, pancreas and liver were donated saving seven lives, including a six year old child, his family is now strong advocates for Organ Donation.
The memorial Trophy was started in 2008 with eight drivers now on the perpetual trophy including, Glenn McNally (2008), Paul Williams (2009), David Sieders (2010), Ryan Hansford (2011), Kris Walton (2012), Elliot Barbour (2013), Phillip Woodbury (2014) and now Adam Beechey (2015).
See below the 2015 Award Winners:
1ST PLACE OUTRIGHT
ARMOR ALL Drivers Championship – Ryal Harris, Matt Stone Racing
2ND PLACE OUTRIGHT
ARMOR ALL Drivers Championship – Kris Walton, Rentco Racing
3RD PLACE OUTRIGHT
ARMOR ALL Drivers Championship – Gerard McLeod, RYCO-24/7
MOST IMPROVED DRIVER – Gerard McLeod, RYCO-24/7
MASTERS AWARD – Kim Jane, Bob Jane T-Marts
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR – Adam Beechey, Kleen Group Racing
TEAM MANAGER OF THE YEAR – Matt Stone, Matt Stone Racing
TEAM OF THE YEAR – Matt Stone Racing
PISTON CUP – David Sieders, Sieders Racing
MECHANIC OF THE YEAR:
Top Gun Engineering Excellence & Encouragement Award – Ben Syron, Matt Stone Racing
BEST PRESENTED TEAM of the Year – Erebus Motorsport for Auto One Racing Adam Marjoram and Just Car Racing’s Craig Dontas
KING OF THE TRACK AWARD – Jeremy Gray, Sieders Racing
To recap on all of the action from the final round of the East Coast Bullbars Australian V8 Ute Racing Series tune into ONE HD this Saturday, 12th December at 2pm (check local guides.)