Ex-national champion on mission at Qld Raceway
SIX-time National Sports Sedan champion Kerry Baily will make his first start of 2014 with the Kerrick Sports Sedan Series at Queensland Raceway this weekend.
The Willowbank circuit is hosting the series from today until Sunday.
Baily, 60, last hoisted the championship trophy in 2012.
He was leading the series by 40 points heading to the penultimate round of 2013 when technical issues saw him excluded before business commitments required him to step away from the final round.
Now, the Gold Coast based, Tasmanian-born racer is set to make his return at Queensland Raceway.
"I am pretty excited about returning to the Kerrick Sports Sedan Series," Baily said.
"Last year at Phillip Island we were leading the championship by 40 points, but then we were knocked out after falling foul of the noise regulations, seeing us drop from 40 points ahead to 40 points behind.
"Then when considering the final round, I had to make the decision to withdraw when my business commitments had to take priority following a fire which decimated one of my interests in Tasmania.
"I haven't raced since then, and with the QR round being so close to my home base I thought I had better get out there and have a go.
"I am hopeful that we can also compete at the upcoming Phillip Island and Sydney Motorsport Park events and hopefully do the full series next year, but it really just comes down to those business commitments."
While Baily and his distinctive #58 Rent Depot Aston Martin DBR9 may have been off-track since September, the experienced racer is already feeling back at home behind the wheel.
"With the intense focus on business for the last 12 months the car has just been sitting in the workshop untouched and I haven't been on-track at all," Baily said.
"Last week I did about three laps in the car out at Queensland Raceway and it felt really good, it was definitely good to be back in the car.
"The car is generally pretty bulletproof so we haven't made any changes ahead of this weekend, both because it is a good car and also because we simply haven't had time development-wise.
"Having said that, the other guys have surely been developing their cars over the last 12 months so we will be behind the eight ball a little bit, but we can only do our best.''
Baily will be joined on track by 13 other racers, including fellow Queenslanders Phil Crompton, Shane Hart, Colin Smith, Jason Heck, Shane Bradford and Warren Davis; Victoria's Darren Hossack, Michael Robinson, Bruce Henley and Steven Tamasi; Tasmania's Bruce Banks, West Australia's Tony Ricciardello and New Zealand's Bob McLoughlin.