Two teams go to war
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For the second year in a row, the ENEOS North Island Endurance Series title chase is set to go down to the wire.
The third and final round of the season takes place later today at Pukekohe Park Raceway, and the battle over supremacy in the three-hour series is expected to be a nail biter as two teams war with each other.
In one corner is Smeg Racing, with drivers Simon Evans and Gene Rollinson piloting the team's Audi R8 LMS GT3.
Entering the season as favourites, the duo took top honours at round one of the series at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park.
However, they were unable to repeat the success at round two at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park.
This was where defending champion team Trass Family Motorsport rose to the occasion in its Ferrari 458 GT3.
With Sam Fillmore and Danny Stutterd behind the wheel, they outdid the Audi squad on strategy and race pace in the dying laps.
The two teams enter today’s race tied on 195 points — effectively making today's race a winner-takes-all scenario.
Two elements — the weather and the circuit — could throw a spanner in the works for the full grid of teams and cars.
Like rounds one and two, weather predictions are for rain. It's also been a few years since the category visited the Pukekohe facility, which has replaced Manfeild Circuit Chris Amon as the series finale.
Another threat for the leading three-hour teams are other thirsty entrants — International Motorsport's Neil Foster and Jonny Reid, and the highly modified former V8 Supercar that car owner Nick Chester will share with Cameron Jones.
There are also numerous other class titles still to be resolved for some of the category's less powerful teams.
The one-hour title winner is also set to be decided. Matt Whittaker of International Motorsport is in the hot seat, after a round-one win and a second place in round two.
He is the runaway leader of the series, after lead rivals Ian Hayr and Chris Henderson endured tough runs at Hampton Downs.
Follow a live stream of today's North Island Endurance Series action by visiting Driven.co.nz