BACK after a horror run of crashes last year, Mark Pagel is set to take on the mountain again when the Hotondo Homes Super Sedan Championship Series comes to Gympie next weekend.
In Toowoomba at the weekend, he proved he still had the determination that saw him place second in two consecutive years when competing in the series previously.
Coming fifth in the second round of the comp, the first race he had competed in, was not an easy feat.
The competition in the south-east is fierce with some of the nation's best drivers all vying for a podium finish.
It was the first time he had raced his new Monaro-shell Chevy 366 V8 since crashing it first in Toowoomba and then Gympie late last year.
"I wrecked it twice, two weeks in row in some big crashes. I banged the panels up and tore the wheels off," he said.
The new car came back to Gympie with a few bangs and scrapes, after Pagel tried to avoid a crash or two in the recent Toowoomba race.
That car would cost about $100,000 to build, if you had to outsource all the work.
But Pagel was able to do 90% with the help of The Speed Shop, Pool World and North Coast Radiators.
"I bought the chassis and built the rest myself," he said while climbing in though the space where a window would be on a road car.
Essentially it is a chassis with some metal bits and a roll cage attached, and an engine Pagel and his mates have spent countless hours working on.
Gympie will host the third round of the series on November 19 and Pagel hopes his experience on the dirt track will help him lead the pack.
"It's a tough competition," he said of the series.
"Some of the best drivers in Australia will be there.
"Hopefully I can do well in front of a home crowd."
- The third round of the Hotondo Homes Super Sedan Championship Series will be held at Mothar Mountain on November 19.
- Gympie Saloon Car Club publicity officer Amy Brown said Australia's top drivers will be there racing to win.
- Some drivers will be using the race as a practice, ahead of the national series round being held in Gympie on December 29.
- Gympie boasts the only dirt surface with a kidney shape and hairpin turn in Australia.
- Racing starts at 4.30pm, gates open at 3pm.
- Junior sedans, street sedans, super street and modified production will all race.
- Matt Pascoe is currently leading the competition.