In near perfect conditions, the Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship contested the penultimate round of the season at the immaculate ‘Spitwater Arena’ in Keith, an event which saw a mixture of celebration and heartache for the contenders, ahead of the season finale at Cabarita in early May.

Heading into the Keith round all eyes were on reigning LS-Class Champion Bastian Mullan, the ‘RIPSHIFT’ team having completed an epic around-the-clock build of one of Phonsy Mullan’s former ‘Jetspeed’ packages, in the process committing extensive time to both the engine and the jet unit as a result of the damage incurred during Nate Mullan’s dramatic off at Griffith just four weeks prior.

The package was completed just days out from the penultimate round and despite acknowledging the difference in handling to their previous boat, both brothers were quickly up to speed, Bastian topping every session on his way to a thirteenth straight finals win and with it, his third consecutive LS-Class crown.

Unlimited Superboat delivered a similar result, reigning World Champion Phonsy Mullan topping all but one session on his way to a record tenth Australian title, Tyler Finch turning in his best in the final to come within half a second of his rival, with Daryl Hutton continuing his development program to be third.

400-Class saw reigning World Champion Ollie Silverton record his second win in a month, the New Zealander in the end just too good for former Champion Justin Roylance and reigning AUS#2 Jody Ely, the title now well within Silverton’s grasp after Brendan Doyle suffered a big off during the opening qualifier, rolling the #1 ‘PULSE’ boat into the hay bales on the outside of the start-finish line whilst on target for a quick lap. The team had the boat back in the water soon after, but the damage was done, and he was forced to concede the win after a second off during the opening final – a warning light displaying mid-lap, Doyle shutting the engine down as a precaution.

And despite two young rivals taking up the challenge of the Junior Development category, former Champion Koby Bourke all but signed off his career in the category (his last run will come at Cabarita’s final) with a second title thanks to a solid, consistent season.

With a fast-flowing rotation used in past seasons, the experienced Unlimited teams knew what they were likely to expect and planned accordingly, the big question was just how much they’d advanced since they last competed on the same rotation during the closing round of the 2022/23 season, 12-months prior.

At that stage Phonsy Mullan set the benchmark time in his new ‘RAMJET’ ‘PULSE’ setting a 36.488 during the final, taking the round win ahead of Daryl Hutton and Tyler Finch, three names that would figure prominently 12-months later..

Whilst two returning former V8 Superboats Champions were set to join the Unlimited field, in the end, it was only Ken Kesper and the iconic ‘Mexican’ who made the journey to Keith, complete with his two-time Championship winning hull fitted with a supercharged LS427 powerplant. Having been out of the saddle for well over a decade, Kesper soon settled into the rhythm, but sadly the team were plagued by ongoing issues, the engine shutting down during all his early runs, in the end, they recorded just a single timed lap in the final session to qualify, before ingesting some grass in the final whilst on track for their best time of the day.

Ultimately qualifying belonged to Mullan, the reigning Champion recording a 36.403 in the opening session to break his standing lap record before a rare off in the third qualifier, running wide on the exit of a corner to throw the boat up the bank, although it was a minor off in the scheme of things, the #1 ‘RAMJET’ machine quickly back into the 36s in the following session.

Tyler Finch too had uncovered some pace, the ‘Loose Cannon’ machine also into the 36s before suffering his own setback in the final qualifier running wide on the exit of one of the final corners to bring their lap to a premature end, but like Mullan, they were soon back in the water and up to speed.

After a season where few of the teams have put a foot wrong, Keith was proof of just how hard they were pushing, Daryl Hutton also coming out of the water during the early qualifiers, just grabbing too much bank on the exit of a corner to fill the jet unit up with grass and bring his run to a premature end, but like his rivals, he was soon back in the thick of it.

Scott Krause was at his consistent best through the qualifiers, although much like Glenn ‘Spider’ Roberts, he wasn’t able to match the pace of the leading trio, joining Ken Kesper on the sidelines heading into the final three, Mullan fastest into the final, but just three tenths clear of Tyler Finch with Hutton a similar margin back in third making it the tightest grouping of drivers heading into a final, that we’d seen all season.

Hutton was first out in the final running a 37.119, two tenths quicker than his best from 12-months prior and his quickest of the day. Finch too improved his best to an impressive 36.190, almost eight tenths up on his 2023 best and two tenths faster than Mullan had been all day, but as expected, that amounted to little heading into a final against the ‘RAMJET’ team.

Like Finch, Mullan turned it on in the final, improving his best of the day by seven tenths of a second to put the result completely out of question, his consistency too suggesting he was close to the limit of performance, all four qualifiers and the two finals separated by just 1.1-seconds.

Heading into the Keith round of the Penrite Series, all eyes were on 400-Class with the emerging battle between reigning AUS#1 Brendan Doyle, reigning World Champion Ollie Silverton, and current AUS#2 Jody Ely, the trio locked in a fantastic battle for the title, the Keith round a vital element in just what was likely to play out at the end of the season.

Whilst the practice lap means little more than an opportunity for boats to warm up engines and brains ahead of the qualifiers, this time around it proved to be so much more, Jody Ely charging out the gate with a 42.7 whilst for Doyle and Silverton, they were separated by just three tenths of a second, but whilst it showed intent, the opening qualifier had a significant ‘impact’ on the Championship.

Keen to lay down a competitive benchmark, Brendan Doyle stormed off the line for his lap with an epic opening split time, but on the run into the second-to-last corner he made a slight error on the way into the left-hander which threw him ever so slightly off-line into the final right hander, the boat thrown hard out of the water and into a series of barrel rolls which ended in the hay bales alongside the start gantry.

Driver and navigator were unharmed, whilst the left side of the hull had suffered a significant impact, although a not insurmountable repair, the experienced ‘PULSE’ team of Daniel James aided by Tremayne Jukes pushing the side out to allow Doyle to continue, but sadly, the damage had been done, Doyle’s title defence all but over.

Incredibly, not long after Doyle’s retirement, points leader Silverton was up the bank, although fortunately for the reigning NZ#1, he just glided across the grass with the boat suffering little more than a bruised ego, although the result did show just how hard the title contenders were pushing.

All this just opened the door for Keith’s most recent winner Jody Ely, he jumped straight to the top of the timesheets with a 41.679, but no sooner had he locked himself in, than former title rival Justin Roylance threw his hat into the ring with a 41.351 – it was shaping up to be a round to remember..

By Q2 Roylance extended his advantage to drop into the low 40s, Silverton quickly into P2 with Ely third, but with Danny Knappick and Simon Doyle in hot pursuit, Brendan Doyle sitting out the round as the team completed repairs on the AUS#1 machine.

He was back for Q3, a conservative lap giving him the confidence to continue pushing, although he knew he’d have some work to do to catch the leaders, especially now that Silverton had broken into the low 39s.

Keen to push his advantage, Silverton went better again in the final round to record a 38.877 to emerge as top qualifier, Roylance staying well within reach with a 39.4, Ely’s best of a 40.7 (Q3) putting him third, Danny Knappick fourth with a 42.128 (Q2), Brendan Doyle carding just a 42.8 to be classified fifth, mere hundredths clear of Hugh Gilchrist with Simon Doyle closing out the seven.

Justin Roylance again showed how much a threat he can be to improve in the opening [Top 12] final, dropping into the low 39s as his rivals faltered, Ely unable to better a 41.4 whilst Silverton could only manage a 41.7 – a full 2.4-seconds slower than the 2021 Champion.

Behind them a battle was raging for a place in the second final, Hugh Gilchrist, Danny Knappick, Simon Doyle and reigning Champion Brendan Doyle all turning in their best to make the cut, with one team destined to face an early end to their day.. In the end, the first team to blink was Brendan Doyle, the #1 ‘PULSE’ entry up the bank mid lap, but not as the result of a driver error, a warning light coming on, forcing Doyle to immediately shut down the engine in order to avoid any potential damage. Sadly, post-run it was determined that it may have been a faulty sensor, but understanding that he didn’t have the pace to match the leading trio, Doyle felt it was better to concede than potentially create a bigger issue, the upshot of which was the end of his title defence..

With his rivals into the second final, the battle resumed for a place on the podium, Roylance improving again to a stunning 39.033 (remembering that Doyle’s best from 12-months prior was a 39.920!), but no sooner had the cheers died down than Ollie Silverton eclipsed that mark with a 38.997 – it was tight. Jody Ely too threw his bid in for the top step with a 39.222, the leading trio covered by less than a quarter of a second!

Whilst the battle for the top three was intense, the fight for fourth was no less entertaining, Hugh Gilchrist impressing again to improve his best by half a second and jump into the high 41s, a step too far for opening round winner Danny Knappick who turned in his best of the day to card a low 42, whilst the ever-improving Simon Doyle was all smiles to just miss breaking into the 42s, carding his best time of the day with a 43.088.

The calculators were working overtime heading into the final, Brendan Doyle’s Top 12 demise effectively ruling him out of back-to-back titles, leaving the fight to Jody Ely and points leader Ollie Silverton, a win for either would cement their favouritism for the title, so everything was riding on the result of the final.

Ely was out first to all but match his Top 6 time, recording a 39.330, slower than both Roylance and Silverton but good enough to put both under pressure. Ely’s 2021 title rival was again a thorn in the side of the reigning AUS#2, the ‘Outlaw’ machine improving Ely’s mark by a frustrating seven one thousandths of a second to go top, putting all the pressure back on the World Champion, a title he held for one very important reason..

Oblivious to the pressure, Silverton turned in a masterful lap to claim not just his second round win of the season, but to all but seal what would be an unprecedented result come Cabarita’s final, the reigning World Champion adding the Australian title to both his New Zealand and World Championship crowns, the popular Kiwi becoming the first driver in the history of the sport to do so!

Having finished the Griffith round in dramatic fashion, there was much speculation about whether the ‘RIPSHIFT’ team would make the Keith event, and if so, in what.. Ultimately all was revealed Friday afternoon when the two Mullan brothers arrived at the circuit with the ‘RAMJET’ team in their father’s former ‘Jetspeed’ hull, but whilst that had them back on the water, the big unknown was the performance of the boat, and the way in which the team would adapt.

Perhaps not surprisingly, Bastian Mullan addressed both questions very quickly, although both brothers admitted that the boat handled very differently to their two previous mounts being a little more lively in the rear end, it mattered little, Bastian quickly into the high 39s whilst his nearest rival – 2019 title-holder Kyle Elphinstone – saw a best in the mid 40s.

Typically the fight for a place in the final six was a closely fought affair, Elphinstone going toe-to-toe with the ‘Nood Nutz’ pairing of Matt and Mitch Malthouse and impressive New Zealander Matt Hareb who despite his antics launching off the edges of banks, was right in the thick of the fight for a podium position, Nate Mullan also throwing his name into the mix despite a cautious start.

Behind them a great battle was brewing amongst their rivals, Rodney Norton putting in one of his best runs of the season having made more changes to his ‘new’ ‘Hot Shot’ package, he was embroiled in a great fight with Jodie Cottam and the two O’Days who were again well off par, ongoing electrical issues continuing to plague the popular Victorian team.

As for the hero of Griffith, Juzzi Calvert, ‘The Spartan’ defied their impressive effort last time out to struggle to get a lap on the board, in the end failing to record a single qualifying time to eliminate themselves from contention before the finals.

Heading into the Top 12 final with almost a second advantage over the field, Bastian Mullan knew he needed to keep the pressure on, his 39.67 within tenths of his best of the day, as behind him, the pressure for a place on the podium amped up to a whole new level.

Kyle Elphinstone came into the finals second, three tenths clear of Nate Mullan and half a second up on Matt Hareb and old sparring partner Matt Malthouse, but despite recording a lap only four one thousandths quicker than his best, he closed out the opening final only fourth, Matt Malthouse and Hareb going quicker, whilst behind him, Nate Mullan and Mitch Malthouse were mere tenths behind, positions two through six covered by just over half a second! It was game on..

Sadly, despite his best run of the weekend, Rodney Norton missed an entry into the final six, but he was all smiles after coming out in front in his battle with Jodie Cottam, whilst for the O’Day father-and-son combination, they suffered another weekend of frustration and both failed to record a time.

Despite his rivals breathing down his neck, it appeared that Bastian Mullan was fully tapped, eking out a 39.4 in the Top 6 to again be quickest, but he was joined in the 39s by Elphinstone who dug deep to find an impressive four tenths of a second and move clear of his rivals.

In the end the fight to make the final came down to a margin of just 96 one thousandths of a second, Mitch Malthouse emerging fastest of the four with a 40.271 to Matt Hareb’s 40.331, Matt Malthouse with a 40.349 and Nate Mullan with a 40.367.. it was an epic session.

Further proof of Bastian Mullan being close to the limit of the boat was his 39.336 in the final, his last six laps separated by just 46 one hundredths of a second.. Likewise Kyle Elphinstone was on the absolute limit, his Top 3 time just six one thousandths faster than his best whilst for Mitch Malthouse, he took a conservative approach to record his second top three finish of the season with a 40.826.

Junior Development
Junior Development saw three drivers campaign the round, points leader Koby Bourke joined again by 12-year old Victorian Harry Jay and second generation driver Deklan Jukes, son of former Unlimited winner Tremayne.

Jay was elevated to the ‘open’ key early and was comfortably within the 71-second range despite a navigational error in the second qualifier, Jukes campaigning the ‘starter’ key until the final where he was let loose, jumping Jay who was caught by surprise having thought he was well clear of his new rival, Jukes emerging as second, Jay third for the round.

Up front the experienced Bourke was well clear of his younger rivals, the teenager recording his third outright win of the season to put the Championship out of reach.

For the teams, focus now turns to the final round of the 2023/24 season at Round Mountain Raceway (Cabarita Beach) across two days on May 04-05.

For fans of the Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship, they can catch all the action on 7mate and 7+ during the year (check local guides and search V8 Superboats). Updates will be posted on social media channels with respect to on air times, however episodes from the 2022 season are available ‘on-demand’ on 7+.


Rnd#6 2023/24 Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship
Spitwater Arena, Keith, South Australia
23 March, 2024

Unlimited Superboat

1. 1. Phonsy Mullan/Leigh Stuart (RAMJET) – 35.699
2. 32. Tyler Finch/Jarrod Ballard (Loose Cannon) – 36.190
3. 28. Daryl Hutton/Mick Parry (Victorian American Imports) – 37.119

400-Class (Group A)
1. 31. Ollie Silverton/Macey Roylance (PSP Racing) – 38.722
2. 67. Justin Roylance/Tracey Little (Outlaw) – 39.323
3. 33. Jody Ely/Brooke Tanner (Rampage) – 39.330

1. 1A. Bastian Mullan/Tahleah Mullan (RIPSHIFT) – 39.336
2. 219. Kyle Elphinstone/Jacob Bellamy (Blackout Racing) – 39.993
3. 69B. Mitch Malthouse/Harrison Collins (NoodNutz Racing) – 40.826

Junior Development
1. 97C. Koby Bourke (Lil Psycho) – 55.740
2. 97A. Deklan Jukes (Lil Pyscho) – 71.534
3. 97B. Harry Jay (Lil Psycho) – 72.895


Unlimited Superboat
1. 1. Phonsy Mullan/Leigh Stuart (RAMJET) – 36.712
2. 32. Tyler Finch/Jarrod Ballard (Loose Cannon) – 37.042
3. 28. Daryl Hutton/Mick Parry (Victorian American Imports) – 37.337
4. 37. Scott Krause/James Parsons (KAOS) – 39.533
5. 888. Glenn Roberts/Narelle Pellow-Djukic (Blown Budget) – 42.682
6. Ken Kesper/Kate Kesper (The Mexican) – ww

400-Class (Group A)
1. 31. Ollie Silverton/Macey Roylance (PSP Racing) – 38.997
2. 67. Justin Roylance/Tracey Little (Outlaw) – 39.033
3. 33. Jody Ely/Brooke Tanner (Rampage) – 39.222
4. 863. Hugh Gilchrist/Nikeyla Nisbet (MATTRIX) – 41.839
5. 45. Danny Knappick/Cliff Bamford (Tuff’n Up) – 42.238
6. 99. Simon Doyle/Cael White (The Mistress) – 43.088

1. 1A. Bastian Mullan/Tahleah Mullan (RIPSHIFT) – 39.405
2. 219. Kyle Elphinstone/Jacob Bellamy (Blackout Racing) – 39.999
3. 69B. Mitch Malthouse/Harrison Collins (NoodNutz Racing) – 40.271
4. 22. Matt Hareb/Matt Nairn (No Limits) – 40.331
5. 69A. Matt Malthouse/Leighton Collins (NoodNutz Racing) – 40.349
6. 1B. Nate Mullan/Nic Verrochi (RIPSHIFT) – 40.367


(Group A)
1 67. Justin Roylance/Tracey Little (Outlaw) – 39.351
2 33. Jody Ely/Brooke Tanner (Rampage) – 41.416
3 31. Ollie Silverton/Macey Roylance (PSP Racing) – 41.757
4 863. Hugh Gilchrist/Nikeyla Nisbet (MATTRIX) – 42.340
5 45. Danny Knappick/Cliff Bamford (Tuff’n Up) – 43.481
6 99. Simon Doyle/Cael White (The Mistress) – 43.802
7 1. Brendan Doyle/Holly Small (PULSE) – DNF

1 1A. Bastian Mullan/Tahleah Mullan (RIPSHIFT) – 39.674
2 69A. Matt Malthouse/Leighton Collins (NoodNutz Racing) – 40.153
3 22. Matt Hareb/Matt Nairn (No Limits) – 40.402
4 219. Kyle Elphinstone/Jacob Bellamy (Blackout Racing) – 40.424
5 1B. Nate Mullan/Nic Verrochi (RIPSHIFT) – 40.661
6 69B. Mitch Malthouse/Harrison Collins (NoodNutz Racing) – 40.718
7 267. Rodney Norton/Pam Moran (Hot Shot) – 44.420
8 199. Jodie Cottam/Will Cartwright (Steady Eddie) – 45.343
9 29B. Tyler O’Day/Xavier Jackson (Agro-Vation) – DNF
10 29A. Ron O’Day/Chris Downes (Agro-Vation) – DNF


2023/24 Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship – Series Points
Unlimited Superboat
(after round five of six)
1. Phonsy Mullan (RAMJET) – 177-points, 2. Daryl Hutton (Victorian American Imports) – 152, 3. Tyler Finch (Loose Cannon) – 151, 4. Scott Krause (KAOS) – 149, 5. Glenn Roberts (Blown Budget) – 128, 6. Rob Coley (Poison Ivy) – 48, 7. Chris Edmonds (Hazardous) – 26, 8. Sam Everingham (Excalibur) – 24, 8. Peter Monger (Mongrel) – 24, 8. Ken Kesper (The Mexican) – 24

400-Class (Group A) (after round five of six)
1. Ollie Silverton (PSP Racing) – 171-points, 2. Jody Ely (Rampage) – 156, 3. Brendan Doyle (The Girlfriend) – 145, 4. Danny Knappick (Tuff’n’Up) – 142, 5. Simon Doyle (The Mistress) – 122, 6. Hugh Gilchrist (Mattrix) – 104, 7. Justin Roylance (The Outlaw) 101, 8. Noel Verning (Quiet Time) – 94, 9. Andrew Medlicott (Gone Nutz) – 20

LS-Class (after round five of six)
1. Bastian Mullan (Ripshift) – 180-points, 2. Nate Mullan (Ripshift) – 153, 3. Kyle Elphinstone (Blackout Racing) – 135, 4. Matt Malthouse (NoodNutz Racing) – 133, 5. Mitch Malthouse (NoodNutz Racing) – 104, 6. Matt Hareb (No Limits) – 100, 7. Jade Atchison (Twisted) – 82, 8. Luke Walters (Borrowed Time) – 60, 9. Mike Hessell (Borrowed Time) – 58, 9. Darren Pollard (Disturbed) – 58, 9. Tyler O’Day (Agro-Vation) – 58, 12. Jodie Cottam (Steady Eddie) – 56, 13. Lawrie Howlett (Drop Bear) – 48, 14. Rodney Norton (Hot Shot) – 42, 14. Ron O’Day (Agro-Vation) – 42, 16. James Machan (Twisted) – 34, 17. Lance Edmonds (Solid Gold) – 30, 18. Juzzi Calvert (The Spartan) – 26, 19. Adam Sulcs (Steady Eddie) – 20, 20. Karen Howlett (Drop Bear) – 8, 21. John Verry (Blackout Racing) – 0

Junior Development (after round four of five)
1. Koby Bourke (Lil Psycho) – 144-points, 2. Harry Jay (Lil Psycho) – 33, 3. Jock Casey (0), 3. Tom Casey (0), 3. Deklan Jukes (0)


2023/24 Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship
Rnd#1 – Temora, NSW – 09 September, 2023
Rnd#2 – Keith, SA – 14 October, 2023
Rnd#3 – Tweed Coast, NSW – 05 November, 2023 (postponed – weather)
Rnd#4 – Temora, NSW – 03 February, 2024 (Colin Parish Memorial)
Rnd#5 – Griffith, NSW – 24 February, 2024
Rnd#6 – Keith, SA – 23 March, 2024
Rnd#7 [FINAL] – Tweed Coast, NSW – 04-05 May, 2024

About Penrite
Founded in Melbourne in 1926 by – then – 16-year old Les Mecoles, Penrite Oil utilised high-quality lubricants from Pennsylvania [USA] base stocks, hence the name ‘Pen’ from the base stock and ‘rite’ for the right oil. In 1979, due to ill health, Les sold the company to John and Margaret Dymond.

Almost 100 years on from those early beginnings the Dymond family have built Penrite into one of Australia’s most prominent and recognised brands. The iconic Australian-made and owned lubricants company has a simple philosophy: ‘the rite product for the application’.

Penrite Oil Company produces a large range of high-quality products suited to the Australian conditions including the exciting 10 Tenths Racing Oils range which offers a superior package of performance and protection for both competition and high performance engines.

For more information about the extensive range of Penrite Oils available, visit

7mate + 7plus
For the 2023/24 season, the Penrite Australian V8 Superboats Championship is again aired free-to-air on 7mate, and ‘on-demand’ on affiliate 7plus providing fantastic access to the sport not just in Australia, but through networks all over the world, each program going to more than 1-billion homes in every corner of the world.