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Bathurst International: Saturday wrap

TCR World Tour and Supercheap Auto TCR Australia

Qualifying

Tony D’Alberto has stunned the Kumho TCR World Tour field by taking pole position for race one following an exciting qualifying session.

The reigning champ led three Cyan Racing Lynk & Co entries in Yann Ehrlacher, Santiago Urrutia and Thed Bjork by four-tenths of a second.

There were seven World tour drivers occupying the top 10 in the second part of qualifying, while Josh Buchan was second best for the Australian contingent in eighth.

Race 1

A fast start from Santiago Urrutia saw the Uruguayan lead one race one from start to finish, crossing the line in first place ahead of Nestor Girolami and Tony D’Alberto.

Starting on pole, D’Alberto was slow off the line and was forced to play catchup – but was unable to make a move on Girolami despite multiple close moments between the two Honda entries.

Yann Ehrlacher was next up behind the reigning TCR Australia champ, while Josh Buchan and Aaron Cameron were the next best Aussies in eighth and ninth respectively.

The combined Kumho TCR World Tour and Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series will return on Sunday for another two epic races, starting with race two at 12:50pm AEDT.

2023 SUPERCHEAP AUTO TCR AUSTRALIA, BATHURST INTERNATIONAL.
World Copyright: RACE PROJECT

National Trans Am Series

Qualifying

James Moffat made it back-to-back pole positions in the Trans Am double header in a thrilling qualifying session, finishing seven-hundredths of a second ahead of Edan Thornburrow.

The session was a nailbiter throughout, with the fastest lap changing hands on multiple occassions before Moffat broke the two-minute 10 barrier, claiming pole position.

His teammate, Lochie Dalton would have to settle for third. However, he was only less than two-tenths of a second back.

Race 1

James Moffat successfully converted pole position into a race one win in a safety car interrupted race.

The series leader finished ahead of the impressive Edan Thornburrow, with the duo sticking together before chaos began to erupt behind, with multiple cars involved in an incident at the bottom of the mountain.

In the End, Lochie Dalton would cross the line in third in safety car conditions ahead of Cody Gillis and Tom Hayman.

The National Trans Am Series has another two races to come this weekend, with the first kicking off at 11:55am AEDT on Sunday.

2023 SUPERCHEAP AUTO TCR AUSTRALIA, BATHURST INTERNATIONAL.
World Copyright: RACE PROJECT

Gulf Western Oil Touring Car Masters

Trophy Race

John Bowe picked up a famous victory in his last Trophy race as part of the Touring car Masters category, finishing ahead of Andrew Fisher.

The gap at the front was three-tenths of a second, with Fisher also picking up the fastest lap to stay clear of third place, Brad Tilley.

Craig Buchanan was the leading NZ competitor, finishing 10th outright.

Race 1

It was a perfect outing for Marcus Zukanovic after converting pole position into a victory in the first official point scoring race of the weekend.

The polesitter won comfortably ahead of Trophy Race winner, John Bowe in his final TCM round, while Cameron Tilley rounded out the top three.

The race wasn’t drama free, with Andrew Fisher pulling over mid-race after an enjoyable race to that point while Brad Tilley had a scary moment on the penultimate lap.

Gulf Western Oil Touring Car Masters will have another two races in Sunday, with the first to take place at 10:35am AEDT.

Kumho V8 Touring Car Series

Qualifying

Cameron McLeod continued his dominance at the mountain by claiming pole position ahead of series leader, Jude Bargwanna in convincing fashion.

Bargwanna was unable to go faster than Ryan Simpson in both practices on Friday, but this time was able to get his nose in front of the newcomer to start on the front row.

Simpson will head the second row of the grid for race one alongside Ray Hislop, who finished three-tenths of a second ahead of Brendan Strong.

Race 1

It was yet another dominant display from Cameron McLeod in the Kumho Series, this time taking a nine second victory in race one around the mountain.

The series newcomer led in a lights-to-flag performance, crossing the line ahead of series leader, Jude Bargwanna – who was under pressure throughout from another newcomer in Ryan Simpson.

In the end, Simpson would have to settle for third place ahead of Ray Hislop – who was a further 11 seconds back from the podium runners.

The Kumho V8 Touring Car Series will return for another two races on Sunday, with the first kicking off at 10:05am AEDT. 

Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge

Race 2

Nash Morris made it back-to-back wins in an action-packed race two, this time finishing ahead of Hamish Fitzsimmons and Oscar Targett.

The race got off to a fast start before a safety car was called out mid race due to a number of incidents out on track, including series champion-elect, Marco Giltrap getting a suspected puncture.

Aron Shields was next across the line, with Marcos Flack rounding out the top five as the race was unable to restart.

Race 3

Nash Morris has swept the weekend races after yet another win in the one-make Porsche category, again in an incident-interrupted race.

Morris again finished ahead of Hamish Fitzsimmons in second, while Aron Shields rounded out the podium places.

The race was again cut a few laps short after Slade Orsmond brought out the safety car after a heavy incident with the wall.

Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge have completed its action for the weekend, whilst also completing its 2023 season – with Kiwi Marco Giltrap officially crowned the series winner. 

Mobil 1 Australian Production Cars and Monochrome Invited Australia

Race 1

Tim Leahey claimed the opening race win of the weekend in his first race as part of the Invited class, topping Karl Begg and Series leader, Shane Smollen.

The top three were in a class of their own, creating a gap to fourth place Chris Pappas, while mark Griffith rounded out the top five outright.

In APC, Iain Sherrin was able to best Grant Sherrin for the race win, with two-seconds the gap while Simon Hodges and Lindsay Cowham followed.

Race 2 

Tim Leahey crossed the line first under safety car conditions after contact between the race leader and Dean Campbell called out the safety car.

Karl Begg and Chris Pappas rounded out the top three in the shortened race, with series leader Shane Smollen having to settle for fifth behind Mark Griffith.

Iain Sherrin was the first across the line for the APC class, once again. finishing ahead of Grant Sherrin.

The combined series will return for the third race of the weekend first thing Sunday morning at 8:40am AEDT.