Ben Bargwanna secures inaugural carsales TCR Australia SimRacing Series title
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Ben Bargwanna has become the inaugural carsales TCR Australia SimRacing Series champion, claiming the title on the famous Macau street circuit.
Driving the Burson Auto Parts Peugeot 308 TCR, Bargwanna qualified on pole and raced to a comfortable win in the first race, ensuring the title was his with one race to spare.
Bargwanna, the son of former Bathurst 1000 winner Jason, escaped the inevitable carnage that unravelled around the tight street track, with multiple incidents disrupting the order, and momentarily launched Bargwanna’s title rival Dylan O’Keeffe into second place.
But it was less than a lap until O’Keeffe himself was caught up in an incident with Will Brown, putting him out and leaving Bargwanna to simply race into the distance and claim the title.
While it was disappointing that O’Keeffe could not offer Bargwanna a bigger challenge for the title due to him being in Europe on a forgein sim, Bargwanna was stoked to have claimed the online crown.
“That was awesome. It has been an awesome series and to finish it that way with a win is even better,” said Bargwanna.
“It has been a good year, announcing that I’m doing the TCR Australia Series in real life, and winning this just tops it all off. I can’t wait to get into the real car and get into the racing.”
New Zealander Brock Timperley finished second in the first race, his best finish for the season, ahead of Luke King who held out a later challenge from Brown, who eventually faltered after running low on fuel.
Wall Racing Honda driver Tony D’Alberto finished fourth ahead of Chelsea Angelo.
In the second reverse grid race, Rowan Shepherd claimed his first win of the series, taking advantage of an internet problem for D’Alberto while the Honda racer was leading on the second last lap.
King was second from Bargwanna, Zac Soutar and John Martin rounding out the top five.
The second race saw a battle for third that was intense, damaging, and at times, comical. Jay Hansen, King, early leader Soutar, Martin, Brown and Angelo were all involved in a series of incidents on the fourth lap.
The make-up of the new-look carsales TCR Australia Series calendar will be confirmed in the coming weeks.