Josh Buchan won the second TCR Australia heat at a foggy Sydney Motorsport Park.
The relatively unknown rookie led all 15 laps in his HMO Customer Racing Hyundai to take a second career win following his breakthrough victory yesterday.
He was joined on the podium by Supercars aces Chaz Mostert (Melbourne Performance Centre Audi) and Michael Caruso (Garry Rogers Motorsport Alfa Romeo), the latter banking his first TCR podium.
There was a 20-minute delay to the start of the race to wait for the thick blanket of fog to lift enough for officials to have a clear line of sight between flag points.
Once underway, Buchan got a clean run into Turn 1 after fellow front-row starter James Moffat made a sluggish start in his GRM Renault.
That opened the door for Mostert to snatch second as he barged past Tony D’Alberto on the way through Turn 1.
Behind the leaders there was a scary moment as Jay Hanson swept across the front of John Martin’s Wall Racing Honda. The contact tipped Hanson into a spin, those right behind him lucky to avoid the rotating Alfa Romeo.
Out front Buchan quickly took control of the race, keeping Mostert at arm’s length across the 15-lap journey.
The final margin between the two was two seconds.
“That was better than the first [win],” said Buchan. “The thing got off the line like a Formula 1 car, it nearly snapped my neck muscles.
“Once we were in the first corner the grip felt okay and I was pretty comfortable out there. Obviously the tyres were wearing and I was controlling the gap to Chaz, but I’m really happy, that felt good.”
Like yesterday the Hondas seemed to lose pace over the distance, D’Alberto going from fighting for the podium to 10th by the finish.
That opened the door for Caruso to score a breakthrough podium following a string of bad luck since joining the series.
Nathan Morcom capped off a good race for the HMO squad in fourth followed by GRM Renault pair Moffat and Dylan O’Keeffe.
Luke King (MPC Audi) and Lee Holdsworth (ASM Alfa Romeo) were next, while Ben Bargwanna (GRM Peugeot) came all the way from the back row of the grid to finish a fine ninth.
The third and final race of the weekend is set to start at 1:25pm.
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