Moffat confident Renault speed has been unlocked
James Moffat says that any concern about a lack of speed from the Renault Megane RS TCR has been dispelled after a rising turn of form at the recent round at Sydney Motorsport Park.
Moffat and Renault team-mate Dylan O’Keeffe were two of the stand-out performers at the western Sydney circuit, with O’Keeffe qualifying on pole and Moffat starting third.
While O’Keeffe’s car was penalised for a grid infringement for lifting the bonnet to correct a mechanical gremlin, Moffat raced on to take second place – his best result of the year – before taking two fifth places in Sunday’s races.
The former Supercars regular turned endurance driver says that while the opening rounds proved difficult for the Renaults, he feels that the hard-working Garry Rogers Motorsport team have turned the corner.
“The biggest thing for me from Sydney was to see the smiles on the faces of our team,” said Moffat.
“I was just really happy for everyone. Having Dylan on pole, I was third, I was just stoked for everyone, particularly the guys who have been on the Renaults, slogging away this year.
“For sure, the first few rounds have been a struggle. If it wasn’t reliability, it was the shunt in Tassie, then changing chassis. It has been relentless on the whole crew, but to see the way they have kept going, working as hard as they can, it’s nice for those guys to get some sort of result.”
Moffat says that the Sydney results could have been even better, if not for a blotched start at the beginning of Race 2.
He says that a failed attempt at a new start procedure was to blame, seeing him drop from the front row to be as far back as eighth on the first lap.
“Sunday was all on me – I ballsed up the start, and I was trying to do something different and it backfired,” he said.
“I actually said to Baz (Barry Rogers) after the weekend, “if you had said we’d have three top fives by the end of the weekend, we’d be over the moon,” and that’s exactly how it turned out.
“For sure, I think I gave away some much better results, but I’m confident that this is the turning point, and hopefully we can continue that for the rest of the year.
“And considering that we are still basically the only two Renaults running in the world at the moment, and what we are fighting against that have multiple brands racing in different countries, we are doing pretty good.”
The next round of the Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series will be held at Queensland Morgan Park Raceway on June 25-27.
Tickets must be pre-purchased. CLICK HERE to secure your admission to Morgan Park.