Jay Hanson gives Audi dream Supercheap Auto TCR Australia debut
AWC MPC Racing’s Jay Hanson has given his new Audi RS3 LMS TCR a dream debut to take a dominating victory at AWC Race Tasmania.
It was Hanson’s first victory in the category and makes him the 16th different driver to do so, winning by 5.2s clear of HMO Customer Racing’s Josh Buchan, while teammate Nathan Morcom took third.
In dramatic circumstances, Jordan Cox spun on the parade lap and was forced to start from pit lane.
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Hanson bobbled, but still managed to move into the lead from polesitter Nathan Morcom in the debut of his latest specification Audi RS3 LMS TCR.
Another mover of the start was Morcom’s HMO Customer Racing teammate Josh Buchan as slight contact was made with Will Brown in the MPC Team LIQUI MOLY Audi RS3 LMS TCR to secure third from the previous series winner.
James Moffat was aiming to make up for his mistake in qualifying and quickly passed Honda privateer Zac Soutar, then Brown in succession as he began to chase down Buchan in third.
GRM stablemate Aaron Cameron was also scything his way through the field to be fifth behind Moffat, but ahead of Soutar, Brown, the Honda-supported Wall Racing entry of Tony D’Alberto, the Schaeffler Peugeot 308 of Dylan O’Keeffe and Brad Shiels.
The battle for 10th was crucial as it secures pole for tomorrow’s Race 2, but Shiels lost this position to Stan Sport Wall Racing’s Fabian Coulthard at Turn 6, but after experiencing power steering problems throughout the weekend Michael Caruso was pressing in the Ashley Seward Motorsport Alfa Romeo Giulietta Veloce TCR.
Hanson held a 3.8s lead from Buchan, Morcom and a menacing Moffat on lap 18.
The battle for 10th was intensifying as Shiels paid back Coulthard to pass the Honda into Turn 6 after the latter made a mistake at the hairpin. This put the Stan Sport Wall Racing Honda Civic Type R TCR under pressure from Caruso, who was aiming to continue his charge.
No one could touch Hanson as behind the lead three, Moffat just failed to get his Renault on the podium from Cameron, Soutar, Brown, D’Alberto, O’Keeffe and Shiels, who will start Race 2 from pole position.
Coulthard and Caruso finished just outside the top 10.
Tomorrow’s Race 2 is scheduled to start at 2:25pm AEDT on Stan Sport and 9Gem.