Buchan bounces back after lackluster opening round
Josh Buchan has bounced back after a troubled start to the season in February’s AWC Race Tasmania to claim the round win at Phillip Island, courtesy of two race wins.
With the Supercheap Auto TCR Australia season part of the Shannons SpeedSeries’ third round for 2023, Buchan set the scene for the weekend claiming an emphatic pole position during qualifying.
With qualifying playing an important role in such a competitive series, the New South Welshman had the opportunity to lead from the front in a dramatic opening race, converting his pole position into a race win.
The second race of the weekend was run as a reverse grid, meaning Buchan could only muster P10, but the Hyundai representative was back at the front of the pack for the all-important final race.
After getting the jump on race two winner Michael Clemente at the start, Buchan slowly built a margin as a six-car train began to form behind the leading pack.
A composed drive from the front resulted in a one-second advantage over the line, making it an impressive two wins out of three for the weekend.
Buchan was proud to bounce back from a below-par opening round and was satisfied with the weekend as a whole.
“It’s feels fantastic after the first round I had in the series,” Buchan said.
“Tasmania was a round that is traditionally very good to us but it was quite the opposite this year, so it was great to bounce back in form on my side of the garage, it was very satisfying.
“Qualifying obviously plays a big part, if you are the one who times your lap correctly you can gain a couple of tenths and find your way to the front of the pack, but to be able to convert that into two race wins was awesome.
“I said on the grid before race three that I was content if I was around fifth, which is where I thought I would be based on my form and where my car’s strengths were.
“I hadn’t had a win in race three before, I came close in Sydney in 2021 but it was something I always wanted, so I couldn’t afford any mistakes with how close it was between the top five, the pressure was on.”
Buchan credited his success to the team he has behind him and will now look to ride off the momentum from Phillip Island.
“The team I have behind me – my engineering group, the team bosses, owners and the branding we all have a good relationship and an understanding of everything we have built,” Buchan added.
“It is a very fast car, and hopefully it can continue to be fast in future rounds.
“I approach every weekend pretty much the same, you don’t know if you are competitive or not until qualifying – the goal is to win every weekend, we are not in an expensive race car to finish second – we need to maximise each opportunity and Phillip Island is one that we took.”
The Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series will return for the third round of the 2023 season at the Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton at Winton Motor Raceway on 9-11 June.
Tickets for the Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton can be purchased here.