Second Race Win For Halliday in Carrera Cup New Zealand's Matt Halliday continued his impressive early run in 2004 by scoring his second race win out of three Carrera Cup starts this afternoon at the Foster's Australian Grand Prix at Albert ...
Second Race Win For Halliday in Carrera Cup
New Zealand's Matt Halliday continued his impressive early run in 2004 by scoring his second race win out of three Carrera Cup starts this afternoon at the Foster's Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park.
Starting from second on the grid, the 24-year-old International Motorsport NZ/Giltrap Prestige driver put in consistently fast lap times to stay ahead of his close Porsche rivals Alex Davison (Greg Murphy Racing/Glenfords Discount Tools) and Jim Richards (Jim Richards Racing/OAMPS Insurance Brokers).
In an incident-marred eight-lap race, Halliday was never headed after overtaking Davison on the first lap and showcased his ability to stay composed and clean in his 2004 Porsche GT3 911.
Halliday, Davison and Richards have completed the trifecta in all three Carrera Cup races at Albert Park so far with tomorrow's final six-lap race set for another thrilling showdown between the trio.
The Foster's Australian Grand Prix is a good preview of the full championship season ahead in the all-Porsche category, with today's result once again highlighting that last year's champion Richards has a fight on his hands to win a second title.
"These young guys (Halliday, Davison) are as good as any young drivers in the world, and I've got the best seat in the house to witness them in action," said Richards.
The first safety car period of the 2004 Carrera Cup season occurred in today's race after Dean Cook (Redline Promotions/Paragon Financial Group) sent his GT3 911 into a double spin and into the wall on turn three of the opening lap.
On race resumption two laps later, Halliday maintained the ascendancy and clocked the fastest lap of the race in the process -- 2:02.576 on lap six.
"I've been trying to stay straight throughout all the races so far, and it has all panned out well except for yesterday's gearbox drama," said race victor Halliday.
Despite a damaged exhaust 24-year-old Davison stayed ahead of Richards until the finish to claim second. Richards still has a card to play in tomorrow's final race with two new tyres, after only using four across the first three races.
Another revelation in the Carrera Cup has been newcomer Fabian Coulhard (Greg Murphy Racing/Team Braun) who showed good speed and skill to place fourth following his fourth in race one on Thursday and sixth in race two yesterday.
The 21-year-old former New Zealand Formula Ford champion received plaudits from one-of-the-best in Jim Richards after the race, and looks set to be another young gun in 2004.
Fifth place went to Allan Simonsen (Mark Coffey Racing/Barry Plant Doherty Real Estate), while Charlie O'Brien (Charlie O'Brien Motorsport) had a ding-dong battle with another experienced campaigner in Peter Fitzgerald (Peter Fitzgerald Racing/ENJO, Acer) for sixth, with the spoils going to O'Brien.
If there was a 'hard charger' award for the Grand Prix, Jonathon Webb (TEKNO Autosports) would be writing his name on the certificate after rising from the second last row of the 30-car grid to 11th.
The Carrera Cup is the most successful 'one make' championship in the world with 30 close-to-identical Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars built by Porsche' racing arm in Weissach, Germany racing at the Foster's Australian Grand Prix. All cars have a top speed in excess of 300 kilometres per hour with a 400-horsepower, 6 cylinder Boxer engine which revs to 8000 RPM.
The Michelin Carrera Cup at the Foster's Australian Grand Prix concludes tomorrow afternoon with race four at 12.15pm.