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Winton TCR: Bright wins as early leaders clash

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Winton TCR: Bright wins as early leaders clash
By:
Aug 31, 2019, 5:04 AM

Jason Bright took full advantage of a clash between early leaders John Martin and Will Brown to win the opening TCR Australia race at Winton.

Martin emerged in front after a frantic first lap, passing Andre Heimgartner at Turn 7 before sprinting to a 1.2s lead.

Polesitter Brown, meanwhile, was shuffled back to fourth on the opening lap, after pitching his HMO Hyundai into a slide through the Turn 1/2 complex.

Brown quickly recovered from his sluggish start, working his way back to second by the end of Lap 2.

He then immediately cut Martin's advantage down to nothing, parking his i30 under the leading Honda's rear wing.

On Lap 5 Brown made his move, passing Martin into the penultimate corner before ending up on the outside of the Honda into the final corner.

The pair then made contact that left Brown in the grass, the off-track excursion dropping him back to third behind Jason Bright (Alliance VW).

Martin's challenge unravelled two laps later thanks to a left-front puncture from the Brown contact.

That left Bright in control of the race, the former Supercars star keeping Brown at bay as he racked up a second win of the season.

"We were good out of the box, the first couple of laps I could see everyone was struggling for tyre temps," said Bright. 

"The car was good all race, I'm really happy."

Brown, meanwhile, was left to rue damage from the Martin clash that prevented him from taking the fight too Bright. 

"I thought I left plenty of room on the inside but I just got pushed off," he said. 

"I'll have to look at the footage. You never know until you look at the footage from the outside. But it did a bit of damage to our right front, so made it a bit tough."

Brown's title rival O'Keeffe (ASM Alfa) came home a distant third, complaining of issues with his brake pedal.

"I just can't stop the car, it feels so dangerous," he said. 

"I'm glad to make it to the finish of that one. It was super tough, I was just trying to keep composed. 

"That's one of the toughest races I've done."

Tony D'Alberto emerged as the best Wall Honda in third thanks to Martin's dramas, followed home by Nathan Morcom (HMO Hyundai) and Aaron Cameron (MPC VW). 

Heimgartner dropped back to seventh after a half-spin on Lap 6.

Race results:

Pos Driver Team Car Time
1  Jason Bright     Taskforce / Alliance Autosport Volkswagon Golf GTI  23:06.9034
2  William Brown      HMO Customer Racing            Hyundai i30N         23:07.8427
3  Dylan O’Keeffe   Ashley Seward Motorsport       Alfa Romeo Giulietta 23:15.0596
4  Tony D’Alberto  Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   23:16.5374
5  Nathan Morcom      HMO Customer Racing            Hyundai i30N         23:20.0936
6  Aaron Cameron      Melbourne Performance Centre   Volkswagen Golf GTI  23:20.1533
7  Andre Heimgartner  Kelly Racing                   Holden Astra         23:21.9711
8  Russell Ingall    Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            23:22.3507
9  Tim Brook          Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   23:26.9974
10 Liam McAdam        Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            23:39.1908
11 Molly Taylor       Kelly Racing                   Subaru WRX STi       23:50.8315
12 Alexandra Whitley  Alliance Autosport             Volkswagon Golf GTI  24:00.1609
13 Leanne Tander      Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            24:17.9154
14 John Martin        Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   23:33.1349
15 Bryce Fullwood      Kelly Racing                   Subaru WRX STi       23:55.8469
16 Hamish Ribarits    Kelly Racing                   Holden Astra         22:02.9527
17 Jordan Cox         Garry Rogers Motorsport        Alfa Romeo Giulietta  8:54.4822
18 James Moffat       Garry Rogers Motorsport        Renault Megane RS     
19 Chris Pither        Garry Rogers Motorsport        Renault Megane RS     
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About this article

Series TCR , TCR Australia
Event Winton
Drivers Jason Bright
Teams Matt Stone Racing
Author Andrew van Leeuwen