TTR GO BACK TO BACK!
Friday night saw the final round of the Australian Online Supercar Championship held at the iconic Mount Panorama. This was also the last live broadcast from RRTV. With the top 3 cars vying for the endurance championship separated by only 25 points, it was sure to be a hotly contested final race.
Sam Blacklock and Luke Harvey would steer the #215 Hybrid Racing Simulations Holden with Blacklock being quick enough in qualifying to put the car on the front row. After a clean getaway Sam was under pressure from Dayne Warren when the pair unfortunately came together going into the chase. Dayne dropped to position 6 and we decided to drop back in behind the #57 as a mark of good sportsmanship regardless of the netcode contact.
On Lap 10, Sam and Dayne were to lock horns again, this time coming out of the cutting which resulted in significant damage to the HRS Commodore. Pitting for a fast repair and a top up of fuel caused us to be off sequence to the majority of the field and the race would eventually come back to us in the latter stages.
Luke jumped into the car after the early pit stop and had the task of trying up pick off the slower cars in an attempt to get back up the front. Luke was able to get back up into the top 10 within the next 20 laps before luckily pitting just 1 lap before the first random safety car was called. With Sam jumping back into the car, not many of our rivals took the opportunity to pit as they had not long done so, ensuring that our off sequence strategy would continue.
Sam had a clean and uneventful stint and was able to make up some more time to the leaders before handing the car back to Luke on lap 54. Luke was in for his last stint in the car and we were hoping for a safety car shortly after our stop however it did not eventuate. We decided we would run until lap 73 before pitting to put Sam back in the car for the run home keeping in mind there was to be one more random safety car. Unfortunately for us, the safety car came out on the exact lap that we were planning on pitting in and it erased our off sequence lead down to nothing. We still decided to pit to endure only a splash at the end was needed.
With Sam in the car with only 30 laps to run, we decided an even tyre strategy was the way to go however we decided to react to what the competition were doing and as it panned out, we came out of the pits just in front of one of our championship rivals in the PSS #1 car. Fawzan was able to overtake our car going up Mountain Straight but some traffic across the top gave Sam the chance to run side by side with Fawzan out of Mcphillamy. The pair would stay side by side until the dipper however Sam made it stick and the race for the championship was on.
Chaos ensued over the final 10 laps with the lead changes allowing Brady Myers to join the party and eventually take advantage after Fawzan rotated the HRS commodore. Brady held a 2 second lead with only 6 laps remaining and with Sam limping a wounded car home, the TTL #400 duo of Myers and Berkett were never in doubt for the win. Thankfully we were able to hang on to 2nd place and secure back to back endurance championships for Sam and Luke and also a first championship for Kurt Stenberg who raced with us at Montreal and Phillip Island.
Article Credit – Trans Tasman Racing