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HMO Customer Racing has maintained their momentum in the TCR Australia Series after a strong showing at The Bend Motorsport Park for Round 3.
Will Brown proved again why he’s the driver to beat in 2019, with another Race win and podium throughout the weekend of racing.
Qualifying – Nathan Morcom P6, Will Brown P16
Rain would fall on the track for the large part of Friday, giving the TCR Australia cars their first taste of the wet in 2019.
Will Brown was apart of a freak collision when the #30 car aquaplaned into the back of James Moffat on the entry to Turn 6 during the mid-stages of Practice 1.
Brown’s front was heavily damaged, forcing him straight into the garage as the repair on the #30 car begun.
The HMO Customer Racing team managed to get Brown’s car repaired before Practice 2 but struggled on track with understeer to finish low on the timesheet.
It was a strong start for Nathan Morcom in Practice 1 claiming his best finish in a Practice session so far with P3.
Qualifying on Saturday morning provided another wet track for Brown and Morcom as the rain drizzled down before the session started.
Morcom went to P5 during the mid-stages of Qualifying but dropped back one spot to finish P6, his Series-best result to date.
Brown struggled with his car set-up as he recovered from Friday’s incident, qualifying in his lowest spot of the Series in P16.
Race 1 – Will Brown P2, Nathan Morcom P4
The rain had stopped by the time Race 1 got underway on Saturday afternoon.
Brown bolstered off the starting line, sending the #30 car from P16 to P6 within the first few laps.
Morcom struggled off the start, his car in P11 by the exit of Turn 1 in the opening lap.
It was a stellar comeback for Brown as the Series leader climbed through to field to sit in P2 at one point but unable to hold the spot, crossing the line in P3.
Morcom demonstrated the pace he had around The Bend on Friday, slicing through the field to cross the line in P5.
Jordan Cox (P2) and Alex Cameron (P4) were given penalties from separates incident during the Race, meaning Brown would move up into P2 and Morcom into P4.
Race 2 – Will Brown P1, Nathan Morcom P7
Brown took initiative off the line in Race 1, moving into the lead down into Turn 1 on the opening lap and made a strong getaway to lead the field by 2.8sec after the opening lap.
Morcom was slow off the start line and moved back to P7 by the end of straight.
Two safety cars were deployed during the Race but Brown was faultless on both restarts as he crossed the finish line in P1 for his 4th Race win of the Series.
Morcom was amongst the quicker cars on track but was unable to move from P7 throughout the entirety of the Race.
Race 3 – Will Brown P5, Nathan Morcom P8
After winning Race 2, Brown started from the front of the grid for Race 3 but the #30 Car started poorly, moving back to P3 into the first turn on Lap 1.
Morcom got a better start and held his spot in P7.
Brown would eventually be picked off by Moffat and Cox during the Race and would go back to P5.
Similarly, Morcom was passed by Ingall, O’Keeffe, D’Alberto in the late stages of the Race moving him back to P9 but was promoted to P8 after O’Keeffe was issued with a ten-second-penalty from Lap 1.
Ingall made a late charge for Brown in P5 but the #30 car was good enough to cross the line ahead of the Supercar veteran.
“After such a drama riddled start to the weekend, we pulled away with some great results from Tailem Bend. The Team did an unbelievable job to repair the Car after Practice 1, it’s full credit to them. It’s a good feeling to extend the Series lead a little more, I feel we’ve built some really good momentum now so the challenge is there to maintain it” – Will Brown
“A pretty consistent weekend was had at The Bend, just wasn’t able to get the results I would have liked. Our Car pace was really good on track however, I struggled to get the Car off the line in all three Races which would have pushed us higher up the field. If we can make the right changes between now and QR, we’ll be within a really good chance to challenge up the front.” – Nathan Morcom
The HMO Customer Racing Team will now prepare for Round 4 of the TCR Australia Series, to be held on 2 – 4 August at Queensland Raceway with all races to be televised LIVE and FREE on SBS HD.
TCR AUSTRALIA SERIES STANDINGS
- 1 – Will Brown, HMO Customer Racing – 356 points
- 2 – James Moffat, Garry Rogers Motorsport – 231 points
- 3 – Dylan O’Keeffe, Ashley Seward Motorsport – 227 points
- 4 – Tony D’Alberto, Wall Racing – 213 points
- 5 – Nathan Morcom, HMO Customer Racing – 208 points
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