MEDIA RELEASE/TCR Australia - Photo: Velocity Magazine Privateer Volkswagen Golf GTI driver Lachlan Mineeff will…
MEDIA RELEASE/HMO Customer Racing – Photos: Velocity Magazine
Race 3 Podium Caps Of Promising Weekend For HMO Customer Racing.
HMO Customer Racing driver Nathan Morcom recorded his first podium of the 2021 Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series during round 2 of the championship at Phillip Island Raceway. The #11 Hyundai i30N TCR driver scorched through the field to secure an excellent third place in the final race.
The weekend had begun well for the HMO Customer Racing team with both cars amongst the fastest throughout practice and qualifying. Morcom set the fastest driver Q1 and teammate Josh Buchan soon joined Morcom for the top ten decider. A tactical decision to set aside a fresh set of rubber still saw Morcom and Buchan comfortably inside the top 10 for the opening race.
Heavy rain had been predicted for Saturday and the HMO Customer Racing Team were well prepared when the heavens finally opened prior to the race. It was to be the first time that the Australian series ran on the Michelin wet weather tyre under race conditions and both drivers were up for the task. Morcom had moved steadily through the field and sat just behind the leaders until an intermittent electrical issue halted his progress. Buchan was also on the pace only to be caught
out twice by two large puddles that had grown on the apex and exit of Stoner Corner. Buchan recovered to finish 7th, while Morcom was classified 19th.
Blue skies returned on Sunday and Nathan Morcom was on a charge. The #11 DPO entry gained 9 places in race 2 to claim a top 10 result, while Josh Buchan was an innocent victim of another driver’s misfortune. The incident left the #30 Power Crank sponsored Hyundai i30N TCR with a shredded left front tyre and a slow trip back to the pitlane.
Morcom once again moved towards the leaders in the final race of the weekend, with Josh Buchan close behind for much of the race. The Hyundai 130N TCRs strengths came to the fore during the final stages of the race as Morcom catapulted from 7th to 4th by the penultimate lap. A late braking pass on the approach to the Honda Hairpin gave Morcom a well deserved 3rd place at the chequered flag.
Nathan Morcom (Car #11)
“The weekend proved that we can be a force in the 2021 Supercheap Auto TCR Australia Series. Practice and qualifying showed promise and the car had great grip on the Michelin wet weather tyres. It was the first time we raced with a wet weather set-up and the HMO Customer Racing Team nailed it. I was up to 5th when an intermittent electrical problem slowed us and there was nothing that could be done to rectify it in the pits. Our car has always shown great race pace and that was evident in races 2 and 3, especially from mid race. So it was shoulders out and lots of fun on Sunday. I should have got through sooner, but the level of competition has really stepped up in 2021.”
Josh Buchan (Car #30)
“It was really a weekend that got away. We had great race pace but unfortunately the weather during race 1 and a post race penalty set the tone for my weekend. There were two large puddles at Stoner Corner in that opening race. When you followed another car through it wasn’t that bad, but when you had a gap to the car ahead the puddle was that much deeper and I simply aquaplaned towards the edge of the circuit. I was then caught up in someone else’s accident at the
start of race 2 which left me with a shredded left front tyre and a last row start for the third and final race of the weekend. I moved up to 14th pretty quickly and followed the pack with Nathan just a few spots ahead. I had loads of speed but just lacked a little on the straight.”
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