Race 1 kicked off today at 12:25pm. After a disastrous Race 1 in 2015, when the Aston Martin the duo were racing blew the gearbox, they were both ready to have a much better result.
Andrew started the race & after a couple of laps he’d moved up to 10th position. The key for Andrew was stay as close to the front runners as possible. Dean & Andrew had at least a 10 second gain in pitstop penalties than the front runners so they had a great chance of jumping cars in their pit stop.
A safety car aided them as well as it bunched the field back up just before the pit window opened.
The team completed their 85 second compulsory pit stop & Dean was left to finish the race. Unfortunately, not long after Dean left pit lane, the Lamborghini Gallardo started to misfire giving Dean a bit of grief.
Dean: “I was getting really frustrated with the car. Exiting the corners, the engine just kept dying & lost all power. I kept having to hit the reset button but it was costing me a lot of time & track positions. It also happened on a few spots that weren’t ideal & I was lucky I didn’t get cleaned up.”
Dean still managed to make up some track positions & combined with their gain in the pitstop, Dean got up to 8th & was closing in on the Tekno #61 entry. On the 2nd last lap, the car misfired on the exit of Turn 11 & he lost two spots. Another misfire on the last lap caused him to lose another place & they eventually finished in 11th.
Dean: “I was pretty tense when I got out of the car. The continual issue with the car cost us so much. I probably would’ve been able to make up a couple more spots & maybe finished in the Top 5 but in the end it didn’t matter anyway because of the penalty”.
Shortly after the race, the officials did their routine weighing of the car. The team were used to other race categories where the car is weighed with the driver still in the vehicle & were unaware this wasn’t the case in the GT series. As a result the car was 20kg underweight & the team were excluded from Race 1.
Dean: “We’ll have to start from the back of the field which should make for some interesting racing. The Lambo has incredible straight line speed though so I’ll hopefully be able to make quite a few spots up before I hand the car over to Andrew.”
Race 2 of the Australian GT series is on Saturday morning at 9:40am.