Dylan O’Keeffe scored his second TCR Australia win of the day at Queensland Raceway, leading every lap en route to his first race three victory of the season. The Ashley Seward Motorsport driver lead home Melbourne Performance Centre’s Russell Ingall by 1.2 seconds.
In completing a clean sweep of Sunday’s races the Alfa Romeo driver has dramatically reduced the points deficit to championship leader HMO Customer Racing’s Will Brown.
In the heavier car, O’Keeffe was able to hold onto his lead despite briefly going three wide with Ingall and a fast starting Wall Racing Honda Civic Type R of Tony D’Alberto into turn one.
Melbourne Performance Centre’s Aaron Cameron, who was looking to continue his forward charge from the first two races, was shuffled wide at turn five and dropped back to sixth place.
Behind, championship leader Brown initially made up three places on the opening lap from tenth on the grid, as Wall Racing’s John Martin slipped to ninth.
As in race two O’Keeffe was able to display unmatched pace on cold tyres, gapping the chasing pack to generate a two second lead by lap seven.
Martin then set about moving forward through the field, passing the Garry Rogers Motorsports duo of James Moffatt and Jordan Cox.
As the race reached halfway the fight for the victory was reignited as Ingall then began to decrease the three second gap to the leading Alfa Romeo, and by lap 16 was within 1.6 seconds of O’Keeffe.
Despite the best efforts of the 2005 V8 Supercars champion O’Keeffe did not succumb to pressure and held on to a 1.2 second lead at the flag, scoring his fourth win of the season and overturning his race three misfortunes.
Ingall completed a hat trick of podium finishes, as D’Alberto kept his championship hopes alive with his first podium in 10 races.
HMO Customer Racing’s Nathan Morcom overcame perpetual brake issues for the Hyundai i30N to finish fourth, and move up to the fourth spot in the championship standings.
Cameron was unable to fight back to the podium after the lap one run through the grass to cross the line fifth, just ahead of the second Wall Racing Honda Civic of John Martin.
Cox was forced to fight for his seventh placed finish in the closing stages as points leader Brown engaged in some physical racing to try and pass the Alfa Romeo, but it was to no avail.
Leanne Tander scored another strong result in the Melbourne Performance Centre Audi RS 3 to finish ninth, ahead of Team Tradie’s Jason Bright who rounded out the top ten.
21 year old Aaron Seton who stepped up to fill the vacated seat of Jean-Karl Vernay in the Melbourne Performance Centre Audi, finished in 11th after having only first lapped the Queensland Raceway circuit in TCR machinery in race two.
With his second win of the weekend O’Keefe has reduced the points deficit to Brown significantly, now only separated by 55 points.
|1||9||Dylan O’KEEFFE||Ashley Seward Motorsport||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||21||26:29.0232||1:15.017||1|
|2||100||Russell INGALL||Melbourne Performance||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||21||1.208||1:15.054||2|
|3||50||Tony D’ALBERTO||Wall Racing||Honda Civic Type R TCR||21||2.241||1:14.958||4|
|4||11||Nathan MORCOM||HMO Customer Racing||Hyundai i30 N TCR||21||2.776||1:14.918||6|
|5||16||Aaron CAMERON||Melbourne Performance||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||21||3.172||1:14.723||3|
|6||38||Jordan COX||Garry Rogers Motorsport||Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR||21||8.286||1:15.170||5|
|7||30||Will BROWN||HMO Customer Racing||Hyundai i30 N TCR||21||8.629||1:14.384||10|
|8||24||John MARTIN||Wall Racing||Honda Civic Type R TCR||21||8.717||1:14.423||7|
|9||3||Leanne TANDER||Melbourne Performance||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||21||11.208||1:15.189||9|
|10||8||Jason BRIGHT||Taskforce / Alliance Autosport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||21||16.393||1:15.302||13|
|11||4||Aaron SETON||Melbourne Performance||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||21||18.908||1:15.459||14|
|12||38||Jordan MICHELS||Wall Racing||Honda Civic Type R TCR||21||19.555||1:15.455||12|
|13||62||Alex RULLO||Kelly Racing||Holden Astra TCR||21||27.724||1:15.461||11|
|14||35||Alexandra WHITLEY||Alliance Autosport||Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR||21||33.186||1:15.772||17|
|15||34||James MOFFAT||Garry Rogers Motorsport||Renault Mégane RS TCR||20||+ 1 LAP||1:15.317||8|
|R||6||Molly TAYLOR||Kelly Racing||Subaru WRX STi||8||DNF||1:16.776||15|
|NS||33||Chris PITHER||Garry Rogers Motorsport||Renault Mégane RS TCR||–||DNS||N/A||16|
|NS||777||Andre HEIMGARTNER||Kelly Racing||Holden Astra TCR||–||DNS||N/A||–|
|NS||4||Jean-Karl VERNAY||Melbourne Performance||Audi RS3 LMS TCR||–||DNS||N/A||–|