Bailey Sweeny romps to maiden win in Bathurst race two

HMO Customer Racing’s Bailey Sweeny romped to a first-ever win in the second TCR Australia race at Bathurst, having passed pole-sitter Michael Caruso for the lead on the second lap of the race.

Caruso found himself on the reverse grid pole after finishing tenth in race one, and the Ashley Seward Motorsport driver held out on the first lap, despite banging wheels with Sweeny at the first corner.

However, on the run to The Chase on lap two, HMO Customer Racing’s Sweeny charged down the inside of Caruso’s Alfa Romeo for the lead, and he never looked back thereafter.

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In the end, 19-year-old Sweeny would win by a comfortable 11.4 seconds, making it the second biggest winning margin in the series’ short history.

GRM’s James Moffat claimed second, equalling his best-ever result in series, the Renault driver having hauled himself from sixth on the grid to third on the opening lap, before then passing Caruso for second at The Chase on lap four.

Caruso looked set to hold the final podium place, but on the last lap HMO’s Josh Buchan stole third going down the mountain, leaving Caruso to take the chequered flag in fourth.

Dylan O’Keeffe was the leading Peugeot driver in fifth, having run in fourth earlier in the race until Buchan’s Hyundai came alive later in the race and demoted him a place.

Tony D’Alberto looked lively early in the race, running in fourth, until he lost two places in the middle of the race and ended up in sixth. Nonetheless, the Wall Racing driver continues to lead the championship standings with an advantage of 40 points over O’Keeffe, despite still having never won a race in the series.

Ben Bargwanna got the better of Peugeot rival Aaron Cameron for seventh on lap eight, as Cameron found himself being muscled out several times in the race.

Brad Shiels claimed eighth from Cameron at the start of lap nine, leaving race one winner Cameron to finish in ninth. Earlier in the race, Cameron had been muscled off track at the final corner by fellow Peugeot racer Jordan Cox whilst running in seventh, although Cox would later lose several places and finish behind Cameron anyway.

Melbourne Performance Centre’s Will Brown completed the top ten, the 2019 champion having dropped from seventh on the grid on the opening lap.

Cox ultimately took the finish in 11th, although the GRM Peugeot driver had impressively climbed from the back of the grid up to that position on the opening lap. He then made further inroads up to a high of eighth on lap four, before dropping five places the next time around and having to recover lost ground.

Wall Racing’s Tim Slade was the only retirement of the race, having found he had no brakes in his Honda on the opening lap.

Race three is scheduled to get underway at 10:10 local time on Sunday (01:10 BST, 02:10 CEST).

Race results

1 130 Bailey SWEENY HMO Customer Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 10 22:36.4454 2:13.947 2
2 34 James MOFFAT LCMT+ Racing GRM Renault Mégane RS TCR 10 11.4742 2:15.141 6
3 30 Josh BUCHAN HMO Customer Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 10 11.8067 2:14.727 3
4 10 Michael CARUSO Ashley Seward Motorsport Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR 10 12.7790 2:15.178 1
5 8 Dylan O’KEEFFE Schaeffler GRM Peugeot 308 TCR 10 13.2997 2:14.979 8
6 50 Tony D’ALBERTO Honda Wall Racing Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 10 14.0406 2:14.885 4
7 71 Ben BARGWANNA Burson Auto Parts Racing Peugeot 308 TCR 10 14.7028 2:14.655 9
8 333 Brad SHIELS Royal Purple Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 10 16.7201 2:15.267 11
9 18 Aaron CAMERON Team Valvoline GRM Peugeot 308 TCR 10 17.2260 2:15.121 10
10 999 Will BROWN MPC Team Liqui Moly Audi RS3 LMS TCR 10 17.8985 2:15.118 7
11 33 Jordan COX Swyftx GRM Peugeot 308 TCR 10 18.1890 2:14.994 21
12 2 Luke KING MOUTAI / Zip Pay Hyundai i30 N TCR 10 18.9966 2:15.540 16
13 110 Zac SOUTAR Team Soutar Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 10 19.5623 2:15.472 13
14 15 Michael CLEMENTE Michael Clemente Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 10 20.3227 2:15.542 15
15 9 Jay HANSON AWC MPC Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR 10 20.5670 2:15.606 14
16 41 Kody GARLAND Valvoline Racing GRM Renault Mégane RS TCR 10 21.8605 2:15.566 17
17 14 Lachlan MINEEFF Purple Sector Volkswagen Golf GTi TCR 10 22.2721 2:15.232 18
18 89 Braydan WILLMINGTON Braydan Willmington Motorsport Alfa Romeo Giulietta TCR 10 31.5875 2:16.257 19
19 22 Iain MCDOUGALL Melbourne Performance Centre Audi RS3 LMS TCR 10 55.9080 2:17.840 20
20 11 Nathan MORCOM HMO Customer Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR 10 59.6610 2:16.945 12
R 24 Tim SLADE Stan Sport Wall Racing Honda Civic Type-R FK8 TCR 1 DNF N/A 5
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