Ryan Millier held off a hard charging Nathan Antunes to secure victory in a Safety Car interrupted Australian GT Championship opener at Sydney Motorsport Park.
Millier, sharing the #74 Jamec Pem Audi R8 with Chris Mies, were involved in a race long tussle for victory with the pole sitting Steve Owen/Kevin Weeks Ford GT, which led every lap before the Safety Car was deployed.
A high speed crash for Maranello Motorsport’s Andrew Jones at Turn 1, who luckily walked away from the incident, forced a lengthy delay as marshals repaired the barriers.
The field elected to take their compulsory stops under the Safety Car before racing resumed with just five minutes remaining.
Millier and Antunes’ Audi R8s quickly found a way by Weeks on the restart to produce a thrilling dice for the victory.
Despite a couple of pressure filled final laps, Millier held firm to take the win by 0.3s from Antunes’ Skwirk Audi R8.
Graeme Smyth managed to guide the Trass Family Motorsport Ferrari 458, he shares with Jono Lester, home in third.
However, the race finished in dramatic circumstances for Weeks as he suffered a huge crash at Turn 8 of the final lap, which saw the Ford GT sustain heavy damage.
Morgan Haber brought his Erebus Mercedes SLS home in fourth ahead of the #88 Maranello Motorsport Ferrari 458 of Grant Denyer.
Klark Quinn secured sixth in his Darrell Lea backed McLaren 650S in front of the second Erebus Mercedes SLS of Max Twigg and Geoff Emery.
The Reiter Camaro driven by Jack Le Brocq and Nathan Morcom finished eighth, while James Koundouris (Porsche) and Tony Walls (McLaren) rounded out the top 10.
Matt Campbell and Justin McMillan were involved in one of the race’s other moments when the pair collided fighting for position on the entry to Turn 1 in the early laps.
McMillan’s Lamborghini was pitched into a spin which saw his race end on the spot, while Campbell brought the damaged Ginetta G55 back to the pits to retire after 13 laps.
A second 60 minute Australian GT race is scheduled for Sunday beginning at 0920 local time.
Result: Australian GT Championship Race 1, Sydney Motorsport Park
|1||JAMEC PEM Racing||C.Mies/R.Millier||Audi R8 Ultra||31||59:47.7548|
|2||Skwirk / Beechwood Homes||Nathan Antunes (NSW)||Audi R8 Ultra||31||59:48.0582|
|3||Trass Family Motorsport||J.Lester/G.Smyth||Ferrari 458 GT3||31||59:51.8882|
|4||Erebus Motorsport||Morgan Haber||Mercedes Benz AMG SL||31||59:52.2876|
|5||Maranello Motorsport||Grant Denyer (NSW)||Ferrari 458 GT3 2014||31||59:55.0369|
|6||Darrell Lea||Klark Quinn (QLD)||McLaren 650S GT3||31||59:56.1989|
|7||Erebus Motorsport||M.Twigg/G.Emery||Mercedes Benz AMG SL||31||59:58.0250|
|8||Interlloy M Motorsport||J.LeBrocq/N.Morcom||Reiter Camaro GT3||31||01:00:01.5197|
|9||Supabarn Supermarkets||James Koundouris (ACT)||Porsche 997 GT3-R||31||01:00:03.6207|
|10||Objective Racing||Tony Walls (QLD)||McLaren 650S GT3||31||01:00:04.3399|
|11||Darrell Lea||Anthony Quinn (QLD)||McLaren 650S GT3||31||01:00:05.6904|
|12||Scott Taylor Motorsport||S.Taylor/A.Seton||Porsche 997 GT3-R||31||01:00:07.9732|
|13||Supabarn Supermarkets||Theo Koundouris (ACT)||Porsche 996 GT3-S||31||01:00:11.4010|
|14||JAMEC PEM Racing||Steven McLaughlan (VIC)||Audi R8 Ultra||31||01:00:12.0546|
|15||Flying B Racing||P.Edwards/J.Bowe||Bentley Continental||31||01:00:17.2635|
|16||Fastway Couriers||S.Ellinghham/W.Luff||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||31||01:00:19.3392|
|17||AMAC Motorsport||A.Macpherson/B.Shiels||Porsche 997 GT3-R||30||59:49.8949|
|18||Adina Apartment Hotels||G.Taylor/B.Mawer||Audi R8 LMS||30||59:53.2115|
|19||Hogs Breath Caf||ark Griffith (QLD)||udi R8 LMS||30||1:00:07.0440|
|20||Thomson Geer Lawyers||Michael O’Donnell (SA)||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||30||01:00:32.5632|
|21||Miles Advisory||Tim Miles (NSW)||Aston Martin Vantage||30||01:00:48.4118|
|22||Rentcorp Forklifts||Indiran Padayachee||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||30||01:00:50.7970|
|23||Voight Contracting||S.Voight/A.Tebb||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||29||01:00:12.4362|
|24||Donut King||Tony Alford (QLD)||Lotus Exige Cup R||29||01:00:26.6739|
|DNF||Supaloc Racing||K.Weeks/S.Owen||Ford GT 2011 GT3||30||58:19.1087|
|DNF||Maranello Motorsport||Andrew Jones (NSW)||Ferrari 458 GT3||18||28:09.0126|
|DNF||Team FreeM||Sam Filmore (NZ)||Lamborghini Gallardo||17||26:48.8922|
|DNF||SAFE-T-STOP||Richard Gartner (NSW)||Porsche GT3 Cup Car||14||23:08.3557|
|DNF||HHH Racing/Triffid/ESP||Matt Campbell (QLD)||Ginetta G55 GT3||13||20:13.0490|
|DNF||Interlloy M Motorsport||Justin McMillan (VIC)||Lamborghini Gallardo||2||3:16.1541|
|DNF||Southern Star Developments||Rob Smith (VIC)||Audi R8 LMS||1||3:52.7505|