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Bright scores landmark first TCR Australia victory  

Tom Howard

Saturday 18th May, 2019 - 2:56pm

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Jason Bright

Jason Bright has made history by taking out the inaugural TCR Australia race with a commanding drive at Sydney Motorsport Park.

The former Supercars star jumped pole-sitter Tony D’Alberto at the start before going on to lead every lap of the series’ opening 30 minute race. 

Bright, who started from the front row, edged away from the field in the early stages building a second lead over D’Alberto’s Honda Civic Type R.

He remained largely unchallenged for the remainder of the race taking the chequered flag by 2.1s.

The closest battle of the race was for second and third between D’Alberto and the HMO Customer Racing Hyundai of Will Brown.

Brown applied severe pressure on D’Alberto for the entire race but was unable to launch a serious attempt to pass.

In the end, D’Alberto held firm to finish second while Brown completed the podium.

The duo were closely followed by Dylan O’Keefe (Alfa Romeo) who settled for fourth at the flag.

Friday’s pacesetter Michael Almond was involved in an intense battle for fifth in the early laps before diving into the pits with damage to the front of his Hyundai.

This handed Nathan Morcom the position but he was under pressure from the Rik Breukers (Audi).

The Dutchman managed to pass the former Super2 racer in the closing stages to take fifth while Morcom dropped to eighth. 

The top 10 was completed by John Martin (Honda), Aaron Cameron (Volkswagen), Chris Pither (Renault) and Kelly Racing’s Andre Heimgartner.  

Team-mate Alex Rullo just missed out on the top 10 in 11th ahead of Chelsea Angelo (Holden/Opel), Alexandra Whitley (Volkswagen) and rally star Molly Taylor (Subaru).   

It proved to be a nightmare day for James Moffat who failed to make the start when his Garry Rogers Motorsport Renault suffered an oil leak on the way to the grid.

Issues for Jimmy Vernon (Alfa Romeo) and Almond saw the pair classified in 15th and 16th spots. 

TCR Australia returns to the track on Sunday for two more 30 minute races. 

Results: TCR Australia Race 1, Sydney Motorsport Park

1     8  Taskforce / Alliance Autosport  Jason Bright (VIC)     Volkswagen Golf GTI  16  26:07.0349
2    50  Wall Racing                     Tony D’Alberto (VIC)   Honda Civic Type R   16  26:09.2127
3    30  HMO Customer Racing             Will Brown (QLD)       Hyundai I30N         16  26:10.3932
4     9  Ashley Seward Motorsport        Dylan O’Keeffe (VIC)   Alfa Romeo Giulietta 16  26:10.6348
5    22  TCR SPA 500 / Melbourne Performance   Rik Breukers (NED)     Audi RS 3            16  26:15.2661
6    24  Wall Racing                     John Martin (NSW)      Honda Civic Type R   16  26:15.8799
7     2  Melbourne Performance           Aaron Cameron (VIC)    Volkswagen Golf GTI  16  26:16.9672
8    11  HMO Customer Racing             Nathan Morcom (NSW)    Hyundai I30N         16  26:16.9882
9    33  Garry Rogers Motorsport         Chris Pither (NZ)      Renault Magane RS    16  26:20.6980
10  777  Kelly Racing                    Andre Heimgartner (NZ) Subaru WRX STI       16  26:26.8765
11   62  Kelly Racing                    Alex Rullo (WA)        Holden Astra         16  26:31.3827
12   37  Kelly Racing                    Chelsea Angelo (VIC)   Holden Astra         16  26:42.1213
13   35  Alliance Autosport             Alexandra Whitley (QLD) Volkswagen Golf GTI   16   26:44.9872 
14    6  Kelly Racing                    Molly Taylor (NSW)     Subaru WRX STI       16  26:55.6392
15   29  Astron Tech / Garth Walden Racing  Michael Almond (SA)    Hyundai I30N         16  26:58.9005
16    7  Garry Rogers Motorsport         Jimmy Vernon (NSW)     Alfa Romeo Giulietta 14  26:45.4534
DNF  34  Garry Rogers Motorsport         James Moffat (VIC)     Renault Magane RS   

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