Nathan Morcom has hit out at TCR Australia stewards after copping three post-race penalties for contact with rivals during Race 3 at Sydney Motorsport Park.
The HMO Customer Racing driver was issued with time penalties totalling 60 seconds for contact with Jason Bright (Alliance Autosport Volkswagen (15 seconds), Tony D’Alberto (Wall Racing Honda) (15 seconds), while the most serious incident involved John Martin (Wall Racing Honda) and resulted in a 30s penalty.
Morcom made contact with Bright when trying to pass at Turn 1, he then hit D’Alberto at the Turn 15 hairpin while fighting over fifth.
However, the final clash with Martin saw the Honda driver fire off the road and into the barriers at Turn 17 when the pair were battling with Michael Almond over fourth spot.
Morcom took the blame for the Martin clash which resulted in an apology but slammed the penalty decisions for incidents with Bright and D’Alberto.
The Hyundai driver believes that the penalties were not consistent with the ‘bumping and grinding’ racing seen in other TCR championships.
“There was a bit of contact. I went up to speak to Tony and John already to apologise to them for some racing incidents,” said Morcom, who had finished fourth on the road prior to the post-race penalties.
“John admitted that he didn’t see me come across and it was just one of those things as a racing incident.
“I just got a whole heap of penalties from (TCR Australia) for a few different incidents. TCR is all about bumping, grinding and racing and at the moment it looks like there is not bumping and grinding and racing, like the World TCR series.
“It is disappointing because everyone knows TCR is known for bumping and grinding and racing.
“I will take the John Martin one that was too much, but it was racing incident with the Jason Bright pass – I just got up the inside of him and he got out on the marbles and lost pace.
“That is racing and passing and now I get penalty for that, so I don’t understand that.”
Meanwhile, Martin was left frustrated not to claim the points for what would have been a strong fourth but accepted the apology.
“I made a mistake into Turn 4 and that allowed (Almond) to get onto us,” sad Martin.
“He got me out of Turn 8; the Hyundais are so strong in the mid-range, so he was able to drive alongside me. I hung on the outside a little bit, but he was definitely in front, so I was trying to blend (behind) him.
“And all of a sudden I was in the fence.
“It is what it is. (Morcom) came over and said sorry, but it doesn’t fix the car or give us any points.
“I appreciate him coming down, but it doesn’t make any difference at the end of the day.”