Dylan O’Keeffe scored a comfortable victory after coming through an incident-filled TCR Australia Race 2 that saw Garth and Leanne Tander clash at Phillip Island.
Saturday’s winner was once again in a class of his own taking the win by 6.2s in his Alfa Romeo from HMO Customer Racing’s Will Brown.
O’Keeffe briefly lost the lead to a stunning move by Brown on Lap 2 but a mistake later in the lap saw the lead change hands.
Once in front, O’Keeffe powered on to victory from Brown with Hamish Ribarits (Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi) completing the podium.
The race opened with a wild opening lap featuring two high profile incidents as polesitter O’Keeffe (ASM, Alfa Romeo) led Brown (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai) into Turn 1.
However, it all kicked off behind as Moffat, who started third ran wide at Turn 1 which sent his Garry Rogers Motorsport Renault spinning across the track.
Andre Heimgartner attempted to avoid the car but was hit by Garth Tander (Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi) in the rear, which sent the Kiwi off the road and out of the race.
The action continued at Turn 4 as the damaged Audi of Garth Tander was then involved in a three car incident.
Tander and Aaron Cameron (Melbourne Performance Centre, Volkswagen) made contact which then fired Tander’s Audi into the sister car driven by his wife Leanne Tander.
The two Audis returned to the pits with Leanne able to rejoin while Garth was forced into retirement. Cameron was able to rejoin at the back of the pack.
Racing continued without stoppage and the focus switched to battle for the lead.
Brown pulled off an impressive move to grab the lead from O’Keeffe at Turn 1 on Lap 2 but his advantage was short-lived.
The Hyundai driver ran wide at Turn 4 allowing O’Keeffe back into the lead.
Ribarits was the big winner of the opening lap chaos involving his Melbourne Performance Centre team-mates to claim third after passing Tony D’Alberto (Wall Racing, Honda).
The race settled down on Lap 3 with O’Keeffe edging away from Brown at the front.
D’Alberto continued fade as the race went on before suffering a right front puncture while occupying seventh fired him off the road at Turn 2.
His Honda team-mate inherited fourth but he too was forced back to the pits with five laps remaining with a right front puncture, which the team believed was down to debris on the circuit.
Chris Pither (Garry Rogers Motorsport, Renault) took over fourth but he soon came under pressure from Nathan Morcom (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai).
Morcom’s pace proved too much for Pither who surrendered fourth to the former Super2 driver.
Kelly Racing’s Alex Rullo ran strongly to come home in fifth after passing Pither late on the race.
Cameron recovered from the opening lap incident to finish seventh ahead of Jimmy Vernon (Garry Rogers Motorsport, Alfa Romeo).
After earlier contact between the pair, Alexandra Whitley (Alliance Autosport, Volkswagen) passed Moffat on the final lap to take ninth.
Rally ace Molly Taylor scored her best finish of the season to date in 11th, while Race 1 winner at Sydney Motorsport Park, Jason Bright, retired with a mechanical issue.
TCR Australia Race 3 is scheduled to start at 1420 AEST.
Results: TCR Australia Race 2, Phillip Island
|1||9 Ashley Seward Motorsport||Dylan O’Keeffe (Vic)||Alfa Romeo Giulietta||16||26:21.9600|
|2||30 HMO Customer Racing||William Brown (Qld)||Hyundai i30N||16||26:28.2019|
|3||22 Melbourne Performance Centre||Hamish Ribarits (Vic)||Audi RS 3||16||26:29.0718|
|4||11 HMO Customer Racing||Nathan Morcom (NSW)||Hyundai i30N||16||26:42.7799|
|5||62 Kelly Racing||Alex Rullo (WA)||Holden Astra||16||26:43.2560|
|6||33 Garry Rogers Motorsport||Chris Pither (NZ)||Renault Megane RS||16||26:43.8927|
|7||2 Melbourne Performance Centre||Aaron Cameron (Vic)||Volkswagen Golf GTI||16||26:44.8970|
|8||7 Garry Rogers Motorsport||Jimmy Vernon (NSW)||Alfa Romeo Giulietta||16||26:52.3155|
|9||35 Alliance Autosport||Alexandra Whitley (Qld)||Volkswagon Golf GTI||16||27:15.9545|
|10||34 Garry Rogers Motorsport||James Moffat (Vic)||Renault Megane RS||16||27:16.1621|
|11||6 Kelly Racing||Molly Taylor (NSW)||Subaru WRX STi||16||27:16.3143|
|12||37 Kelly Racing||Chelsea Angelo (Vic)||Holden Astra||16||28:07.0166|
|13||3 Melbourne Performance Centre||Leanne Tander (Vic)||Audi RS 3||15||27:43.5161|
|14||24 Wall Racing||John Martin (NSW)||Honda Civic Type R||14||26:54.9634|
|15||50 Wall Racing||Tony D’Alberto (Vic)||Honda Civic Type R||13||27:45.3887|
|DNF||777 Kelly Racing||Andre Heimgartner (NZ)||Subaru WRX STi||1||2:15.0301|
|DNF||4 Melbourne Performance Centre||Garth Tander (Vic)||Audi RS 3|
|DNF||8 Taskforce / Alliance Autosport||Jason Bright (Vic)||Volkswagon Golf GTI|