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Wall Racing assessing damaged Martin Honda

Tom Howard

Monday 10th June, 2019 - 3:35pm

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John Martin slams into the side of Dylan O’Keeffe at the start of Race 3 at Phillip Island

Wall Racing will assess John Martin’s damaged Honda this week to see if one of its new Civics will be required for next month’s TCR Australia round at The Bend.

Martin was involved in a multiple car crash on the opening lap of Race 3 at Phillip Island which resulted in heavy damage to the rear of the #24 Civic Type R.

Both Wall Racing Hondas were involved in the incident that was initially triggered when pole-sitter Dylan O’Keeffe lost control of his Alfa Romeo at Turn 1.

Behind, Tony D’Alberto in the sister Civic was nudged which resulted in him running wide.

On the outside was Martin, who was tipped into a spin that saw him back into the passenger side of O’Keeffe’s car at speed causing significant damage to both vehicles.

While the drivers emerged unscathed, Wall Racing will now strip the car down this week to assess the damage.

Team boss David Wall admitted that the team may be forced to replace Martin’s car with one of two new Civics ordered earlier this month.

“Potentially,” Wall told Speedcafe.com when asked if Martin may receive one of the new cars.

“We have still got to assess the car and strip down and get it to the panel shop and see where we are at.

“To be fair, we are still assessing John’s car and there is a bit (of damage) there.

“Everyone is racing hard and trying to get what they can early on.

“It looks like from the vision Tony was unloaded through Turn 1 and became a passenger, and it was unfortunate there was an incident up the road and the boys had nowhere to go, and John has ended up backwards into O’Keeffe.

“Unfortunately there are a few cars that are going home with a bit of damage to fix, which is part of touring car racing, but it is probably a little far from what we all want.

“I’m sure everyone is happy to fix a few panels here and there but potentially putting rails in cars is a bit too much.”

Opening lap crashes proved a talking point at Phillip Island with the incidents attributed to drivers being unable to generate heat in the rear tyres of the front wheel drive touring cars in the early laps.

The crash in Race 3 topped a disappointing Sunday for Wall Racing as both Martin and D’Alberto sustained right front punctures during Race 2, leaving the pair in 14th and 15th positions.

On Saturday, D’Alberto brought his car home in fourth while Martin was caught up in an opening lap skirmish that saw him finish in 13th spot.

TCR Australia will head to The Bend Motorsport Park for Round 3 from July 12-14.

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