Robotham wins Super2 thriller after Everingham heartbreak

Jaylyn Robotham drives away from the field after taking the lead. Picture: Ross Gibb

Jaylyn Robotham has pinched a thrilling maiden Dunlop Super2 Series race win after Tyler Everingham was cruelled by a flat tyre in the Round 1 opener at Sydney Motorsport Park.

Image Racing’s Robotham was only fourth at the time of the second and final Safety Car restart in Race 1, at which point Everingham held the lead but had a deflating right-rear.

The MW Motorsport driver ran wide when he tipped the #27 Nissan Altima into Moffat Corner (Turn 1), incentivising Tickford Racing’s Zak Best to have a lunge when the field arrived at the braking zone at Bond Bend (Turn 2).

Best pinched a brake in the #78 FGX Falcon and he too ended up wide of the race line, causing pole-sitter Matt Payne to show the nose.

As Best tried to hold off the Grove Racing driver through Turns 3 and 4, Robotham decided to stick the #999 VF Commodore down the outside, and that turned into the race lead as they ran though Brock’s 05 onto Turn 6 on the far side of Corporate Hill.

Best locked up again at the Turn 8 hairpin as Robotham disappeared up the road, extending the gap to 1.9s at the end of the restart lap and going on to win by 3.3610s after just two laps more.

Best hung on for second while MWM debutant Thomas Maxwell (#3 Nissan Altima) was able to nick third position in the kerfuffle which unfolded on the restart lap.

Payne finished fourth in the #10 Nissan Altima, from Aaron Seton (#30 Matt Stone Racing VF Commodore), Declan Fraser (#777 Triple Eight Race Engineering VF Commodore), Cameron Hill (#111 Triple Eight VF Commodore), Zane Morse (#11 Brema Group VF Commodore), Cameron Crick (#38 Eggleston Motorsport VF Commodore), and Matt Chahda (#18 Matt Chahda Motorsport FGX Falcon).

Earlier in the day, Payne had taken a maiden Super2 pole position.

However, he was slow away, allowing Everingham to bolt from the outside of the front row and into a clear lead.

Best advanced to second spot from the inside of the second row, with Payne slotting into third and Robotham taking up fourth.

Chahda went down the inside of Maxwell at Turn 4 to move into fifth position, before a Safety Car was called due to an incident back at Turn 3.

Elly Morrow (#8 Brad Jones Racing VF Commodore) had become stuck on the grass after being turned around in contact with Angelo Mouzouris (#6 MWM Nissan Altima), who started last after failing to set a representative time in qualifying.

Stewards investigated the clash in-race and opted to take no further action, although the neutralisation did cost Everingham most of a margin which already stood at 1.9s.

The restart came on Lap 4 and Everingham took his time to accelerate, as is his right, but Chahda dropped back behind Maxwell and also Seton as the field fanned out.

Triple Eight team-mates Fraser and Hill were on the climb before the Safety Car was called again on Lap 6, due to Super3 competitor James Masterton (#219 Masterton Motorsports VE Commodore) spinning off at Moffat Corner and becoming stuck on the wet grass.

Again, Everingham lost a handy lead, at that point approaching a full second, while Best had managed to keep Payne behind him in the battle for second position.

It was during that Safety Car period that the issue with Car #27’s right-rear tyre came to light, but MWM and Everingham tried to persevere without a pit stop.

Unfortunately for the Dubbo driver, who had already missed Friday practice this weekend due to food poisoning, it became apparent he would not be able to cling on for a win when he struggled to make the turn at Moffat Corner upon the Lap 9 restart.

It did, however, set up a thrilling conclusion to the contest, from which Robotham emerged with his first race win in the series.

Among those outside the top 10 at the finish were Eggleston’s Matt McLean (#54 VF Commodore) in 12th position, having dropped from seventh on the grid to 17th after the start, and Mouzouris in 15th.

Super3 class honours went the way of Anderson Motorsport’s Brad Vaughan in 13th outright, one position ahead of Eggleston’s Kai Allen (#26 VE Commodore).

Qualifying for Race 2 takes place tomorrow from 09:05 local time/AEDT.

Results: Race 1

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver Car Cls Laps Race time
1 999 Erebus Academy / Image Racing Jaylyn Robotham Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:28.6834
2 78 Best Leisure Industries Zak Best Ford Falcon FG/X S2 11 22:32.0444
3 3 MWM Thomas Maxwell Nissan Altima S2 11 22:32.3801
4 10 Grove Racing Matthew Payne Nissan Altima S2 11 22:32.6222
5 30 Sherrin Rentals Aaron Seton Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:32.9315
6 777 Triple Eight Race Engineering Declan Fraser Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:33.1392
7 111 Triple Eight Race Engineering Cameron Hill Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:33.5637
8 11 Brema Group Racing Zane Morse Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:34.5372
9 38 Eggleston Motorsport Cameron Crick Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:36.4431
10 18 Cavalier Homes Matthew Chahda Ford Falcon FG/X S2 11 22:37.5708
11 58 EFS 4×4 Accessories Ryal Harris Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:39.0878
12 54 Eggleston Motorsport Matthew McLean Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:39.5115
13 5 Anderson Motorsport Brad Vaughan Ford Falcon FG CH 11 22:40.3167
14 26 Eggleston Motorsport Kai Allen Holden Commodore VE CH 11 22:40.6392
15 6 MWM Angelo Mouzouris Nissan Altima S2 11 22:40.8968
16 77 Mr HDT Race Cars Blake Fardell Holden Commodore VE2 CH 11 22:41.5181
17 23 RHM / Nulon Ray Hislop Ford Falcon BA SC3 11 22:41.9867
18 7 Mocomm Motorsport Comms Jim Pollicina Holden Commodore VE SC3 11 22:43.6388
19 49 Image Racing Jay Hanson Holden Commodore VF S2 11 22:46.3020
20 46 Turbo Brisbane Jarred Danaher Ford Falcon FG SC3 11 22:50.4616
21 76 Valmont Coatings Garry Hills Holden Commodore VE2 SC3 11 22:52.1992
22 4 Crusher Parts International Tony Auddino Ford Falcon BF SC3 11 22:55.3304
23 2 Page Bros Jayco Steven Page Holden Commodore VE2 SC3 11 22:55.6509
24 25 Weldcraft Motorsport Paul Boschert Holden Commodore VE SC3 11 22:56.8115
25 68 Turbo Brisbane Shane Beikoff Ford Falcon AU HC 11 23:01.7671
26 39 Vectra Corp Chris Smerdon Ford Falcon FG SC3 11 23:14.0660
27 27 Blue Ribbon Legal / MWM Tyler Everingham Nissan Altima S2 10 23:03.9338
28 8 Steeline Racing Elly Morrow Holden Commodore VF S2 10 23:07.3985
NC 67 Flash Bush Motorsports Nash Morris Ford Falcon FG/X S2 8 17:47.4334
NC 219 Masterton Motorsport James Masterton Holden Commodore VE SC3 5 10:37.6955
NC 35 Unit Racing Jason Gomersall Ford Falcon FG SC3 5 11:08.5721

Classes: S2 Super2, CH Super3 Championship, SC3 Super3 Cup, HC Super3 Heritage Class

Series points: Super2

Pos Driver Pts
1 Jaylyn Robotham 150
2 Zak Best 138
3 Thomas Maxwell 129
4 Matthew Payne 120
5 Aaron Seton 111
6 Declan Fraser 102
7 Cameron Hill 96
8 Zane Morse 90
9 Cameron Crick 84
10 Matthew Chahda 78
11 Ryal Harris 72
12 Matthew McLean 69
13 Angelo Mouzouris 66
14 Jay Hanson 63
15 Tyler Everingham 60
16 Elly Morrow 57
17 Nash Morris 0

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