Round 6. Phillip Island – Race 1

Round 6. Phillip Island – Race 1

The start for the first race commenced just after lunchtime on Saturday, and it was an even start off the line as Cameron Beller and Chris Lewis-Williams were side by side through turn one and two, with Beller able to prevail and take the lead exiting Southern Loop, with Vince Misuraca following close behind. Michael Westaway lost a few spots on the run to turn one with Brad Winter and Tony Westaway moving past and then Robert Lange scooting through on the inside with a fantastic start through turn 1, leaving Michael in 7th ahead of Mark Taubitz, with John Goddard and Ken Rowland rounding out the top 10. In 11th was Andrew Jackman, ahead of Keith Marriner and Ben Raphael.

Missing the start and dropping to the back of the pack was Dick Howe, meanwhile Pedr James was unable to make the start of the race after damaging his gearbox in the sports car qualifying session that was run following the 944 qualifying session. His crew got close, but couldn’t get the replacement gearbox back in in time for the race start.

Coming into Honda corner for the first time and there was a big moment for Tony Westaway, locking up the brakes and looping the Westbon Management 944 down the inside of the track, fortunately not coming into contact with any other cars, although this dropped him back to 14th and last position.

Howe had moved his way past Raphael, and then moved alongside Marriner coming out of Siberia corner. Unfortunately for Howe, he was unsighted by Marriner and a small touch between the two sent the #8 MPC Porsche off the track, and on the damp grass Dick was unable to regain control on the short trip to the tyre wall, the resultant contact would bring out the safety car as the field returned to this section of the track on lap 2.

The order was Beller, Lewis-Wililams, Misuraca, Winter, Lange, Michael Westaway, Goddard (after passing Taubitz into Turn 1) Taubitz, Rowland, Jackman, Marriner, Raphael and Tony Westaway.

A couple of laps were completed under safety car before the yellow flags were replaced with Red, as the race was called off as a result of the damage and recovery time required to repair the damaged tyre wall on the entrance to Hayshed corner.

The teams packed up for the day and returned for some social activities and trophy presentations for the previous round in preparation for the two races on Sunday, with the points position remaining the same as they were coming into the day, with now only 2 races for Beller to close the points gap to Misuraca.

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