Wow, what a weekend! An action-packed event was always going to be on the cards – but when you get heavy rain on the streets of the gold coast, things only get more exciting!
Visiting what is essentially my home track (being based on the gold coast) I hadn’t sampled the track in anything other than my daily road car when they were setting the track up last week…
Friday was super busy, we had 2 x 30-minute practice followed by our 20-minute qualifying session. Adding to the list of things to do, I was invited along to the Black & White Porsche lunch at the QT hotel as a guest speaker.
I spent most of the two practice sessions circulating lap after lap slowly coming to grips with the unforgiving street circuit. Certainly, the most daunting I have driven, as there is next to no room for error. Strong results in practice gave me the confidence to push that little bit harder in Qualifying.
Expecting the track conditions to improve from practice two, the session took a little longer than normal to show the true speed of everyone. Again, I was able to set the benchmark early on only to be knocked off the top spot by both sonic cars in the dying minutes of the session.
Overnight, the weather took a turn for the worse, with heavy rain forecasted – it certainly did and didn’t stop until later Saturday afternoon.
Starting behind the safety car for race 1, we had a couple of laps to identify the standing water and track conditions. The race went green on lap 3 and I was able to make a move for second straight away.
I kept my eyes forward and refocused on chasing down the leader. After a few laps, I was able to get alongside Andre and make the move and went about my business. The setup changes Leigh and the boys dialled in pre-race, allowed me to drive off to the biggest winning margin in Carrera Cup on the Gold Coast ever!
Race two on Sunday morning, saw us starting from pole position. Unfortunately, a slow get away dropped me in behind Andre. I was able to apply pressure early – although faded before the finish – settling for second.
Race three saw us on the front row once again, however – this time I was able to capitalise on a great launch and lead the field into turn one. From there, I kept my cool and brought home my fifth race with for the year – and my second-round win!
It was a great weekend and the perfect way to top off a very big learning year in the championship. The results elevated us to fifth in the championship on debut and equal number of most race & round wins for the year. None of this is possible without my loyal and great group of sponsors, McElrea Racing and my Family!