TYREPOWER TASMANIA SUPERSPRINT 2018 – WRAP UP WITH BRIAN BOYD
- Symmons Plains, Tasmania.
Tassie rounds deliver exciting racing and good results for Team PAYCE
PAYCE Managing Director, Brian Boyd said the 2.4 kilometre Symmons Plains circuit once again provided lots of exciting and spectacular racing, some surprises and fortunately an absence of the massive crashes that caused mayhem last year.
"Team PAYCE had a strong weekend with the standout performances being Chris Pither, picking up three podiums from three races and his first win in Super2 and John Bowe holding onto his lead in the Paynter Dixon Touring Car Masters championship," Mr. Boyd said.
"It was also the first win for the Wilson Security Racing GRM team in a Super2 round, with hopefully many more to come.
"The weather was mainly cool, but some showers and drizzle over the weekend were enough the make things interesting and those teams who made the right calls with tyre and pit stop strategies found their decisions paid off," Brian Boyd reported.
V8 Supercars - Timesheets Show Teams are Close for 2018 – Brian Boyd
Brian said the third round of the season got off to an uneventful start for both Garth Tander and James Golding in the #33 and #34 Commodores.
"Friday's two practice sessions focussed on setups, but by Saturday, Garth and the GRM team were rewarded with a 7th best time in practice and then another top 10 time in qualifying for the 50-lap race later in the day," Mr. Boyd offered.
"James is still on a fast learning curve in the category and although on paper his times are respectable, more consistency will move him up the time sheets. This was also the first time he had raced at this track.
"The closeness of the times was borne out by the fact that there was less than half a second in qualifying between the field up to 21st position," Brian Boyd reflected.
Tyre Degradation Critical in Endurance Race – Brian Boyd
"The team decided to give Garth's car an engine change overnight to address some issues that could not be resolved and that was a wise move."
Brian said Saturday's race was hard fought throughout the field with tyre degradation playing a key role.
"Despite a number of incidents, the 120-kilometre race ran Safety Car-free which benefited some while others lost out hoping for an intervention," Mr. Boyd said.
"Both Wilson Security Racing GRM cars got away well and Garth gained a spot to 9th on the first lap. The two cars pitted early on lap 5 (James) and lap 7 (Garth) and worked hard to pick their way through the field. By lap 30, Garth was up to 12th and defended that position until near race end when he dropped back a spot to come home in 13th place."
Brian Boyd noted James made ground up to 18th position before slipping back to near the rear of the field.
"His best lap time of 51.8031 seconds was only a couple of tenths off the fastest lap for the race, but he was not able to clear the pack and make it past mid-field.
"After Saturday's race it was clear that tyres would play a critical role in Sunday's race.
Top 10 Finish for Garth Well Deserved – Brian Boyd
"Garth had a better grid position, having qualified at 9th and was able to manage his tyres well and with good work at the two mandatory pit stops was able to bring the #33 Commodore home for a comfortable top 10 finish in 7th place.
"James started at the rear of the grid and by race end had improved his position by eight spots to give him some satisfaction for the weekend, and lots to take away to digest before the next round," Brian Boyd finished.
The next round of Virgin Australia Supercars is at Phillip Island on 20-22 April, 2018.
Go Team PAYCE!