AARON LOVE’S domination of the opening round of the 2022 Porsche Paynter Dixon Carrera Cup Australia has continued with a lights-to-flag win at Albert Park, his third straight victory for the event.
In a one-off appearance before taking off to Europe, Love claimed the TAG Heuer Pole Position award on Thursday, before being leading home yesterday’s opening two races, with today’s success seeing the West Australian have to hold off the advances of multiple challengers.
Meanwhile, in Morris Finance Pro-Am, Geoff Emery repeated his opening race class win, with his chief rival Liam Talbot retiring mid-race.
Love led the field away yet again, with Harri Jones completing an audacious move on the grass into turn one, claiming second place from fourth on the grid.
Behind the leaders, the opening corner squeeze caused chaos.
Contact between Duvashen Padayachee, Jackson Walls, and Angelo Mouzouris saw Mouzouris spin into the gravel, with Padayachee limping to a halt, while Walls parked at turn three.
Following a safety car appearance, the race restarted on lap four, although Marc Cini fell by the wayside at turn 10, and race two’s leading Morris Finance Pro-Am runner Talbot retired in the pit lane.
Max Vidau forged his way back into second, passing Jones at turn 11 on the sixth circuit, with Jones quickly falling into the clutches of David Wall and Ryan Suhle.
At the end of eight circuits, Love held on to the lead in the time certain finish, with Vidau closing to within half a second at the chequered flag.
Jones claimed third, fending off the advances of Wall, with only 0.2s separating the duo, with Suhle in fifth, then Christian Pancione, Dylan O’Keeffe, Luke Youlden, Simon Fallon and David Russell rounding out the top-ten.
It was a particularly strong drive by Youlden, who charged through from 24th at the start.
Emery claimed his second Morris Finance Pro-Am race win for the event, with second-placed Sam Shahin less than half a second adrift at the finish.
Third in class went to Stephen Grove, ahead of Dean Cook and Tim Miles.
In the progressive points for the weekend, Love leads the way from Vidau, Wall, Jones and Suhle.
The fourth and final race for the opening round of the 2022 Porsche Paynter Dixon Carrera Cup Australia season is scheduled for 11:05am tomorrow, with the coverage available live through Channel 10, Fox Sports 506 and Kayo Sports.
Aaron Love – Winner Pro Class
“I have had a bit of practice with these restarts, but it’s all about trying to keep my head down and stay nice and calm, it’s really nice to come away with the three wins from the past races,” Love said.
“Hopefully, we can tune the car up a little bit for tomorrow, we’ve got our work cut out for us, Max is really quick we’ll have to do a bit of research overnight and get stuck into it for tomorrow’s race.
“The 992 is what I’ll be campaigning in France this year and it’s definitely helped being back with the Sonic guys, it feels like home, it’s definitely going to give me a leg up going into the French Carrera Cup Championship, ease myself into it this weekend and go full-on next weekend.”
Geoff Emery – Winner, Morris Finance Pro-Am
“It was a great race, but I got a bit baulked at the start with the Pros, but once we got through all that stuff it was a really good race,” Emery said.
“I had Liam come back from a bit, then Shahin, but it was a good battle.
“I’m loving the new car, it really suits my driving style, I’m excited for what the year has in store for us.
“It’s certainly got that GT type feel to it, which I’m really enjoying.”
Full results: https://www.carreracup.com.au/results/