This year is the 11th time the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia has been held since the first in 2003. No championship was held in 2009 and 2010.
It is the ninth time the category has competed in Adelaide and every time it has been the opening round of that year’s championship. PCCA didn’t compete in Adelaide in 2003 and 2011.
The 2015 season opener is the 83rd PCCA round held since the category began in 2003.
The races in Adelaide will be the 246th, 247th and 248th in PCCA history. The milestone 250th race should come in Race 2 in Round 2 at Albert Park.
Reigning PCCA Champion Steve Richards has been the runner-up in Adelaide the last two years but is yet to claim an Adelaide round victory. He has won a race in Adelaide but has never greeted the chequered flag first there given Craig Baird crossed the line first in Race 3 in 2013 only to receive a five second penalty for a start infringement, handing the win to Richards.
Richards is moving up the stats sheets in PCCA history books. His next podium finish will tie him with Fabian Coulthard and David Reynolds for fourth on the list of most podium finishes in PCCA history.
Such was the competitiveness of last year’s championship, just 40 points covered Richards, Craig Baird and Warren Luff at season’s end and Richards’ championship-winning points tally of 954 was the smallest ever scored by a PCCA driver to claim the title.
Five drivers will make their PCCA debut in the opening round of 2015 in Adelaide. Reigning Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Champion Fraser Ross, GT3 Cup round winner Matt Campbell, former Porsche Motorsport manager Cam McConville, recent Force India F1 test pilot Spike Goddard and reigning Australian Formula 3 Champion Simon Hodge. Last year in Adelaide there were seven PCCA rookies and in 2013 there were six, showing that there’s a steady flow of talent coming into the category in both Professional and Elite ranks.
The TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge title returns in 2015 for the winner of the Elite Class. It was first held in 2004 and has gone under a few different names over the years. However, the only former champion in the class in the 2015 field is the reigning champion – Stephen Grove.
He may have had a tough year in 2014, but Craig Baird is still the Porsche ‘King of Adelaide’. He’s won more rounds there than anyone else (four), had more podiums (five) and more race wins (eight). The Kiwi starts the year three poles behind record holder Alex Davison for the PCCA record of 15.
No currently active PCCA driver has taken multiple pole positions in Adelaide. There have been seven different pole sitters from the last seven rounds held there! Alex Davison is the only repeat pole sitter.
Five times has the Adelaide round winner gone on to claim that year’s championship. The drivers to achieve this were Alex Davison (2004), Fabian Coulthard (2005) and Craig Baird (2006, 2008, 2013).
Warren Luff achieved a rare piece of history last year by clean sweeping all three races in Adelaide. It was just the second time it’s happened in PCCA history at the circuit after Alex Davison did it in the inaugural round in 2004. There were three clean sweeps in last year’s PCCA – Luff in Adelaide, Baird at Sydney Motorsport Park and Michael Patrizi at Sandown (though one of the three races was deemed a ‘no race’).
The end of the 2014 series was amazing – six different drivers won the last seven races across the Sandown, Bathurst and Gold Coast rounds.
Adelaide was the site of the second biggest win in Porsche Carrera Cup Australia history in 2012 when Alex Davison beat Nick Foster by 12.0693s in Race 1.
At the time it was a record, though it was beaten later in the season by Jonny Reid’s 13.7760s win over Davison at Phillip Island in May.
The closest Porsche Carrera Cup Australia finish in Adelaide came in the first race held there in 2004 when Alex Davison held off Jim Richards to win by 0.2576s.
The smallest pole position margin for a Porsche Carrera Cup Australia round in Adelaide is 0.0090s between pole man Craig Baird and David Reynolds in 2007. It is the third closest in PCCA history.
The biggest pole margin for PCCA in Adelaide came in 2005 when Jim Richards was 0.2313s faster than Fabian Coulthard. It’s amazing to think that just over two-tenths of a second is the biggest PCCA polewinning margin in Adelaide.
ADELAIDE LAP RECORDS
Race Lap Record: Shae Davies, 1m22.2914s, 2014
Qual Lap Record: Shae Davies, 1m21.5255s, 2014
ADELAIDE ROUND WINNERS
2004 Alex Davison
2005 Fabian Coulthard
2006 Craig Baird
2007 Craig Baird
2008 Craig Baird
2012 Alex Davison
2013 Craig Baird
2014 Warren Luff
4 – Craig Baird
2 – Alex Davison
1 – Fabian Coulthard, Warren Luff
ADELAIDE POLE POSITIONS
2004 Alex Davison
2005 Jim Richards
2006 Alex Davison
2007 Craig Baird
2008 Bryce Washington
2012 Alex Davison
2013 Nick Percat
2014 Shae Davies
3 – Alex Davison
1 – Jim Richards, Craig Baird, Bryce Washington, Nick Percat, Shae Davies
ADELAIDE RACE WINS
2004 Alex Davison Alex Davison Alex Davison
2005 Fabian Coulthard Jim Richards Fabian Coulthard
2006 Alex Davison Craig Baird Craig Baird
2007 Craig Baird Alex Davison Craig Baird
2008 Dean Fiore Craig Baird David Russell
2012 Alex Davison Alex Davison Craig Baird
2013 Craig Baird Craig Baird Steve Richards
2014 Warren Luff Warren Luff Warren Luff
8 – Craig Baird
7 – Alex Davison
3 – Warren Luff
2 – Fabian Coulthard
1 – Jim Richards, Dean Fiore, David Russell, Steve Richards
2004 Alex Davison Jim Richards Fabian Coulthard
2005 Fabian Coulthard Jim Richards Luke Youlden
2006 Craig Baird Alex Davison David Reynolds
2007 Craig Baird Alex Davison David Reynolds
2008 Craig Baird David Russell Dean Fiore
2012 Alex Davison Craig Baird Daniel Gaunt
2013 Craig Baird Steve Richards Nick Percat
2014 Warren Luff Steve Richards Nick Foster
5 – Craig Baird
4 – Alex Davison
2 – Jim Richards, Fabian Coulthard, David Reynolds, Steve Richards
1 – Luke Youlden, David Russell, Dean Fiore, Daniel Gaunt, Nick Percat, Warren Luff, Nick Foster