Warren Luff has claimed a dramatic victory in the second Porsche Carrera Cup Australia race at Mount Panorama, while Shane Smollen continued his Elite Class stronghold.
Pole-sitter Steven Richards led from the start from Luff and David Russell, with the leading trio pulling away from the rest of the field.
Nick Foster and Michael Patrizi gained several positions to fight for fourth while a train of Shae Davies, Sam Power, Craig Baird, Michael Almond and Nick McBride closely followed.
Russell progressed past Luff on Lap 4 into second, which was followed by the top three drivers bunching together in the closing laps.
Richards was then held up at Forrest Elbow by a slower car on the final lap, allowing Russell to challenge for the lead entering The Chase. This challenge resulted in contact between the two drivers with Richards spinning onto the grass.
Russell crossed the line first, though was later handed a 13 second time penalty, relegating him to fifth.
Luff therefore inherited the race win from Michael Patrizi, Nick Foster with Richards recovering to finish fourth.
For Luff, the win was advantageous to his championship standing, who now sits 21 points ahead of Richards.
“I just tried to keep my nose clean today after the weekend that I’ve had and I was happy to have a clean race and stay out of trouble,” said Luff.
“Obviously we caught a lapped car at Forrest Elbow on the last lap, then I saw Russell get within striking distance of Richards. From behind it looked like he might have got into the back of Richards, then Richards went firing off. Obviously for Richards it’s disappointing but, for us from a championship standpoint, we have to grab every point we can get. You don’t want those situations happening; you still want to beat each other fair and square on the track.
“I’m looking forward to tomorrow and hopefully finish the weekend on a high.”
Davies finished sixth from McBride, Almond and Power – who dropped slightly in the order after contact between him and Baird at The Chase mid-race – from Duvashen Padayachee and Baird in 11th.
Smollen drove much of the race unchallenged at the head of the Elite Class, finishing in 12th position outright.
“For us it was pretty much a repeat of the first race. We went out on lower tyre pressures and the car came up beautifully in the second half of the race and did some really solid times, so I was really happy,” said Smollen.
“I think the margin to the next Elite Class driver was around 12 seconds in the end. I’ll focus on tomorrow and it would be great to take a trophy home that has ‘Bathurst’ written on it.”
Stephen Grove and Tony Walls were the next best Elite Class drivers in 13th and 14th respectively, from Brenton Ramsay, Renee Gracie, Tony Bates and Adrian Mastronardo in 18th.
An accident on the final lap between James Bergmuller, Ash Samadi and Scott Taylor ended the race for the Elite Class trio while Marc Cini also failed to finish with mechanical issues.
The final Porsche Carrera Cup Australia race of the Bathurst event will be held at 8:50am on Sunday, which will be broadcast live on Seven before the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 endurance event.
Sunday October 12, 2014
8:50am Race 3 10 laps
Race 3 (live)
Date: Sunday October 12, 2014
Time: 8:50am (local time)