Porsche Carrera Cup Australia points leader Steven Richards is confident of a strong second half of the season following an unorthodox preparation for this weekend’s Sydney Motorsport Park round.
Richards, who is tied on points with fellow front-runner Warren Luff, is today concluding a six-day Postie Bike journey from Melbourne to Gold Coast for the Laser Group Postie Bike Challenge – an initiative to raise awareness of mental illness and depression amongst the trade industry and male population for beyondblue.
Richards and his 21 fellow riders are finishing their 2000 km journey today before the Victorian travels to Sydney Motorsport Park to defend his Carrera Cup points lead.
“This trip has been on the cards for 12 months. Many tradies experience tough times so Laser Plumbing & Electrical came up with this idea in support of beyondblue. We aimed to raise about $1,500 each and we’ve managed to raise over $100,000 in total,” said Richards.
“It has been a great journey with all kinds of weather – we’ve worn jackets and thermals to t-shirts – and have only experience one flat tyre between us.”
Though Richards’ event preparation is unconventional, he is approaching this round like any other.
“We’ll approach the Sydney event much the same as we did at Townsville. We have a good handle on the car at the moment and, with half the championship still to go, we’ll keep doing what we’re doing and see where it takes us.”
Craig Baird sits third in the championship behind Richards and Luff, and will this weekend move past Rodney Jane to claim second on the all-time round starts list for the category with his 55th round start.
The Elite Class will grow this round with the inclusion of two newcomers – Scott Taylor and Greg Taylor (unrelated).
Scott Taylor has stepped up to the Carrera Cup category with two seasons’ experience in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Australia series.
“GT3 Cup Challenge has enabled me to understand and appreciate what it takes to drive a Porsche because they’re different than any other car,” said Scott Taylor.
“It wasn’t hard adapting to the new car at all which will help this weekend. It’s ergonomically much better and I certainly feel very comfortable in the new car.”
Sydneysider Greg Taylor will also join the Elite Class ranks at his home circuit in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup formerly driven by Dean Koutsoumidis in the opening two rounds.
“I made the Sydney Motorsport Park round the focus for my Carrera Cup debut. I was originally going to start in Carrera Cup next year but nothing substitutes getting in the car and having a go. I’m very excited about this weekend at the track that I’ve driven the most miles,” said Greg Taylor.
Stephen Grove entered the season’s half way mark with a substantial 97 point lead in the Elite Class, helped by a DNF result from his nearest points rival James Bergmuller in Townsville’s third race.
Porsche Carrera Cup Australia has raced at Sydney Motorsport Park on six occasions, most recently at last season’s Porsche Rennsport Australia event. The category also used the Sydney circuit for its official hand-over event for the introduction of its new Porsche 911 (Type 991) GT3 Cup cars in January this year.
Friday August 22, 2014
9:45am – 10:05am Practice 1 20 minutes
11:45am – 12:05pm Practice 2 20 minutes
Saturday August 23, 2014
9:55am – 10:15am Qualifying 20 minutes
3:35pm – 4:05pm Race 1 14 laps
Sunday August 24, 2014
9:00am – 9:30am Race 2 14 laps
2:35pm – 3:05pm Race 3 14 laps