Liam Talbot has taken his second successive CAMS Australian GT Championship race win in the MEGA Racing Porsche at Barbagallo Raceway this afternoon, which has led to a double celebration due to also (unofficially) taking the Championship lead.
The day started with a MEGA result in the second qualifying session, setting the fastest time and banking the maximum qualifying points for the session. By virtue of yesterday’s session being faster than today’s he would start the race seventh.
When the lights went out for the 60 minute race, the 2016 Blancpain Endurance Series Champion quickly got himself to fifth.
Two Safety Car interventions within the first half hour caused havoc for the teams and their strategy plays.
Talbot’s Walkinshaw GT3 team kept their cool among the chaos knowing they had a lesser stationary time in the pits against all of those in front of him.
Coming into the round 97 points off the lead of the Championship, (unofficially) Talbot will take the lead in the Title chase by 11 points heading into tomorrow’s race taking into account qualifying points, the 100 points for the win and given that the Championship leader coming into the weekend didn’t finish the race.
Today’s race win adds to Talbot’s victory at the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park in March – his third in the Australian GT Championship and is the third major piece of silverware in 2017 after his class victory at the Bathurst 12 Hour in February.
It also continues the good run of Walkinshaw GT3 and the Porsche 911 GT3-R at Barbagallo Raceway, having finished last year’s second race in third at the hands of John Martin and Aaron Tebb.
Tomorrow, Talbot will take on another 60 minute race in support of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship Perth Supersprint event at 11:30am local time (1:30pm Eastern).
Liam Talbot Racing is supported by MEGA Limited – Australia’s newest Petroleum company, along with Wash-It Mobile Truck Wash and Walkinshaw GT3 sponsors, Morris Finance and Urban Maintenance Systems.
LIAM’S LOWDOWN – RACE 1 WINNER!:
“It feels unbelievable to get the second win on the trot for the MEGA Racing team.
“It is a complete team effort around here, you need to come the right strategy and I believe that the two wins in a row are down to the strategy by Mat Nilsson and the Walkinshaw GT3 team executing perfect pit stop today.
“We made a few guesses overnight and between sessions, the car was simply MEGA. During the race, we didn’t use all the tyre available to us due to safety cars and were wondering if there would be more. The Porsche is really strong in the back part of race. This weekend for us is playing to our strengths and that’s what we’ve been concentrating on.
“The most important outcome is that our competitor lost points and we gained a lot of points. Our strategy from the start of the year has been to sit back and grab the points when we could and I think we’ve been able to maximise that strategy through the races so far.
“Today the whole focus was to go out, have a MEGA race and get more points toward the Championship!”
2017 Australian GT Championship Calendar:
1. Mar 2 – 5 Clipsal 500, Adelaide, South Australia – 4th
2. Mar 23 – 26 Australian Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria – 3rd
3. May 5 – 7 Perth Super Sprint, Barbagallo, Western Australia
4. Jul 7 – 9 Townsville 400, Townsville, Queensland
5. Sep 15 – 17 Sandown 500, Sandown Raceway, Victoria
2017 Australian Endurance Championship Calendar:
1. May 26 – 28 Phillip Island, Phillip Island, Victoria
2. Aug 18 – 20 Sydney Motorsport Park, Sydney Motorsport Park, NSW
3. Oct 27 – 29 Hampton Downs, Hampton Downs, New Zealand
4. Nov 10 – 12 Highlands 501 Highlands Park, Cromwell, NZ
Further Sources of Information: