D’Alberto is crowned TCR Australia champion at Bathurst

D’Alberto is crowned TCR Australia champion at Bathurst

13 November 2022

Wall Racing’s Tony D’Alberto was crowned TCR Australia champion at the end of the last race meeting of the season at Bathurst Mount Panorama that provided full of drama. After Bailey Sweeny dominated the first race, the second was cancelled due to prohibitive weather conditions. In the last race, Will Brown put in all efforts to secure the title; he scored an authoritative victory, but D’Alberto’s 10th place was enough to remain on top of the standings.

Race 1 – At the start, Sweeny from P2 was faster than poleman Jay Hanson and led, while Jordan Cox elbowed his way from P18 on the grid to tenth. On his first outing in the Hyundai Elantra, fifth-placed Josh Buchan stalled and dropped at the back of the field. Sweeny created a small gap over Hanson, while Dylan O’Keeffe defended P3 from Nathan Morcom. After a safety car intervention, Aaron Cameron passed Ben Bargwanna for P5, Michael Caruso and Brown overtook Lachlan Mineeff for P7 and P8, Luke King passed Cox for P10, and Buchan passed D’Alberto for P13. In lap 17, Cox and King came together, and the latter retired, while Hanson crashed into the wall leaving Sweeny going to claim his second win of the season from O’Keeffe and Morcom. After the race, 5-second penalties were imposed on Cox and Caruso for racing incidents; so they dropped from 9th to 14th and from 6th to 10th respectively. 

Race 2 – Under pouring rain and with thick fog, Caruso and Morcom shared the front row as the field started behind the safety car, but after one lap the red flag was waved and eventually the race was cancelled. 

Race 3 – Sweeny started well from the pole, but O’Keeffe took the lead and then crashed into the wall during the first lap. Cameron jumped into P1, followed by Morcom, Brown and Sweeny who had dropped to fourth. Cox moved up to eighth passing Caruso, while D’Alberto was running 11th. In lap 3, Brown was under pressure from Sweeny and Bargwanna, while Buchan and Mineeff passed Teddy Clairet for P6 and P7. The two leaders made contact and their cars had damage. Morcom slowed and was passed by Brown and Sweeny in lap 6. The pair then, closed in on Cameron, while D’Alberto had dropped to 13th. In lap 8, Brown overtook Cameron and took the lead of the race and the championship. In lap 10, Cox pitted from eighth after hitting the wall; in lap 11, Sweeny passed Cameron for second, while Bargwanna pulled up from P5 and the safety car was deployed. Cox’s and Bargwanna’s troubles promoted D’Alberto into 11th place and back into the lead of the standings. Racing resumed in lap 15, with Sweeny taking the lead from Brown, while Buchan attacked Cameron for P3. Brown continued to put the pressure on Sweeny and repassed him during the last lap, claiming his first win of the season, while Buchan passed Cameron for P3. D’Alberto finished 11th and secured the championship. 


Bathurst – Race 1

1. Bailey Sweeny (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai i30 N), 18 laps

2. Dylan O’Keeffe (Garry Rogers Motorsport, Peugeot 308), 1.8857

3. Nathan Morcon (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai i30 N), 3.3995


Bathurst – Race 3

1. Will Brown (MPC Racing, Audi RS 3 LMS II), 17 laps

2. Bailey Sweeny (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai i30 N), 1.4633

3. Josh Buchan (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai Elantra N), 1.7101


Championship points

1. T. D’Alberto, 711 pts; 2. W. Brown 702; 3. J. Buchan 667 


Picture: TCR Australia/Daniel Kalisz


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