Porsche whiz Alex Davison has reclaimed the lead of the Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia championship after a ‘satisfying’ victory at Barbagallo Raceway.
Davison was hounded by his rivals the entire 17 lap Saturday race at the West Australian circuit after gaining the lead from the start from second position on the grid.
The Queensland based racer initially held off strong challenges from reigning champion and pole-sitter Baird; the duo leading a four-way battle pack at the front which also included Jonny Reid and Nick Foster.
Baird however dropped back to third at the end of lap nine after hitting the exit kerb of the final corner after an attempted outside pass of the leader Davison.
Reid then advanced to second and soon challenged Davison for the lead, however Davison was able to hold his position and claim his third race win of the season, along with the championship lead.
“It was a hard race - one of those races where you’ve got guys climbing all over you, so to win it is very satisfying,” said Davison.
“We didn’t have the same pace of Craig in the first few laps. Jonny then had more pace than us later in the race; he was all over me but we managed to hang on and get the win.
“Now we’ve got to put our heads together tonight and squeeze a bit more pace out of the car because, although we won, we’re really struggling a lot compared to the other drivers.”
“It’s also great to take back the lead of the championship. I really want to be in this position at the end of the round. I’ll be even happier if that’s the case.”
Reid claimed second position for the race, closely trailed by Baird and Foster; with Daniel Gaunt, Steven Richards and Tom Tweedie further behind in fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively.
At the head of the Elite Class was eighth-placed finisher James Koundouris, who ran the majority of his ‘lonely’ race clear of his on-track rivals, finishing ahead of 16-year-old Andre Heimgartner, Shane Smollen, Tony Bates and Michael Loccisano.
“The race was a little bit on the lonely side,” said Koundouris.
“I just had to make sure we saved the tyres because we flat spotted a couple in Qualifying. The plan was just to finish, save the tyres and not damage them in any way, and we did that.
“I think we have a lot more pace than what we showed in today’s race. I obviously want to win in the Elite Class, but I’d much rather focus on being up the grid a bit further and beating some of the young guys home.”