In front of a bumper weekend crowd of over 175,000 fans, the second leg of the Armor All Gold Coast 600 was a more sedate affair than Saturday’s race. For Dick Johnson Racing, today’s race has delivered another strong result for the #12 Wilson Security backed car of Chaz Mostert / Dale Wood and another Top 20 result for the #17 Advam Falcon of Tim Blanchard & Ash Walsh.
Qualifying saw another Top 10 grid spot for Mostert in P9. Tim Blanchard could not repeat his Saturday form and lined up on row 12 of the grid. Once again it was up to the co drivers Dale Wood and Ash Walsh to do the opening stints of the race. Safety cars would play a role in ensuring the drivers completed their mandatory 34 laps and actually extended both drivers time in the seat. Wood was first to pit on Lap 21 under Safety Car with Walsh just missing the pit lane and completing another lap. The second stint was a long one and both DJR cars were making good progress through the field. Wood was running as high as 5th and Walsh just made the Top 10 as the stops again cycled through.
It was over to Mostert and Blanchard to run the final laps and with all cars on exactly the same fuel and tyre strategy it would be a race to the flag. Mostert was immediately on the pace moving up from 15th to just miss another Top 10 berth, a P11 backed up nicely his P9 from Saturday.
Blanchard was not able to capitalise as he felt he may have damaged a rim on one of the big kerbs on the Gold Coast track and had to drive with a heavy vibration for the final 20 odd laps. He would cross the line in P16, benefiting from late race accidents for Courtney and Moffat.
#17 – Advam Falcon – Tim Blanchard
“Not as good as yesterday, but we pushed on well. Ash did another great, and long, opening stint and we were in good shape. I think I bent a rim on one of the big kerbs on the last restart and it made the car a handful with a big vibration through the steering wheel. But the car is straight and we have some good points from the weekend. We are getting more competitive at every outing, the last couple of rounds in particular. I am looking forward to Phillip Island later this month.”
#17 – Advam Falcon – Ash Walsh – Co Driver
“We didn’t quite have the car we had yesterday. The start went well and I just wanted to keep out of trouble in those early laps. Our strategy just missed the opportunity to pit at the first Safety Car and I had to run another lap. It cost us track position but staying out longer in the second stint did give us back quite a few positions. We just didn’t have the pace at the end when everyone was on the same strategy. It has been a great experience to race the #17 DJR Falcon with Tim. To get good results at Bathurst and here made up for the Sandown hiccup!”