Fantastic run at Bathurst nets second outright for Laser Racing

srm-richards-carreracup-r7-16-1097_medThe name Richards and success are synonymous with Mount Panorama, so it’s perhaps no surprise that Steven Richards enjoyed a successful run during round seven of the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia championship at Bathurst, the Laser Racing star leaving the iconic venue with three podium finishes and a big haul of points heading into the season final on the Gold Coast in two weeks time.

The weekend started strongly for the 2014 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia champion, experience contributing to his pace right from the outset, the #12 Laser Plumbing & Electrical Porsche never outside the top three from the opening practice session.

Ultimately Richards qualified third – mere thousandths of a second off a front row start – before claiming a hat-trick of podium finishes to be classified second for the weekend, whilst team-mate James Bergmuller enjoyed another outstanding weekend, claiming the TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge victory for the second round in succession.

“Overall I have to say I’m overjoyed with the result,” Richards admitted. “We came into Bathurst with the goal of claiming as many points as possible, but despite leading at one stage in race three, I was forced to settle for two seconds and a third, but around Bathurst I’ll take that every time,” he admitted.

“Of course we’d have loved to have added another Bathurst victory to the resume, but the important thing for the championship was to score as many points as possible. Sadly, the title looks to almost be in Matt Campbell’s grasp, but after a big haul of points on the weekend, we’ve gained ground on the battle for second in the championships, so we’re not out of this yet.

“This one was a real team effort, especially with the big commitments I had to the V8 Supercar program with Craig [Lowndes], that often saw me leaping out of the Porsche and straight into the Holden, so I had to rely very hard on the guys to prepare the car and they again did an outstanding job.

“As for the V8, sadly there was to be no repeat of our 2015 victory, after a gear shifter failed after 40-odd laps which saw us spend six laps in the garage, but that’s motor racing, you have to take the good with the bad.

“For the Steve Richards Motorsport team, for the most part we enjoyed a brilliant weekend, and to see James [Bergmuller] claim back-to-back wins in the TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge was great, especially with the team taking on the added pressure of a third car for Tony Longhurst.

“Up until his accident in qualifying Tony had shown terrific pace and was loving every second of it, but a slight error over Skyline put paid to his weekend. Despite that, he was overjoyed with the car and he was immediately pretty quick – he was almost like a young guy having his first laps at the mountain, you couldn’t wipe the smile off his face!

“For now it’s on to the final event of the season at a venue where we’ve tasted success before, and where we’ll be going all-out again to claim the best result we can to keep this championship fight alive.”

The final round of the 2016 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia season will see Richards return to the streets of Surfers Paradise on 21-23 October for the final showdown.

Race#1 (9-laps) – 7 October
1. 7. Matt Campbell (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
2. 38. David Wall (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
3. 12. Steven Richards (Laser Racing Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
4. 25. Alex Davison (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
5. 26. Michael Almond (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)

Race#2 (9-laps) – 8 October
1. 7. Matt Campbell (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
2. 12. Steven Richards (Laser Racing Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
3. 38. David Wall (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
4. 25. Alex Davison (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
5. 777. Ashley Walsh (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)

Race#3 (9-laps) – 9 October
1. 7. Matt Campbell (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
2. 12. Steven Richards (Laser Racing Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
3. 38. David Wall (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
4. 777. Ashley Walsh (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)
5. 77. Nick McBride (Porsche 991 GT3 Cup)

Source. Motorsport Media

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