Clay Richards: Round 2 in Sydney
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Clay Richards: Round 2 in Sydney

By Shannons - 04 August 2023

The second round of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Australia 86 Series was held at Sydney Motorsport park over the weekend. It was a tough weekend to say the least but raced hard and learnt so much.

Two practice session on Friday allowed us to tune the setup on the car before Qualifying on Saturday. I placed 17th in the first session and made a few tweaks before practice 2 to finish 7th which was a great improvement and a step forward in the right direction.

On Saturday it was a late start for us compared to normal. Qualifying was on at 1pm and our first race at 6pm which was a night race. I’d never done a night race before so I was looking forward to racing under the track lights. Unfortunately we would have our work cut out for us as we qualified in 21st. The reason being was our tyre pressures didn’t come up to the appropriate pressure. Tyre pressures play such a crucial part in qualifying and if you get it wrong it can do a world of damage.

Race 1 was under lights and had a lot of fun moving up through the field from 21st to 14th in 10 laps. Car felt very competitive so I was really happy with the result.

Sunday was our last day of racing. Race 2 was held in the morning and starting out of 14th I got a great start to move quickly into the top 10. Towards the middle part of the race I got damage from a driver who pushed me into another car and damaged the steering. This would cause the car to understeer and loose a lot of time. I fell back l down to 16th but had a heap of car speed.

Race 3 was a lot more positive starting from 16th I got another good start and got up to 13th until a safety car was called halfway into the race due to an accident. We only got one lap of racing once the safety car period was over. I crossed the line in 13th but after a few race penalties moved up into 12th.

It was a tough weekend definitely had a competitive car but just at the wrong end of the field. Our next round is at Tailem Bend in South Australia which I’m confident we can be back up the front again.

A big thanks to everyone for the support over the weekend especially to My Dad, Rohan, Rodney, my Mum and all of our partners. I know our next race will be a lot better.