Chelsea Angelo has become the first female to take victory in a carsales TCR Australia SimRacing Series race at the Adelaide street circuit last night.
Driving her Astrontech Volkswagen Golf, Angelo jumped from second place on the final lap to take a surprise win after race-long leader Rowan Shepherd’s Audi race out of fuel on the last lap.
In what proved to be a drama-filled round, series leader Dylan O’Keeffe, competing in Switzerland after his successful Renault Megane RS test in Austria, was hampered by internet and technical problems.
It meant that he was only able to qualify fifth – his worst result for the year – and his luck did not improve when he finished sixth in the first race, only to be involved in a huge crash at the start of the second race, ruling him out.
It left the door open for series rival Ben Bargwanna to swoop through to a 29 point series lead with just one round to go.
Bargwanna finished third and fourth in the two races, in what is a strong, but not unassailable advantage.
While Bargwanna is now the man to catch, the fastest driver in Adelaide was Wall Racing Honda driver John Martin. The Queenslander qualified on pole and scored the win in the first race ahead of his team-mate Tony D’Alberto.
Like O’Keeffe, Martin was involved in a number of car crunches in Race 2, dropping him out of the running for round honours.
But the result of the night went to reverse grid race winner Angelo, who as the only female driver in the TCR Australia SimRacing Series, was over the moon to take victory against her male rivals.
“I’m stoked with that. I didn’t think I was going to be near the front at this event,” she said after the race.
“For me, my focus for that second race was to be consistent. I was managing the gap and trying to be as consistent as I could.
“There was a bit of luck in the end, but I know how it feels. In the ARG eSport Cup, I ran out of fuel one the last lap and lost a podium, so I know how Rowan feels.
“But it’s good to have the win. I’m stoked. It’s nice to have a win to my name.”
The final round of the carsales TCR Australia SimRacing Series will be held at the Macau street track in two weeks’ time.