Dalton joins a talented list of Trans Am Series winners
AWC’s Lochie Dalton has put the series on notice after converting a National Trans Am pole position into his first series race win at Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton.
The Tasmanian had no troubles with the rolling start and was able to hold off The Racing Academies Cody Gilles into turn one, while third and fourth remained the same with All American Drivelines Ben Grice and Garry Rogers Motorsport’s Owen Kelly not far behind.
Making up positions quickly was Phillip Island round winner Nash Morris, taking the inside line with a late braking manoeuvre at turn one to recover lost time in qualifying and sit in seventh.
Meanwhile, Elliot Cleary managed to rally his Ford Mustang in the grass at turn one, as TPS Group / Breeze Holiday Park’s Brett Holdsworth was spun by Pioneer Dj entry Elliot Barbour in a chaotic opening lap – the latter receiving a drive through penalty as a result.
Series leader, James Moffat and Supercheap Auto’s Morris provided onlookers with a replay of the spectacular Phillip Island race three battle, which ended in the closest finish in series history.
Moffat would prevail over the fast-starting Morris in an entertaining battle and form a gap through to the later stages of the race.
An unlucky Tom Hayman had to make an unplanned trip into the pit-lane after his Ford Mustang suffered a transmission issue, but the Phillip Island podium-getter was able to rejoin the race thanks to the efforts of his Tom Hayman Racing crew.
Unfortunately, the same couldn’t be said for The Racing Academies Tyler Everingham, whose season went from bad to worse after having to retire the car in his debut with the new team.
Dalton ensured a perfect Saturday at the Winton Motor Raceway by crossing the line a second clear of Gillis at race end, claiming his first ever series win in the process.
Finishing in third was Grice, while Kelly surrendered the podium position after a puncture in the final laps dropped the former Nascar driver all the way down to 12th.
The left-rear puncture to Kelly’s Ford Mustang promoted Jackson Rice into fourth in his return to the series with Dream Racing Australia – An incredible result for the young Wodonga product at his home circuit.
Sydney Property Care and GRM entry Edan Thornburrow will be happy with a fifth-place finish, while Moffat was able to hold off Morris to claim sixth.
Cleary and Holdsworth recovered nicely from earlier incidents to finish eighth and ninth, while The Tefol Group newcomer Nick Lange rounded out the top ten in his 2023 series debut.
Joining a small but elite list of winners in the Trans Am category, Dalton was pleased to get the job done for his team on such a special weekend.
“It feels good, it’s a credit to the team they have worked really hard and gave me an awesome car,” Dalton said.
“It didn’t matter where I put it, it just stuck. It’s good to reward my family in attendance and to reward Garry on the 60th anniversary (of the team).”
The National Trans Am Series will return for another two thrilling editions at Hi-Tec Oils Race Winton on Sunday at 11:55am AEST and 3:15pm AEST.
You can catch all the action live, on-demand, and ad-break free on Stan Sport from 9:30am AEST on Sunday.