Marcus Armstrong holds off Liam Lawson for thrilling first Toyota Racing Series victory
New Zealander Marcus Armstrong has taken home the Race 1 victory at Round 2 of the 2019 Castrol Toyota Racing Series at Teretonga Park.
Championship leader Liam Lawson secured pole position from rival Armstrong by one tenth of a second in wet conditions, which continued throughout the race.
Lawson faltered off the start and Armstrong took the early lead, building a two second gap to Russian Artem Petrov, while Lawson fell as low as fourth at the first corner before settling into third.
Lawson moved to the outside of Petrov along the main straight for the start of lap 3, and overtook the Russian on the outside of the long first corner, as has become Lawson’s trademark in the two TRS race weekends.
Lawson’s chase saw Armstrong’s lead quickly evaporate before a safety car gathered the pack for a final sprint to the finish. He fought hard around the outside of turn 1, but the Ferrari Academy Driver was able to hold him off. Lawson dipped a tyre off the track on the next lap, giving Armstrong the clear air to complete the final lap and take his first victory of 2019. Lawson finished second with Petrov holding on for third.
Lawson and Armstrong are now tied for the lead of the championship, with each driver on 113 points.
Further back, the UK’s Raoul Hyman stormed through the pack from his P11 qualifying position, landing in fourth place by the time of the safety car. A late charge on Petrov saw Hyman slip off the track in the penultimate lap and drop back to a P11 finish for no net gain.
Australian Calan Williams finished seventh, with Jackson Walls in P13 on debut, followed by Thomas Smith finishing in P14.
Race 1 Result – Teretonga Motorsport Park Round 2
Liam Lawson +0.436
Artem Petrov +1.663
Cameron Das +3.150
Lucas Auer +4.265
Kazuto Kotaka +4.287
Calan Williams (AUS) +4.948
Brendon Leitch +5.626
Esteban Muth +6.163
Dev Gore +7.074
Raoul Hyman +7.288
Petr Ptacek +7.634
Jackson Walls (AUS) +9.585
Thomas Smith (AUS) +9.665
Parker Locke +10.537
DNF - Petru Florescu