Lucas Auer wins in Taupo as Toyota Racing Series championship rivals struggle
Liam Lawson was hoping to capitalise on his second pole position of the weekend in Race 2 at Taupo, but was bested at the start by Lucas Auer, who lead from the first corner to the flag for a faultless victory in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series.
“We have had a very smooth weekend up to now. It’s a lot easier to work without any problems," said Auer. “I won the start and pushed very hard before settling down a bit. I tried to look after the tyres because this track is so aggressive on the tyres."
Lawson suffered from wheel spin and was bogged down at the start, with Auer taking the lead from second place, while Lawson’s championship rival Marcus Armstrong also took the opportunity to pass the slow Lawson.
As the race began to settle, Armstrong went wide, driving off through the dirt and falling to the back of the pack. Damage to the Ferrari Academy driver’s car meant that he had to pull into the pits, and his race seemed over.
A chasing pack followed a few seconds behind the lead pair, with Hyman leading a train of four, sometimes five, cars. Leitch battled Petrov for fifth and the move seemed complete with Leitch’s bold overtake into turn one, but the experienced Kiwi later fell back behind the Russian.
Kazuto Kotaka’s pass attempt on Australian Jackson Walls saw Kotaka lose his front wing, and a small pack emerged as Das and Williams began to challenge Walls for position.
At the front, Lawson chased down Auer and narrowed the margin, but could not get past the Austrian, who ended the race in first.
Marcus Armstrong returned to the track for the final laps to claim vital championship points - but did not complete the required 12 laps to be eligible - while Australian Jackson Walls finished in P8 and Calan Williams finished P9.
2019 Castrol Toyota Racing Series – Race 2 Result, Round 4 Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupo
Liam Lawson +0.476
Raoul Hyman +12.396
Artem Petrov +13.990
Brendon Leitch +17.202
Esteban Muth +17.747
Petr Ptacek +23.277
Jackson Walls (AUS) +24.641
Calan Williams (AUS) +25.845
Dev Gore +32.231
Cameron Das +30.187
Petru Florescu +32.780
Parker Locke +33.171
Thomas Smith (AUS) +52.768
FULL RESULTS TO COME