KFC/Moveitnet/Local Roadways/AFS/Bryant & Bryant Audi R8 driver Tony Bates has extended his phenomenal winning streak at the Adelaide street circuit with a comfortable victory in Race 1 of the Audi Sport R8 LMS Cup today – his 13th win from 15 starts at the venue.
From pole position, Bates shot to an early lead, leaving the other contenders to fight over the minor places.
Throughout the rest of the race, Bates managed his margin to the cars behind and eventually won by more than 10 seconds, but he said it was far from a straightforward encounter.
“In the first couple of laps, Yasser (Shahin) was coming at me, and I had to press hard to extend the gap,” Bates said.
“I was managing the margin, but the temperature inside the car was extreme, and sweat started to drip into my eyes.
“I had to wipe my eyes with a few laps to go, and Yasser closed in – I couldn’t afford to make a single mistake.
“On the last lap, Yasser dropped back with a problem; my final winning margin certainly didn’t reflect how hard I had to work for the race win today.”
Earlier in the day, Bates qualified third-fastest for tomorrow’s second race, a red flag ruining his opportunity to take back-to-back pole positions.
“Once again, the car felt really good and the lap I was on when the red flag came out would have been good enough for pole,” Bates said.
“Starting from third on the grid will make it much more challenging tomorrow, as will the 30 kilogram handicap for winning today – I’ll need to come out fighting.
The second race will be held at 11:10 tomorrow (11:40 in the eastern states).