Saturday at the VALO Adelaide 500 has delivered plenty of character-building moments for PremiAir Racing, with the team now working hard to put today behind them and focus on a better tomorrow for what will be the final day of the 2022 Repco Supercars Championship and their rookie season.
Jimmy Golding in the #31 Subway PremiAir Racing Supercar started the 78-lap race from 6th position after laying down the 7th fastest lap in the team’s second Top Ten Shootout appearance. The #31 was then elevated to 6th and the third row on the grid when another competitor was disqualified from the shootout.
While Golding got off to a good start, he struggled with a loose car and worked hard on the roll bars while battling for position in the top six to balance the car. Unfortunately, he would go on to make contact with the turn eight wall early in the piece, damaging the power steering in the process.
Golding brought the car back to the pits and into the garage for lengthy repairs as the team replaced the power steering rack and pump, only heading back out on the track in the final moments for a few sighting laps.
For Chris Pither in the #22 PremiAir Coca-Cola Racing Supercar, contact with the wall following his second pit stop saw the car brought into the garage for repairs. The time lost in that process saw him left to circulate down the order, crossing the finish line in 19th position.
PremiAir Racing Team Principal, Matt Cook, explained that while it was a tough day, the team are already looking ahead to tomorrow.
“It was a really big day today,” Cook said.
“We had a third practice session to start which is a little unique, but we managed to learn a lot there.
“Then we were into the Top Ten Shootout with Jimmy in the #31 Subway PremiAir Racing Supercar, and he did a great job to secure the 7th spot on the grid, which then ended up being elevated to 6th.
“We got the race underway, and we had some fast cars. Unfortunately, both cars went on to have incidents where they touched the wall and bent some steering.
“It makes it quite difficult when that happens, you have to balance the risk versus the reward, and we had to make the tough call to bring the cars in – with the high speeds they go through here, safety has to be the priority.
“So, we brought them both in and fixed them up and got them going again. Unfortunately, the #31 was a few too many laps down to be classified as a race finisher, so once we knew the car was safe and ready for tomorrow, we brought Jimmy back in, and he finished the race in the garage. Chris meanwhile did a great job when we sent him back out – he kept driving around and persevered with the damage he had and took the chequered flag, so he did a great job.
“All in all, it isn’t a day we will be writing home about, but these kind of days happen in racing, and you just have to regroup and learn your lessons and start making your moves to ensure the next day is better, and that is exactly what we are doing.”
PremiAir Racing will be back on track at the VALO Adelaide 500 tomorrow, Sunday 4 December, for the final race of the season. The day will kick off with qualifying at 10.50am, followed by the Top Ten Shootout at 12.05pm. Race 34 will then commence at 2.45pm. For event information, visit www.supercars.com.au
For more information on PremiAir Racing, please visit www.premiairracing.com or follow the team on its social media platforms at www.facebook.com/PremiAirRacing/, www.instagram.com/premiair_racing/, www.linkedin.com/company/premiairracing/ and www.twitter.com/premiairracing