The Fosters Surfers Paradise V-Prix was won by home-town boy Nick Addison in a dominating performance. After qualifying on pole position, the Morley driver lost the lead briefly early in the race, but after regaining it just after quarter distance never looked back, even when the weather took a turn for the worse and caught some out.
From the start Addison was joined by Marcus Thunder, Hugh Dwyer and championship leader Brock Kidd, while new boy on the grid Alexander McLaughlin was 6th – the highest qualifying spot all season for the struggling Signature squad. Off the line, the order at the front remained relatively static, while Lewis Ellington shot up past McLaughlin and Keith Boston into 5th position. Meanwhile, Hiroto Nakumaya had a terrible start, falling from his 8th place grid spot down to 13th. While Kidd was right up at the top, the other two American Engineering cars suffered a miserable start – Luke Stokey ripped the right front wheel off the car when he misjudged the braking into one of the chicanes along Main Beach Parade and ploughed into a tyre barrier, while Mikko Heininen’s Chevrolet engine gave up just 13 laps into the race. Stokey’s accident drew the safety car out, and on lap 16, Hugh Dwyer made an audacious move on Addison into turn 3 to take the lead of the race.
Dwyer held the lead for only 10 laps when he ran wide into the turn 5/6 chicane. Despite keeping his car out of the wall, he lost the lead to Addison, and then fell to third at the hands of Marcus Thunder on lap 28. Keith Murphy made his move during this point in the race, climbing from 10th to 7th in the space of 3 laps – it might have been more, but on lap 32 Rodrigo Sanchez hit trouble in the turn 12 complex, ploughing into the wall and scrambling the safety car.
When the safety car returned to the pit lane on lap 38, Addison turned up the pace to a whole new level, pulling out a gap to Thunder at more than 6 tenths a lap. Kidd then made a stunning move on Dwyer to take 3rd place after running side by side in the high-speed turn 7/8 chicane. Murphy’s charge up the field hit trouble on lap 46 when he went straight on at turn 3, undoing all the work from earlier in the race.
On lap 56, all hell broke loose – the weather in Surfers Paradise became more suited to salmon as monsoon conditions hit the Queensland circuit. Yakumi Takahashi excelled in these conditions, pulling off overtake after overtake, moving up from 13th to an impressive 6th place, including a double move on McLaughlin and Boston into turn 3. The order at the front remained much the same, but further back, chaos ensued. On lap 61, Daniel Bruner was speared by Hiroto Nakumaya as the Japanese aquaplaned, eliminating both from 11th and 12th respectively. The accident was cleared up very efficiently under local yellows, but the safety car was eventually called into action for the third time when Felipe Cesar slid wide into Michal Kubat, pushing the Czech driver into the wall with both cars stuck in the middle of the track. With only two laps left until the chequered flag, the race ended under caution, with Addison ahead of Thunder, Kidd, Dwyer, Ellington and Takahashi.
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