Testing session brings final round drama for Toyota series leader Blewett

Published 25 March 2016

Championship leader Ash Blewett has struck problems in test sessions today for the Toyota Finance 86 Championship at Taupo’s Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park.

Blewett, dominant from the opening round in late 2015, has a commanding lead in the championship but struck brake problems on the sixth lap of the final session and went off, damaging his TR 86 race car. The incident happened at the fast turn onto the circuit’s long straight, and the car slid off the tarmac and hit the tyre wall.

The crash damaged  the driver’s side of the car and his crew now face an extended session in the pit garages to get the car ready for qualifying and racing tomorrow. Once the damage is set right they must also determine the nature of the brake problem.

“The brakes didn’t lock up, I had no brake warning on the data system, but the pedal was full hard it the car didn’t slow down,” he said.

Blewett was able to extract the car from the tyre wall and pitted for a visual check before rejoining the session. Despite the crash, he also set fastest lap of the session, a 1:42.007 on lap four.

Cockerton quick in opening session

Meanwhile, Pukekohe driver Taylor Cockerton set the pace in the opening practice session. In his first full-field session in a TR 86 on the 3.33 km ‘international’ circuit at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Cockerton put in a 1:42.752 on a wet but drying track.

Second quickest and returning to the series was Jayden Dodge on 1:43.356, with another driver new to the series, Martin Short of Hamilton, was third on 1:43.507.

Masters category leader John Penny was fourth, while rookie leader Ryan Yardley was taking his time to familiarise himself with the track and began the day with a cautious ninth.

Jacob Smith was slowed by a front wheel bearing issue.

Yardley tops session two

In the second session, with the track fully dry and only a light breeze blowing, rookie leader Ryan Yardley surged to the front with a 1:41.417, having changed tyres on the Carevets TR 86.

Championship leader Ash Blewett was second quickest and the only other driver to break into the 1:14s.

Third quickest as the field settled into more predictable conditions was Taylor Cockerton.

The third and final session of the day belonged to Blewett, with John Penny just .002 behind and Carevets team driver Michael Scott third overall.

On-track action resumes with qualifying tomorrow at 10 am and the first of three races at 1.40 pm.

The 2015-2016 Toyota Finance 86 Championship is exclusive to locally-built TR 86 race versions of Toyota’s acclaimed  86 sports coupe which can be leased or purchased from Toyota Racing New Zealand. The championship is televised on TV3 and SKY, with series and race weekend information available on the Toyota Racing website, Facebook page and Twitter account.

Alexander-takes-early-Toyota-86-Championship-lead-at-Pukekohe_ARTICLE_300x170 Alexander takes early Toyota 86 Championship lead at Pukekohe

Published 6 November 2017

Bombay’s Tom Alexander has set his mark of the opening round of the 2017-2018 Toyota 86 Championship, taking an early points lead with two wins and a second place.

Read more

Alexander-and-Milligan-share-first-victories-in-2017-2018-Toyota-86-Championship_ARTICLE_300x170 Alexander and Milligan share first victories in 2017-2018 Toyota 86 Championship

Published 6 November 2017

In unpredictable weather two masters of the Toyota 86 Championship are showing their form: Jack Milligan and Tom Alexander have each won a race and are locked in battle for early dominance of the series.

Read more

Dry-wet-qualifying-revs-up-Toyota-86-Championship_ARTICLE_300x170 Dry-wet qualifying revs up Toyota 86 Championship

Published 6 November 2017

New names and returnees share pole for two of the weekend’s three races as the 2017-2018 Toyota 86 Championship kicks off this weekend.

Read more

Contact Toyota Racing

Follow us

TRS logo Social Media
Toyota Racing New Zealand
toyota-nz-icon
Toyota New Zealand
toyota-86-nz-icon
Toyota 86 New Zealand