Power Rankings Team TRT March 18, 2024 (Comments off) (317)

Power Rankings: Race Tasmania

Well. From HOT brain explosion emojis to NOT brain explosion emojis, the SpeedSeries visit to the Apple Isle and Symmons Plains for AWC Race Tasmania turned on a heck of a show.

ABOUT THE RANKINGS: The TRT Power Rankings are compiled by your nominations from social media and edited by the TRT editorial team. They’re designed to give a balanced, as fair as possible critical overview of those things that excelled and those things that struggled, at each event. It’s (mostly) a democracy, and what you nominate generates the order, so have your say next event via our social media channels, @theracetorque on Facebook, Twitter and Insta. Look for the call out each evening and get commenting!


1. TCR Race Three

See NOT for why everyone drove like a bunch of cut snakes. Absolute madness in what we could argue was the most insane TCR Australia race contested in the history of the category. Two parts terrifying, three parts brilliance – it was a cross between non-stage managed WWF and Talladega Nights. If this were what was served up week in and week out, TCR would be the most popular thing, well… ever.

2. Trans Ams

Highlights galore. As an example, the one-lap race to the chequered flag in race two was simply mega. A spec class stacked with driving talent and meaningful, high stakes absolutely turns on the action. HOT.

3. Excels

Anytime, anywhere Hyundai Excels race, they are a deadset highlight. Showing the category’s nationwide credentials, the Tassie chapter of the class is absolutely as good as those found anywhere else around the nation. As an example, the penultimate race was an absolute ripper, with the top-five finishing within a second. Five stars, would recommend.

4. Jordan Boys and then James Golding, Elliot Barbour

Boys vaulted to the top in qualifying, then absolutely smashed them in race one with a 4sec margin that is rarely seen at this level of competition, with the Race Academy squad coming to the fore, with teammate Elliot Cleary also showing strong form. When Boys faltered, James Golding picked up the pieces, and he was mega in showing the field how it’s done in just taking overall honours from the ever-consistent Elliot Barbour, who bounced back with vengeance in Tassie.

5. Tom Oliphant

Through the shambles and shenanigans of TCR, the Brit landed on top of the points. Now that he is at one with what is clearly a good piece of kit, the Oliphant/Hyundai combination has massive potential.

6. Sports Sedans

The Nationals Sports Sedans hadn’t been to Symmons Plains in more than 30 years, but they made a splash on their return to a venue that is perfectly suited to the long Tassie drag strips. Peter Ingram had a big weekend with a sweep, with a highlight being the RX7 driver holding off Steven Tamasi in a one-lap sprint to the finish in the opener.

7. Tassie Tin Tops

A smaller than normal grid, but an interesting mix that continues to be an oddity when the circuit travels across Bass Strait. Who doesn’t love to see a Pontiac NASCAR against AMG GT4 against Holden Commodores on a level playing field?

8. The TV Intro + TV things

Dipping into the Channel 7 archives is HOT. Also, 7 opening up the use of commercial music just adds to the vibe of it being a big ticket sporting event and broadcast. The coverage was excellent all weekend and especially the way they handled the TCR trials and tribulations on Sunday – it was raw content that gave both sides of the argument. Great stuff.

9. Greg Rust

This week, Rusty joined us On The Grid, and it was a tremendous chat. Listen in:

10. Symmons Plains

Seriously, what a ripper little race track. Small spot fires aside – see NOTs below – it’s a great place for motor racing. The commentators called it the ‘Bullring’ all weekend and they’re right. It’s proof you don’t need a 90 second lap to produce good racing. It never ceases to amaze how people who laid out a circuit 64 years ago, probably with a tractor but probably just by going for a walk, can make a better race track for – you know, racing – than people spending $1bn on a middle east monstrosity. Great place.


It’s just a great place for sport and in particular, Motorsport. Passionate fans, great heritage and solid support.

Hearing Barry Oliver calling again
He was on the on-track PA commentary on Friday and it was a blast from the past, and a welcome one at that.

There was a bigscreen trackside!
Proof that some promoters read the Power Rankings, sometimes.

7sport socials
Between Seven’s own socials and the SpeedSeries accounts, there was plenty of highlights being shared all weekend. Great to see how they have engaged with it.


Q. What’s the opposite of ‘intermittent’?

A. Mittent …apparently

Mr Wong was called
We are unsure if this relates to esteemed Australian motorsport photographer, Nathan.


1-3. TCR Race Three Grid-clustery

In summary:

1) The opening race was called short due to the Casha crash, the recovery / red flag and then the delay in working out the restart procedure.

2) Race two saw the Race 1 top ten reversed for the race start – as per the rules – which ultimately mixed the final order.

3) As it transpires, the first race wasn’t eligible for points, something which was seemingly figured out very late in the piece and also following a protest from one of the teams. This got noses out of joint because of how they played race one and race two.

4) The grid – set on points from Race 1 and Race 2 – for the finale was another thoroughly mixed bag as a result of there only being one race’s worth of points to draw from, namely the mixed-up Race 2 finishing order. This caused grief for those caught on the hop – and joy for those who found themselves free-kicked up the order.

5) Rumours swirled that competitors were going to sit out in protest, although ultimately, only 2022 Champion Tony D’Alberto was alone in being parked up.

6) The ill-feeling saw everyone drive angry, and absolute chaos ensued, see: HOT.

7) However, portions absolutely overstepped the HOT threshold, see below.

This promises to be an ongoing talking point for some time…

2. TCR Race One Start

Firstly, Tony D’Alberto clearly jumped the start from pole, then Ryan Casha was squeezed into the turn three wall after a very impressive qualifying run, losing a wheel and sailing into the Hairpin sand trap brakeless. D’Alberto was ultimately saved when the red flag was summonsed, fully resetting the race. In the end, only 10 laps were officially logged and after much trial and tribulation no points were awarded, despite giving the best impression of a race when everyone went home on Saturday. Ultimately, this situation would have snowball-style effects for TCR come Sunday.

5. Being too hot

Multiple grassfires across the weekend have given the Symmons Plains groundsfolk a lot less lawn to tend to this week. Hell, at one stage, two blazes raged simultaneously.

The fire in the opening Trans Ams certainly raised eyebrows when the fire tender was scrambled into the outfield as cars roared into the area at full racing speed.

6. Hairpin biffos

7. There were other biffos, too

8. Sports Sedan big guns MIA

While 16 cars was still decent considering the logistics of racing at Symmons Plains, but it was a shame to see some of the major Sports Sedan draws not make it to the Spirit of Tasmania.

Also, an adjacent NOT goes to having the opening National round scheduled for the same weekend as state events in Queensland and Victoria.

9. Aaron Cameron Pinged

After initially qualifying in fifth, the Valvoline Peugeot driver received a five-grid place for a tyre irregularity. Costly in such tight competition and something that could have title ramifications down the line.


Internet at Symmons Plains

While the crowd was okay, it wasn’t Supercars spec – but that didn’t stop the internet at Symmons being borderline unusable on Saturday and Sunday. At this level it’s not good enough and it’s something that the promoter, Motorsport Tasmania and their friends in Government need to push hard to upgrade.


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