Unfortunate Safety Car Timing costs Bates at Barbagallo

Tony Bates has finished 11th in Race 1, Round 3 of the Australian GT Championship at Barbagallo today, but felt he could have achieved more in his Moveitnet/C-Tech Laser/Local Roadways/Bryant & Bryant Mercedes-AMG GT3.

Starting 13th on the grid, Bates moved inside the top 10 before taking his compulsory pit stop as soon as the window opened.

However, a Safety Car deployment soon after handed the advantage to those who delayed their pit stops and Bates lost a number of places in the strategy shuffle.

Not to be discouraged, he punched out the third-fastest lap of the race as he staged a determined recovery drive.

“We were really unlucky with the timing of the Safety Car, it didn’t play to our pit strategy,” Bates said.

“However, there are still some encouraging aspects to take away from today. The car was excellent – the Eggleston Motorsport crew did a great job of tuning it up overnight, and that was demonstrated in our pace.

“Based on our speed and the fact we have a shorter pit stop time than some of our rivals, we can feel positive about tomorrow.”

The second one-hour GT race will be held at 11:30am tomorrow (1:30pm Eastern time).