Family-run Canberra motorsport outfit, Cameron Hill Racing is on a determined recovery mission for tomorrow morning’s final Toyota 86 Series race at the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, after two character-building events at the Mountain today.
Following his pole position effort aboard the usedtrucks.sydney/National Capital Toyota/Anytime Fitness Toyota 86 yesterday, 20-year-old Hill won this morning’s opening race by more than three seconds, only to be excluded due to a crew member accidentally touching the car while it was under post-race parc ferme conditions.
Starting at the rear of the field in Race 2, Hill made up several positions by the first corner but was caught as the innocent victim in a multi-car collision on Mountain Straight.
In a bitter blow for the team, Hill’s 86 sustained significant front-end damage and the crew have been faced with an uphill battle to return the car to the track tomorrow.
While understandably shattered with today’s proceedings, Hill is proud of the fighting spirit shown by his team.
“Today was an emotional rollercoaster – to experience the elation of winning a race at Bathurst was so satisfying, and then to find out I had been excluded was devastating,” Hill said.
“We’re a small family team, and the mistake of touching the car in parc ferme conditions was an innocent error made by one of my crew who volunteers his time on race weekends.
“In saying that, the rules clearly state that no-one is allowed to touch the car, so we accept we did the wrong thing.
“In Race 2, I was determined to make up as many places as I could. On Mountain Straight, there was a big pileup and by the time I arrived on the scene I had nowhere to go. I was able to continue for a few laps but I decided to retire the car to avoid the risk of further damage.
“Fortunately none of the essential components have been affected, but there is a lot of cosmetic damage and all the crew will be working long into the night to ensure I have a competitive package for tomorrow.
“Throughout my racing journey, we’ve endured setbacks but we’ve always overcome them and this weekend is no exception. I’m very lucky to have such a supportive team, family and sponsor group, and I look forward to rewarding them with a spectacular fightback tomorrow,” Hill concluded.