Trans Am – Mid Season Review
The National Trans Am Series has stamped its authority as one of the Australia’s leading national categories in 2023, with a thrilling first half of the season summed up by record breaking finishes, rising stars, big crashes and nail-biting qualifying sessions throughout.
With a two-month break between rounds, competitors will now have the opportunity to sit back, take a breather and reset before taking the track at the Queensland Raceway in August.
But before the story continues, let’s use this opportunity to journey back to the first three chapters of an incredible tale so far.
The series brought the heat to one of Australia’s coldest locations when the Symmonds Plains Raceway kicked off the season’s action.
Current series leader, James Moffat had a perfect start to the season after clean sweeping all three AWC Race Tasmania races, which included a shortened second race after a huge shunt between All American Driveline’s Ben Grice and James Simpson’s Cairns Plaza Hotel backed Dodge Challenger.
Competitors then made their way a mere 700 kilometres north to the world-famous Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit in May for the second round of the season, where arguably some of the year’s best racing unfolded.
Moffat was primed to repeat his first-round efforts until a mechanical black flag dropped him down the grid in race one, opening the door for a first race win in 2023 for the experienced Owen Kelly.
Kelly was unable to score another race win for the weekend after a race two incident, promoting a red-hot Nash Morris to the lead, who was making his first appearance of the season
Morris put on a defensive masterclass to storm to victory in race two, before going back-to-back in what was the closest finishes in series history with Moffat in race three.
The third round saw the series move from a fast, flowing circuit to a tight and twisty Winton Motor Raceway in June, providing a new challenge for all competitors alike.
AWC GRM’s Lochie Dalton was in a league of his own during the weekend, converting a well-deserved pole position into his first series race win on Saturday afternoon.
The New South Welshman clearly enjoyed the taste of victory as he made it three wins out of three for the weekend to apply the pressure on series leader Moffat ahead of the next round.
With just four rounds remaining in 2023, only nine points separate the two GRM teammates at the top of the standings with round one winner Moffat leading the in-form Dalton.
Tom Hayman’s consistency has rewarded him with third in the standings after Winton, but has the likes of Josh Webster and Owen Kelly on his tail.
The fourth round of the National Trans Am Series will take place at the Queensland raceway on 11-13 August.
Standings – Top 10
James Moffat – 549 points
Lochie Dalton – 540
Tom Hayman – 480
Josh Webster – 475
Owen Kelly – 474
John Holinger – 458
Craig Scutella – 455
Cody Gillis – 441
Brett Holdsworth – 434
Elliot Barbour – 432
Results so far
Round 1 – Symmons Plains Raceway
Pole Position: Ben Grice
Race 1: James Moffat
Race 2: James Moffat
Race 3: James Moffat
Round winner: James Moffat
Round 2 – Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit
Qualifying: James Moffat
Race 1: Owen Kelly
Race 2: Nash Morris
Race 3: Nash Morris
Round winner: Nash Morris
Round 3 – Winton Motor Raceway
Pole Position: Lochie Dalton
Race 1: Lochie Dalton
Race 2: Lochie Dalton
Race 3: Lochie Dalton
Round winner: Lochie Dalton
Round 4 – Queensland Raceway 11-13 August
Round 5 – Sandown Raceway 8-10 September
Round 6 – Sydney Motorsport Park 3-5 November
Round 7 – Mount Panorama Motor Racing Circuit 10-12 November