V8 Supercars – Ford Performance Racing – Townsville Race 15 Wrap‏

July 10, 2011

V8 Supercars

EVENT NAME: Sucrogen Townsville 400
LOCATION: Townsville, Queensland
DATE: Sunday, 10 July
RACE FORMAT: 72 laps – Dunlop hard & 1 x set soft compound tyres


Mark Winterbottom just missed his fifth-straight pole when he claimed second on the grid
Will Davison was again not far behind and set the fifth-fastest time for a slot on row three
Paul Dumbrell endured a tough session where a mixture of missed opportunity on his first two runs as well as a starter motor issue meant he did not set a competitive lap time. He ended the session 28th
– Winterbottom again made a rapid start and led into turn one despite cars around him being on the faster soft-compound tyre
– Davison and Dumbrell also showed the factory Falcon is quick off the line and both made up significant ground at the start
– Winterbottom led until lap two when he was passed by Craig Lowndes on soft tyres
– He then settled into second place and would not drop lower than third before he made his first scheduled pit stop
– Davison stayed in the top five for most of the opening stint and pitted from third
– Dumbrell moved into the top 20 and his strategy saw him stay on track longer than many of his rivals
– He eventually pitted from second place at the end of lap 26
– Winterbottom pitted at the end of lap 21 and a slick stop saw him retain his top three spot once the rest of the field had stopped
– Davison also benefited from quick pit work by his crew and was sixth after the first round of stops
– The safety car was deployed on lap 44 due to debris on the circuit which bunched the field
– Almost every driver pitted to fit soft tyres which would have to last all the way to the finish
– Winterbottom rejoined second, though Davison had to queue behind his team-mate and dropped a few spots to ninth
– Dumbrell also pitted and was 17th on the restart three laps later
– Davison was looking to regain his lost ground until he was spun around at the final turn by Jason Bright at the end of lap 47
– The spin dropped Davison to 23rd and earned Bright a penalty
– Davison gained a number of places over the closing laps to finish 18th at the chequered flag
– Dumbrell put on a charge after he took on soft tyres and was as high as sixth before his tyres faded in the closing laps
– He still managed to finish 10th despite starting from last on the grid after his qualifying issues
– Winterbottom managed his tyres well across the long final stint despite being passed by series leader Jamie Whincup for second on lap 52
– He then drove the final 20 laps in a comfortable third place to score the team’s second podium for the weekend
– Winterbottom has jumped five places to fifth in the driver standings, one point and place ahead of Davison
Mark Winterbottom – #95 Orrcon Steel FPR Falcon
Qualifying: 2nd – 1m13.17s
Race 15: 3rd – Fastest lap: 1m14.23s
Championship position: 5th – 1201 points
“It is always a good day when you finish on the podium but it would have been nice to finish higher. We still have a bit more work to do on the soft tyre to improve our pace to our key rivals, though all-in-all it was a solid weekend. We put the car on the front row both days so qualifying is sorted, but we need to make it better over a complete race distance and we have good data from this weekend so that will help us achieve that. The team is building momentum and we are starting to look forward to the two enduros where we should be strong.”
Will Davison – #6 Trading Post FPR Falcon
 5th – 1m13.25s
Race 15: 18th – Fastest lap: 1m14.08s
Championship position: 6th – 1200 points
“The car was not quite as good as yesterday but we were still competitive.  The pit stop under the safety car hurt me as I had to queue behind Frosty (Winterbottom) and that cost me three positions and then on the restart Jason Bright spun me around and that was that. We have been quite competitive this weekend which is a good sign and we are certainly making some headway but we are still not good enough on soft tyres. Today was a missed opportunity and we have been on for a top five so it is upsetting when things you can’t control take away a good result.”
Paul Dumbrell – #55 The Bottle-O FPR Falcon
 28th – 1m20.77s
Race 15: 10th – Fastest lap: 1m13.82s
Championship position: 16th – 763 points
“What a day. Qualifying turned into a disaster which meant we were unable to set a competitive time. Starting last was far from ideal but it meant we could be very aggressive with our strategy. We played the long game and after a great start we regularly picked off cars. We pitted from second at our first stop and then put soft tyres on when the safety car came out like everyone else. I pushed as hard as I could and we gained a lot of ground. We got as high as sixth and although I knew it might be hard to hold off some of the guys behind us in the closing laps, the team can be pleased with our recovery effort.”
Tim Edwards – FPR Team Principal
“The team put in another good effort today to claim its second podium finish in as many days. Qualifying was again promising, except for Paul’s issue, and all three drivers made a great start. Mark managed his tyres well late in the race to come home in a comfortable third place which is reward for two days of good racing. Will looked set for another high finish until he was punted from behind and from there his day was done which is a shame as he deserved more. Paul drove the race of his life and used the strategy to good effect. He was very quick on the soft tyres and did well to come from last to 10th. We still have work to do to be more competitive but we made another step forward this weekend so we know we are headed in the right direction.”
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