V8SAD: Mark McNally Winton Saturday notes

BEST YET AS McNALLY STORMS TO FOURTH Mark McNally posted his best result to date in his short Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series career when he finished fourth in the opening race at Victoria's Winton Raceway today for Round 3 of the Series. The day...

BEST YET AS McNALLY STORMS TO FOURTH

Mark McNally posted his best result to date in his short Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series career when he finished fourth in the opening race at Victoria's Winton Raceway today for Round 3 of the Series.

The day started well for Mark when he qualified fifth to set him up for his best day to date in the Series.

"I was pretty happy with qualifying, to go out there on tyres that had already been scrubbed and to produce a 1:25.2, my best ever lap time at Winton, was a good start," Mark said.

"The car was feeling good when I came in for my second set of tyres and we were aiming for lap three to be my best.

"I punched out a 1:25.3 on my second lap but came across traffic which ruined that opportunity.

"My engineer laid it down that it was next lap or never to get the best out of the tyres and I responded with a time of 1:25.0, just .2 off pole position, which put me fifth on the grid.

"It was really good because that was a bit of a test and I was able to deliver, which was confidence building.

"I have taken a bit of a different approach this weekend where I have tried to relieve some of the pressure that I have carried before.

"It was satisfying because I was able to show today some of my true ability for the first time.

Mark's form continued into Race 1 where it almost turned into a DNF when he hit oil dropped by Michael Caruso.

"I got a reasonable start in the race," he said.

"I pulled along-side Caruso, who was next to me, but Jonathon Webb who was in front had a bad start, so as I moved over to pass him Caruso was able to get ahead.

"It was good to stay with the front guys at the start but after about four laps when their set-ups came on, and mine did not come on quite as well, I got a bit out of shape and lost some time, then later that lap I hit a ripple strip that cost me time.

"I checked my position and I had a good gap on sixth so decided to settle a little and just try to chip away at Caruso fourth.

"Caruso dropped heaps of oil at the end of the back straight late in the race and I headed straight off the track, gathered it up and came back on the next turn.

"I thought that I would lose a heap of positions but all the guys behind went off the track too so I retained my place.

"On the re-start I got past Caruso as he suffered engine problems and was able to race the final lap with the front three to the finish.

"We need to do a bit of work for tomorrow, especially to try and get the brake temperature up.

"It is great that it is all starting to come together now; I really want to thank our sponsors for their ongoing support, even when things have been tough.

"Tomorrow is another day and, if all goes well, I may end up on the podium at the end of the day," he said.

Mark will line up on grid six for tomorrow morning's reverse-top-10 race which will be followed by the final 24-lap race.

-credit: mm

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Series CAMS
Drivers Michael Caruso , Jonathon Webb , Mark McNally