ROLLINSON IMPRESSES WITH QUEENSLAND RESULT Auckland driver Gene Rollinson has again raised eyebrows across the Tasman with a strong performance at Queensland International Raceway last weekend in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar ...
ROLLINSON IMPRESSES WITH QUEENSLAND RESULT
Auckland driver Gene Rollinson has again raised eyebrows across the Tasman with a strong performance at Queensland International Raceway last weekend in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship.
Stepping back into the Race Image Motorsport Falcon for the first time since Adelaide, and having never been to the 3.12km Ipswich circuit before, Rollinson finished a creditable 11th overall for the round, even breaking into the top-ten in race two.
"It's fantastic to be back in the series" Rollinson remarked. "I haven't sat in the Supercar for 5 months, so it was going to be tough re-entering while the other drivers have had a few rounds under their belts."
Teaming up again with Race Image Motorsport, whom he drove for at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide earlier this year, Rollinson spent the Friday practice sessions reacquainting himself with the ex-DJR Ford Falcon and also learning the circuit.
"The track is very deceiving," he commented after his first run. "It looks simple on paper and in layout--. it's anything but! It will be a case of getting the simple things right."
Still coming to grips with the track and car, Rollinson qualified in 20th position. However a good start and ability to stay out of trouble saw him make up 7 positions to finish 12th in race one, a race which was marred by a number of safety car periods. Starting where he finished, Rollinson again had a solid run in race two, making up 2 places to finish in 10th spot.
"I'm happy to make it into the top ten, this is such a tough competitive class," he said afterwards. "We changed the car overnight and I struggled with oversteer on older tyres, so we'll go over the data and make a few adjustments for the final race".
Starting from 10th position in the final race of the weekend, the 23-year-old ran with the front bunch for most of the race, eventually finishing in 11th place.
"I'm happy with that," he reflected afterwards. "We didn't get the balance of the car exactly right, and we were a little down on horsepower compared to a lot of others, but ending up 11th overall is great, especially with a clean straight car! When you look at the calibre of other drivers in the series, such as ex-main game drivers and former championship winners in Supercars, Porsche and F3, it puts the achievement into perspective."
With the possibility of generating further sponsorship over the next few weeks, Rollinson and Race Image Motorsport will again team up at Winton Raceway from the 1st to 3rd of August.
"Winton was where I made my V8 Supercar debut 12 months ago," Rollinson said.
"I had never driven a Supercar before and finished 9th overall for the round. It's going to be good to know the track, but the best thing will be the consistent seat-time of racing at two rounds in a row, which I haven't had before. You need to be driving these cars all of the time to know how to get the most out of them. I've only driven at 3 Supercar rounds now, each at 5-6 months apart, so I'm looking forward to it."
"Hopefully we can impress a few people and put together a package to run for the rest of the season.'