MCNALLY FIGHTS HIS WAY TO FUJITSU V8 6TH PLACE
In one of his best performances to date Mark McNally caught, fought and beat some tough rivals as he marched to 6th place in the opening Fujitsu V8 Supercar race at Sydney's Oran Park Raceway today.
After qualifying 7th yesterday, Mark got off the line well before contact in turn 3 pushed him wide and cost him a few places.
"The car was quite different from qualifying as the circuit temperature was so hot," Mark said.
"It had a little under-steer and a lot of rear grip which is the way I like it."
Once the race got going mark settled into a good rhythm and was chasing David Sieders and Tim Slade while David Reynolds had him under pressure from behind.
"It was a great battle out there, we were all fighting for a better position and it was extremely enjoyable."
After gaining places early Mark lost 7th place to David Reynolds but would not give up easily.
"I was able to pressure my way past Reynolds when he attempted to pass Sieders," Mark said.
"And then I got past Sieders and was able to pull away with clear track in front."
It wasn't all easy going from there as it was so hot in the car, possibly up to 50 degrees, that Mark's cool suit ran out of cold fluid about ten laps from the end.
"I was able to do the same lap times as the leaders at that late stage of the race which gives me confidence tomorrow.
"I need to clean up my opening laps in order to get on the back of the front guys and if I can do that then I think I can stay with them."
Mark will run a slightly different sway bar setting in the opening laps in order to run with the front guys before switching it back once the race is underway.
The race was not without its problems for Mark who did the final few laps with an engine problem.
The BJR team will change his engine for tomorrow's race to ensure Mark has the best chance of a good result.
"We are still trying to get into the top ten for the series and a top five result this weekend will go a long way towards that," he said.
Race 2 of the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series is scheduled for 1.25pm tomorrow.