Abu Dhabi: SBR race 1 report

SBR STARTS SEASON STRONG IN THE MIDDLE EAST Stone Brothers Racing got their 2010 V8 Supercar campaign off to a great start tonight [Friday] at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, with Shane van Gisbergen and Alex Davison finishing the season ...

SBR STARTS SEASON STRONG IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Stone Brothers Racing got their 2010 V8 Supercar campaign off to a great start tonight [Friday] at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, with Shane van Gisbergen and Alex Davison finishing the season opening race both inside the top ten. The #4 and #9 FG Falcons lined up on the grid for the 43 lap race next to each other on the fourth row thanks to solid qualifying efforts from both cars. Tim Slade's engine problems in yesterday's practice session were long forgotten today with the #47 car crossing the line in 14th place.

In a day of firsts for the team IRWIN Racing's Alex Davison took part in his first V8 Supercar career shootout while SP Tools Racing's Shane van Gisbergen set his first race lap record with a time of 1:59.1140 on lap 31.

Shane van Gisbergen had another great comeback drive in tonight's feature under lights after an early race incident dropped him back to 19th position at the end of the first lap. Alex Davison was up as high as 5th until a problem with the shift cut in car #4 caused some grief at the races halfway point.

Davison battled on managing to stay inside the top ten to finish 9th. Van Gisbergen's charge through the field was rewarded with a sixth place finish while Tim Slade made steady gains throughout the entire race making up 4 spots from his starting position of 18th.

Alex Davison - Driver, IRWIN Racing Car #4

"It was great having our first shootout, although I wasn't happy with the lap it was just good to be in there.

"It's a solid result to finish inside the top ten, but we always want to go better. It was a shame we weren't able to move forward from our starting position but I had the shift cut fail on me at the races half way point which made things a lot harder.

"When it stops working it means you have to lift when you change gears and use the clutch so you lose time, it makes it hard to race with the other guys because you lose a lot of straight line speed.

"Tomorrow is about qualifying better and moving forward so we will make some changes tonight and see how we go in the second race."

Shane van Gisbergen - Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9

"The car was really good in qualifying this afternoon, we made it into the shootout but for my flying lap we had the tyre pressures mixed up a little bit and the balance of the car wasn't quite right so we didn't nail it there.

"I got a reasonable start in the race but pretty much got beaten up on the first lap. At the end of the straight I was hit from behind and I was just a bowling ball into everyone else so I ended up 19th. The car was a little bent after the incident but we still had good speed so for the rest of the race I just tried to pass as many cars as I could.

"In the last stint we really pushed it, we set the fastest lap of the race, the lap record. The car was great in that stint so I pushed on and was able to make up places to finish sixth.

"We have another shot at it in race two so if we start from the front part of the grid we should have a good go at it tomorrow."

Tim Slade - Driver, Wilson Security Racing Car #47

"It's always good to start the Championship with a solid points haul. I got a good start and stayed out of trouble, I have a small mark on the rear bar of the car from someone else but other than that the car is untouched.

"Every time we have gone out on the track we have kept moving forward, we picked up 5 spots in the race which was great. We were looking for a top 15 finish today so we are all pretty happy we got there.

"It was good to spend that amount of time in the car to get myself into a rhythm. I mucked around with the roll bars and learnt quite a bit so I feel more comfortable with the car.

"In qualifying I stuffed up my best lap and you only get two shots at a flying lap on a new set of tyres so I just didn't do a good enough job there.

"It was a great experience racing under lights, I haven't done that since my karting days, before the race I was wondering whether I would need to race with my visor up but I had it down the whole race and no issue with vision anywhere so it was quite impressive."

-source: sbr

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Alex Davison , Tim Slade , Shane van Gisbergen