Gold Coast: FPR Saturday report

MARK WINTERBOTTOM THIRD IN OPENING GOLD COAST STREET RACE October 21, 2006 - Ford Credit FPR Falcon driver Mark Winterbottom has finished third in today's first of three V8 Supercar races held on the streets of Surfers Paradise. CAT FPR Falcon...

MARK WINTERBOTTOM THIRD IN OPENING GOLD COAST STREET RACE

October 21, 2006 - Ford Credit FPR Falcon driver Mark Winterbottom has finished third in today's first of three V8 Supercar races held on the streets of Surfers Paradise.

CAT FPR Falcon driver Jason Bright finished 9th in this opening 22 lap sprint race, the 33 year old driver not feeling as comfortable with his car as he had been during qualifying.

Winterbottom held on to Pole setter Todd Kelly and Garth Tander for the entire 100 kilometre race, benefitting from a super-fast pit stop on the 9th lap to consolidate his place in the top three by the chequered flag. On the way to his first podium finish at the Surfers Paradise Street Circuit, the 25 year old driver also set the fastest lap of the race.

The race was won by Todd Kelly ahead of Tander, with Winterbotttom the first of the Ford powered finishers ahead of Jason Richards and Bathurst 1000 winner Craig Lowndes.

Despite forecasts of rain for the Surfers Paradise area during the afternoon, the race remained dry throughout despite a major drop in ambient temperature and heavy cloud cover.

Earlier in the day, both FPR Falcon drivers took part in the top ten shoot-out to determine the top ten starting positions for today's race. Winterbottom set the 3rd fastest lap while a potential pole position time by Bright was spoiled by a locked wheel under heavy braking, the 33 year old settling at 8th fastest.

#5 Mark Winterbottom - "I was side by side with Craig Lowndes and made it past him at the first chicane to hold on to third position and begin the chase of Tander and Kelly. We managed to break away from the rest of the field but I couldn't get any closer than I did, even with the fastest lap of the race. We have some more speed to find with the car but the highlight was our brakes, which were the best so far this season.

#6 Jason Bright - "We seemed to have gone the wrong way with our race set up for that one. I had some understeer issues along with some braking problems during the late stages of the race. We will head towards the set-up that we qualified with to give us some more pace tomorrow."

FPR Motorsport Director, Tim Edwards - "A strong performance by the team today and a very impressive drive by Mark to take the fastest lap of the race and to be the fastest Ford driver. Starting from 8th at a circuit like this was never going to be easy for Jason to make up ground but his car speed was very good, so we are looking forward to our two races tomorrow."

FPR returns to the track at 11:05am and 3:55pm for the two remaining races of the round.

At the time of writing a post race investigation was underway involving drivers Craig Lowndes, James Courtney and Jason Richards, which may affect Jason Bright's result.

-credit: fpr

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers James Courtney , Garth Tander , Jason Bright , Craig Lowndes , Jason Richards , Todd Kelly , Mark Winterbottom , Tim Edwards