IRWIN Racing heads to the friendly confines of Winton Motor Raceway this weekend for the penultimate event of the 2012 V8 Supercars Championship.
Holdsworth climbed from 10th to eighth in the championship standings and heads to what was his former test track in central Victoria. The last outing for Holdsworth netted him a second place finish in the Saturday race at Winton. With the improved pace in the IRWIN Ford he is aiming to keep his late season form heading to the twisty rural circuit.
Winton is the home test track to over half of the field, but with the race weekend moving from the cooler months of the year to what is expected to be warm and sunny conditions, coming to grips with the hotter track temperatures is sure to keep all the teams on their toes.
This weekend's racing also sees the series move back to its more traditional race weekend format with a 140km race on the Saturday and a 200km race on the Sunday. All teams must use both the hard and softer Dunlop race tyres in each race.
What Lee Holdsworth had to say:
"It would be great to get back on the Winton podium as it's a track I know very well," said Holdsworth.
"The IRWIN car had good speed in Abu Dhabi and if we can keep moving our way forward and again have a good run in qualifying we should be able to finish right up there. The main thing is to get some good championship points. We are fighting back, we have come from 10th to eighth over the Abu Dhabi weekend.
"It is a difficult time of the year because if it is hot it can be very difficult to set the car up. Even for the guys that test there it remains a tough place to get the best out of the car because the track can change throughout the day.
"After all the endurance racing and then the sprints in the Middle East, it is good to get back to the regular format with just the single driver in the car. It's good to get back into the longer single races and have pit stops and strategy come back into play which creates more variables in the final results.
"It's always good to get back out to Winton; it's an awesome little track with plenty of enthusiastic punters. The racing is always good and with the fan base being so strong it's a place I enjoy racing at."
What race engineer Brad Wischusen had to say:
"In terms of tyre wear we are going to see a lot more tyre degradation as Winton is always tough on the rubber, plus we add in the expected higher track temperatures than what we have had in the past," said Wisuschen.
"Since Sandown we have got on top of our set-up with the IRWIN Ford and that's starting to translate into better results. Getting the temperature into the tyres in qualifying had been a challenge and we showed in Abu Dhabi that we are heading in the right direction with that. We are pretty confident that we can again prove that at Winton."