KELLY BROTHERS LOOK TO REPEAT WINTON FORM
Jack Daniel’s Racing is aiming to bounce back from a tough event in Perth when it races at its test track at Winton Motor Raceway in rural Victoria this weekend.
Following a breakout event in New Zealand in April that saw the Kelly Racing operation score it’s first race win, first double podium, first front row lockout and second pole position, Jack Daniel’s Racing drivers Todd and Rick Kelly endured a tough event in Western Australia earlier this month.
Having tested their Jack Daniel’s Commodores at the 3.0-kilometre Winton circuit last Tuesday, the Kelly brothers are confident of a return to form and a repeat of the team’s 2010 speed at the tight and twisting circuit.
Last year’s Winton event saw Todd Kelly make Saturday’s Top 10 Shootout, with Rick Kelly then smashing the qualifying lap record with Kelly Racing’s first ever pole position on Sunday.
The pole time set by Rick Kelly’s #15 Jack Daniel’s Commodore last year was achieved on Dunlop’s soft compound tyre, which will be used exclusively in qualifying and racing on both Saturday and Sunday this weekend.
Another element that could be a factor at Winton this weekend is the weather, with cold conditions expected at the circuit that lies at the foot of the Victorian ski fields.
Should rain descend on Winton this weekend it will not faze Jack Daniel’s Racing, with podium results coming in wet conditions at last year’s Sydney Telstra 500 (Rick Kelly third on Saturday), this year’s Clipsal 500 (Rick Kelly second on Sunday) and the recent ITM400 Hamilton (Rick Kelly first and Todd Kelly third on Saturday).
JACK DANIEL’S RACING QUOTEBOARD:
RICK KELLY - #15 Jack Daniel’s Holden Commodore
“Our pole position and lap record at Winton last year was a real highlight for me and the whole team,” said Rick Kelly.
“Our soft tyre pace in the races is still where we lack the most. I think our hard compound tyre pace is generally right on the money or pretty close to it.
“As soon as we bolt soft tyres on, our tyre wear is worse than others and we tend to fall back as the race goes on.
“At our test day at Winton last week we spent a lot of time working on our soft tyre set-up, not only to go fast but also to look after our tyres.
“We made a lot of improvement as far as that goes and this weekend is going to be a really good test for us to see how we fair compared to the other teams.”
TODD KELLY - #7 Jack Daniel’s Holden Commodore
“We tested at Winton last week and you don't normally get the chance to test at a track just before a race,” said Todd Kelly.
“It's been handy to spend the day there so close to the race. We ended up trying some different things on the Jack Daniel’s Commodores and hopefully that gives us a bit of a head start when it comes to the race weekend.
“Winton is a place that can be hard to read in terms of how much it changes with the track conditions, the weather and what time of day we are on-track for qualifying or racing.
“We are potentially going to have four or five set-ups to choose from depending on what all those conditions are at any given time.
“It's going to be tough to read the conditions and translate that into the car set-up. Hopefully we've got enough information from our test day to make the race weekend run smoothly.”