Moffat bags two more top 10s at Barbagallo Raceway

The results makes it seven top 10 finishes for the Altima in the Japanese car company's return to top-level Australian Touring Car racing this year.

Norton 360 Racing's James Moffat has produced another two top 10 finishes at Barbagallo Raceway today, giving him a perfect score of top 10 results at the West Australian circuit this weekend.

Moffat, driver of the #360 factory Nissan Altima, finished 10th and eighth in the two 100km races today, adding to his 10th place in yesterday's 60/60 Super Sprint race.

James Moffat, Team Norton Nissan
James Moffat, Team Norton Nissan

Photo by: Edge Photographics

The results makes it seven top 10 finishes for the Altima in the Japanese car company's return to top-level Australian Touring Car racing this year.

Moffat's great results has also elevated him into 13th place in the championship.

Moffat's Norton 360 Racing team-mate Michael Caruso was not as fortunate after suffering from two pit lane mishaps in today's races, leaving him to record a 25th and 'DNF' in the two races.

For the Jack Daniel's Racing Altimas, Todd and Rick Kelly were encouraged by their race pace, but rued lowly qualifying positions that ultimately cost them better results.

Both drivers finished higher than their respective qualifying places, with Rick making up a huge 10 places in Race 11 (today's first race).

Rick's consistency has seen him remain in a competitive 16th place in the championship race.

Both of today's races were won by three-time V8 Supercars champion Jamie Whincup.

History will be made in the next event of the V8 Supercars Championship when the 28 cars head to Austin, Texas, for the Austin 400 at the Circuit of the Americas venue in two weeks time. It will be the first V8 Supercars race in North America.

James Moffat – #360 Norton 360 Nissan Altima: "It has been a good weekend. To come away with three top 10s has made for a really solid event," Moffat said.

"The car was very good in all the races It's a great race car, and we know where our weaknesses are, and the team is working as hard and as fast as they can to improve them.

"This is by far the best result that I've had here at Barbagallo. It's one of the hardest places on tyres, which shows how well the chassis is performing.

"I had a good battle with GT (Garth Tander) in both of today's races, so to be racing against a former series champion and someone of his calibre is very encouraging.

"I think with the ongoing development of the car, I see no reason why we can't be more of a threat up the front of the field. You don't want to count your chickens too early, but the signs are good."

Rick Kelly – #15 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima: “We just had a fair bit of drama getting the pace out of the car in qualifying. In the races we made a huge step forward compared to the rest of the year with the race pace and the car handling and it was really the most comfortable I’ve been in the car in the race,” Rick Kelly said.

“It’s just too difficult to make up that many positions. We managed to move from 26th to 16th which was great and a few more laps would have been more again, and the same in the second race.

“We continued to move forward, but everything was stacked against us, the safety car didn’t go our way, we got ran off the track a couple of times and unfortunately the way the pits payed out put us a fair way back.

“We can take a lot from that, but we need to get on top of getting a little bit more out of the car and myself in qualifying and then we’ll start to see some really good results.”

Todd Kelly – #7 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima: “We changed the car a little bit for the last race and it didn’t really help the issues that we were having and I had a puncture early on in the race, so that put me a lap down and we just dead set ran out of tyres,” Todd Kelly said.

“We were still hanging on to the back of the field and attacked and passed guys at the end who had quite a bit better quality tyre on, so there is a lot of potential there, we just need to have a good clean weekend and get it out of the car.

“It wasn’t the best result, but certainly the car has got a fair bit left in it.”

Michael Caruso – #36 Norton 360 Nissan Altima: "We had a strong car this weekend and that showed in Saturday's race," Caruso said.

"Once the pit stop element came into the attack, it cost us good result.

"(James) Moffat did a fantastic job all weekend, running inside the top 10, and that's where the capability of our car is at. We were running there in the last race, but a small mistake cost us the result.

"In such a short period between here and Texas, we need to access because there's four compulsory pit stops there and we'll need to improve."

Norton 360 Racing

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About this article
Series V8SUPERCARS
Article type Race reports
Tags v8supercars, kelly, moffat, caruso, perth, barbagallo

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Cesar RamosBSSZandvoortCesar Ramos06/07/2014 06:40

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