Oran Park: WPS Racing Saturday report

WILSON ELEVENTH IN ORAN PARK OPENER WPS Racing's Max Wilson was on the move during the opening race at round seven of the 2006 V8 Supercar Championship Series contested at Sydney's Oran Park Raceway this afternoon. Earlier in the day Wilson...

WILSON ELEVENTH IN ORAN PARK OPENER

WPS Racing's Max Wilson was on the move during the opening race at round seven of the 2006 V8 Supercar Championship Series contested at Sydney's Oran Park Raceway this afternoon.

Earlier in the day Wilson and his WPS Racing team-mate Jason Bargwanna qualified 18th and 19th respectively for today's opening 38-lap encounter.

Bargwanna made the better start of the pair to move up three positions to be just ahead of Wilson at the end of the opening lap.

Wilson was the first of the pair to pit on lap 9. Another rapid tyre change by the WPS crew enabled him to be inside the top 15 by mid race distance. Bargwanna wasn't so fortunate as he encountered traffic in the pit lane at the completion of his stop and lost several crucial seconds, and positions, as a consequence.

As the race continued the pair slowly clawed their way towards the top ten with Wilson crossing the line in 11th position and Bargwanna 15th.

Todd Kelly claimed the victory ahead of Craig Lowndes and Rick Kelly. Early race leader Mark Skaife stopped with gearbox problems on lap 15 which resulted in the only safety car period of the race.

Tomorrow will feature a pair of 53-lap races for the V8 Supercars. The first will be the final in the controversial reverse-grid format due to start at 11:20am followed by the final race of the round at 3:30pm.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY----.

Max Wilson -- #8 WPS Racing Falcon
"It goes to show what can happen when you are able to have a good, clean race and get to the finish without too many problems," said Wilson.

"We still have a fair bit of work to do before I would comfortably say that we've got the package we want but we're getting closer.

"One of the biggest issues we're faced with is the tyre degradation on the longer runs, if we can get on top of this for tomorrow I'm confident we'll be able to finish in the top ten."

Jason Bargwanna - #10 WPS Racing Falcon
"We're still working to get inside the setup 'window' for the car," said Bargwanna.

"The car felt slightly more balanced during today's race but we've still got a bit of work to do before we are where we want to be.

"If I can get a clean run in tomorrow's two races and look after the rear tyres I think we'll be in a good position to finish around the top ten."

Mark Larkham -- Team Principal
"Both drivers did a particularly good job today, we've got some new bits in both the cars which need a bit of sorting out and we're slowly getting on top of them this weekend," said Larkham.

"Bargs was particularly unlucky with traffic in his pit stop, I'd say he lost four or five spots as a result of that.

"We had cars there today that were just outside the top ten. I think if we can keep our nose clean in tomorrow's two races we'll be walk away some top ten finishes which is our target for the weekend."

-credit: wps racing

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Max Wilson , Rick Kelly , Mark Skaife , Mark Larkham , Craig Lowndes , Jason Bargwanna , Todd Kelly