Russell Ingall finishes second on debut for SBR. Caltex Havoline Ford driver Russell Ingall finished second on debut for Stone Brothers Racing in the opening race of the Netspace V8 Supercar Showdown at the Foster's Australian Formula One Grand...
Russell Ingall finishes second on debut for SBR.
Caltex Havoline Ford driver Russell Ingall finished second on debut for Stone Brothers Racing in the opening race of the Netspace V8 Supercar Showdown at the Foster's Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne today.
Ingall, who lives on the Gold Coast, started fourth and survived a first corner incident, which claimed several drivers.
He was running fourth until lap five when second-placed Mark Skaife slid off the track at the final corner and ended up in the gravel trap.
Ingall took it easy for a couple of laps and then set about hounding Steve Richards for second place.
A lap from home Ingall's pressure paid off and Richards slid wide to allow 'the Enforcer' into second spot behind Jason Bright.
Ingall's Stone Brothers Racing teammate Marcos Ambrose had a race he would rather forget in his Pirtek Falcon after developing an misfire and being turned around by Rick Kelly on lap eight.
Ambrose started 14th for the first race after a minor electrical problem, which allowed him to complete just one lap in qualifying yesterday.
Ingall had great pleasure in returning to the SBR garage with a half-filled bottle of champagne for his team - the other half was sprayed on the podium.
"That was a solid start for the Caltex Havoline team, but we are not losing sight of the big picture," said Ingall.
"The championship starts in a couple of weeks and we are trying as many things as possible this weekend.
"I had a drama at a couple of spots, but overall the car is very comfortable and physically easy for me to drive as a result.
"It would be great if we could continue the form through the weekend and into Adelaide in a couple of weeks time.
"The Stone Brothers team has given me a pretty good car and we believe we have a solid base to build on."
Ambrose remained positive about the weekend, despite his problems today.
"It was the best start I have made in the Pirtek Falcon," said Ambrose.
"With the incident at the first corner I was forced wide on to the grass to miss everything and we still managed to get up into 10th.
"After about three laps I started to develop a misfire and it was costing us a lot of time.
"The engine 'burbled' in front of Kelly, but he probably should have still avoided hitting me. After Kelly turned me around I just stroked it home.
"It is important for us to be out there motoring around and collecting as much data as possible.
"The car was handling well and we made some good progress, but unfortunately we have our work cut out for us tomorrow.
"I am just pleased this is a non-points weekend."
There is a 12-lap race tomorrow at 3.25pm and a 10-lapper on Sunday morning at 10.37am.