VAN GISBERGEN FINISHES STRONG AT SEASON END SP Tools Racing's Shane van Gisbergen came within half a lap of his first race win today but a gamble with fuel saw him lucky to finish in third, after just managing to crawl his way across the finish...
VAN GISBERGEN FINISHES STRONG AT SEASON END
SP Tools Racing's Shane van Gisbergen came within half a lap of his first race win today but a gamble with fuel saw him lucky to finish in third, after just managing to crawl his way across the finish line on the last lap. A safety car period put van Gisbergen in the lead with 18 laps to go and Lee Holdsworth behind on fresh tyres, but it was on the final lap that the SP Tools Falcon started to slow after switching to reserve to make the full 250km race distance.
Today's podium finish at the Sydney Telstra 500 totals ten for van Gisbergen this season and marks the beginning of the 21-year-old's bright future in the sport.
Wilson Security Racing's Tim Slade's race was over on lap 58 when ex-teammate Russell Ingall pulled a desperate move to pass forcing the #47 Falcon into the wall at Turn 1. Slade managed to limp his way back to Pit Lane after the heavy contact that caused the final safety car period of the race.
A rear hub failure put Alex Davison out of the running early when he reported he had no brakes in the IRWIN Racing Falcon. Davison managed to make it back to garage where the SBR crew worked to fix the problem enabling him to re-enter and finish the race 15 laps down.
Shane van Gisbergen - Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9
"I just have so many emotions running through me at the moment, it was hard to lose that race win but we rolled the dice and ended up on the podium. It's devastating when you're so close to your first win and I feel for the guys but to finish the season strong is what we were after this weekend.
"I was trying pretty hard at the end there to save fuel and when the Safety Car was out I felt like almost hitting it to bump draft it! It was pretty tough, I flicked over to reserve with two and a half laps to go and when I first came onto the straight on the final lap I felt it cough so was trying to hit the curbs extra hard to shake the fuel around but coming out of turn 8 I just started slowing down. I kept flicking it from reserve to main to try and make it and we just did."
Alex Davison - Driver, IRWIN Racing Car #4
"We were going quite well, the car felt good and the three SBR cars were nose to tail there for a while until one of the rear hubs failed and the brake pedal went to the floor. We had no brakes so that was a bit sketchy for a while but I got but to the pits and the boys fixed it and made it back out there to finish.
"There are a lot of positives we can take out of this weekend, it's a good platform for 2011."
Tim Slade - Driver, Wilson Security Racing Car #47
"We have had a terrible time in the races this weekend which is so disappointing because we had a car capable of doing the job on both days. We qualified in the top ten again which was great but to walk away with two DNF's is not the way we wanted to finish the season.
"I love where I am with the team, my crew and the car, next year is only going to get better for us."