SBR STAGE FIGHTBACK AT SANDOWN
Stone Brothers Racing (SBR) finished the final 200km race at Sandown International Raceway with two of its Falcons in the top ten this afternoon.
Starting the race in fifth place, Shane van Gisbergen was first home for SBR, crossing the line in sixth place, which was a remarkable recovery considering an unscheduled pit stop halfway through the 65-lap race sent him back to 23rd place. Van Gisbergen pushed his #9 SP Tools Falcon hard, and with the help of a Safety Car period made up some lost ground, but by then the leaders had pulled an unattainable lead and van Gisbergen had to settle for sixth.
Hot on Van Gisbergen’s heels was #47 Lucky 7 Racing’s Tim Slade who qualified for today’s race in ninth place. Like most drivers in today’s warmer and dry conditions, Slade battled understeer in the early stages of the race but with positive changes made in each pit stop, Slade soon got back up to a competitive speed. Battling Lee Holdsworth for most of the race, Slade eventually passed him on the last lap to cross the line in seventh place.
Alex Davison in the #4 IRWIN Racing Falcon endured a tough qualifying session, leaving him to start the race from back in 20th place. Undeterred, Davison put his head down and steadily climbed his way through the field up in to 12th place before a careless and wayward Russell Ingal tagged him with 15 laps to go. Falling back to 17th, Davison held his composure to climb back two places to finish 15th.
The SBR Falcons will now return to home base in Yatala for a refresh, before heading south again for their final races of the season at the Sydney 500 at Homebush in two weeks.
Shane van Gisbergen – Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9
“The car was a real handful at the start of the race so we pitted early to make some changes and take on some new tyres which improved things dramatically. After each stop the car got better and eventually we had the pace to make some ground but we were too far back from the leaders in the last stint to make an impact.”
Tim Slade – Driver, Lucky 7 Racing Car #47
“Apart from my stall in the pit stop it was a pretty good day. My mistake let (Lee) Holdsworth hold his place who I should have jumped in that stop. The pace wasn’t quite there on fresh rubber but over the distance we were there. I made a great start and had a pretty drama free race so overall it was a good weekend for us.”
Alex Davison – Driver, IRWIN Racing Car #4
“I felt I drove a good race today, we were struggling with a lot of understeer, which made overtaking difficult, but we still came through the pack and it would have been a good recovery. It’s disappointing (the incident with Ingal) because when you look at the results, the people that I am battling against (for a place in the championship top ten) I was in front of. The last few race meetings have been so disappointing but we're still in ninth going into Homebush.”