RICK KELLY NARROWLY MISSES PODIUM WITH FOURTH AT WINTON Jack Daniel's Racing driver Rick Kelly has narrowly missed earning his first podium finish of the season by scoring fourth place in the second race of Event 6 in the 2010 V8 Supercar ...
RICK KELLY NARROWLY MISSES PODIUM WITH FOURTH AT WINTON
Jack Daniel's Racing driver Rick Kelly has narrowly missed earning his first podium finish of the season by scoring fourth place in the second race of Event 6 in the 2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series at Winton Motor Raceway in rural Victoria today.
Kelly, who started from pole position, scored a fourth place finish for the third time from 12 races so far this season aboard the #15 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore, also his 10th top 10 finish of the year.
The 27-year-old was beaten off the line by Jamie Whincup, and was also passed by Craig Lowndes and James Courtney in the first stint of the race as he worked to conserve his soft tyres.
In the final stint of the race a rear roll bar adjustment improved the handling of Kelly's Jack Daniel's Commodore, allowing him to gradually chase down Lee Holdsworth for third position.
Unfortunately for Kelly, several Safety Car periods delayed today's race and as a result the race distance was determined by time and ended three laps short of the original 67-lap distance.
Kelly crossed the line right on the back of Holdsworth's Commodore and missed his first podium finish of the season by a mere 0.4285 seconds.
Kelly remains in seventh place in the 2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series points standings after 12 of 26 races, just 37 points outside the top five.
It was a tough day for Todd Kelly, who after showing great speed on Saturday struggled for qualifying pace aboard his #7 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore.
Starting from 26th position, the older of the Kelly brothers made solid progress towards the top 10 in today's race, but when Garth Tander ran him wide on the exit of Turn 4 mid-race, it not only cost him time but also damaged the steering on his Jack Daniel's Commodore.
Kelly worked hard to regain ground with his damaged car but in the end could only managed 22nd position, putting him 19th in the points standings.
Courtney won today's final race for the weekend at Winton Motor Raceway ahead of Lowndes and Holdsworth.
The seventh event of the 2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series will be held at Hidden Valley Raceway when the Skycity Triple Crown is staged in Darwin, Northern Territory on June 18-20.
JACK DANIEL'S RACING QUOTEBOARD
RICK KELLY - #15 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore:
"It's disappointing to finish fourth after starting from pole," said Rick Kelly.
"Jamie (Whincup) did a good job and got us off the line. It wasn't too bad at that point because we could try and keep with him to set the pace, but our car just wasn't able to do that at that point in the race.
"He got away from us and obviously the two cars behind us snuck by and pulled away.
"There are no regrets from that part of the race because I couldn't do anything about it. I didn't want to slow ourselves down by trying to hold James (Courtney) and Craig (Lowndes) up so they got through quite easily because of the pace they had and drove away.
"We did a couple of things with the car during the race that made it a better race package, but unfortunately that was only for the last stint there.
"Compared to the others in the last stint we were a lot stronger there but unfortunately it was too little, too late.
"A fourth place and a pole from today is great, but a little disappointing because it's a little disappointing that we could maximise our pole position."
QUESTION: The race finished three laps short of the full scheduled distance due to time. You finished right behind Lee so do you think you could have passed him for third in another three laps?
"We definitely had the ability to pass him. His tyres went off quicker than ours. We were a lot stronger. I was driving the car as straight as I could to just make sure that if he did fall away we had a good shot at him.
"For sure, I only needed one or two laps more and I would have had a bit of a lunge at him. It's disappointing.
"They set the goal posts and they are variable. It was the same for everyone, I guess. It's disappointing because we always want to run the full laps and we just fell short of the podium, but all the teams are in the same boat and are well aware of the time cut off."
TODD KELLY - #7 Jack Daniel's Racing Holden Commodore:
"It's not where we wanted to be," said Todd Kelly.
"It had the potential to be a lot better.
"But it seems as though the rules have changed out there because I got driven off the track on the exit of a corner three times during that race and the steering was bent a mile.
"I lost a heap of track position and time so I'm a bit annoyed."