ROUGH DAY IN THE OFFICE FOR FPR Ford Performance Racing (FPR) fell victim to a series of incidents in their opening 250km race on home-turf on the streets of Adelaide this afternoon. Contesting the third round of the Australian V8 Supercar ...
ROUGH DAY IN THE OFFICE FOR FPR
Ford Performance Racing (FPR) fell victim to a series of incidents in their opening 250km race on home-turf on the streets of Adelaide this afternoon.
Contesting the third round of the Australian V8 Supercar Championship, FPR drivers Steve Richards and Mark Winterbottom copped the brunt of several aggressive moves staged by their opponents.
Starting from third place on the grid, Winterbottom held his own against Garth Tander and Jamie Whincup before he was punted by Ford compatriot James Courtney on lap 18.
Suffering major damage to his rear spoiler, Winterbottom was called to the pits for the required repairs - but soon after returning to the track, deeper problems caused by the shunt started to surface eventually requiring another unscheduled stop, costing the Orrcon Steel pilot several laps.
With the problem sorted, Winterbottom worked his way through the back markers eventually finishing in 21st position.
"It was a real shame today," Winterbottom reflected.
"Apart from the obvious dramas caused by the shunt, the Orrcon Steel Falcon was really, really good … sadly the highlight for me was the move I pulled on Shane (Van Gisbergen) for 23rd position … but you probably missed that!" Winterbottom joked.
"In all seriousness, we made the best of a bad situation and dialed through a few different settings for the remainder of the session so we're actually looking in pretty good shape for tomorrow."
Steve Richards' fate was much better this afternoon.
After a promising start and great strategy playing out, Richo was tagged and turned on lap 40 by namesake Jason Richards - but soon found himself back in his rightful position when several cars in front of him ended up in the wall.
With a strong fuel strategy playing in his favour, Richo put his head down but a brake lock up on fresh tyres with 14 laps to go - saw him spear down the escape road and out of contention for a top ten finish - he eventually crossed the line in 17th.
"It was pretty crazy out there … but it always is," Richo said.
"The middle stint was actually the best the car has felt this year so I'm confident we'll keep progressing this weekend … being punted twice today didn't help our cause but hopefully that's enough of that for the weekend and we can get some solid racing in and even better results tomorrow."
Round three of the Australian V8 Supercar Championship continues tomorrow with qualifying for race two at 11.00am - with the race starting at 2.35pm.