Veterans storm through the field to win at Australian Grand Prix Veteran stagers John Bowe and Brad Jones almost literally came from the clouds after an extraordinary gamble gave them a one-two finish in today's second V8 Supercar race at the...
Veterans storm through the field to win at Australian Grand Prix
Veteran stagers John Bowe and Brad Jones almost literally came from the clouds after an extraordinary gamble gave them a one-two finish in today's second V8 Supercar race at the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.
The 'odd couple' drove their BOC gases Falcons virtually through an entire field with a perfectly timed 19-lap dash, starting the race on dry weather tyres when the day had consisted of storms, showers and heavy rain.
They were the only two cars to make the decision to risk all and start the race on skates. The rain lifted for the race and both cars, with headlights beaming, streamed through the field when Bowe came from 11th to win and Jones from an amazing 24th to second place.
"It was like taking candy from a baby," the affable Jones said afterwards.
"If you are going to take a punt like that you had better make it work. There was never any doubt in my mind it was the right decision. I was really surprised some of the other guys down the back didn't do the same."
Bowe and Jones finished third at Bathurst last year. Bowe was a consistent Top 10 finisher all of last year and proved his calibre when he effortlessly swept through the field, passing Marcos Ambrose and Mark Skaife with three laps to go.
Jones did likewise on lap 18.
"One hundred times you could make that decision and it's only going to pay off twice," Bowe said. "It just so happened that it worked for us today."
Bowe said while it was a great start to the year there was plenty of work to do before the championship opener at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide in a fortnight.
"Adelaide's a terrific challenge, this is just fun stuff," he said. "Once you get into a racer like the Clipsal 500 it becomes very strategic."
The first lap of the race in the wet conditions bordered on the bizarre. Five cars -- that of Supercheap Auto Racing's Paul Weel and team-mate Greg Murphy, David Besnard from WPS, Andrew Jones from BOC Gases and Anthony Tratt from Toll Racing.
All five were involved in the same incident when something seemed to happen between Tratt and Besnard, Weel was spun around while Murphy and Jones both came to grief simply avoiding the carnage in front.
Moments later under safety car, the race leader Todd Kelly did the seemingly unthinkable, losing control under the safety car turning into the main straight.
A mix of driver error and the conditions resulted in Kelly slipping on the painted curb, careered across the track and went nose front into the wall.
He recovered after losing numerous spots but then the winner of race one was forced to pit to repair the damage and subsequently exited the race, leaving his Holden Racing Team team-mate in the lead.