Albert Park: Stone Brothers Racing preview

Lap Record Holder Ingall Ready To Go Racing Stone Brothers Racing's Russell Ingall is comfortable at Albert Park -- yea, the current V8 Supercar lap record holder and reigning Netspace V8 Supercar Challenge champion likes the place. Ingall, a...

Lap Record Holder Ingall Ready To Go Racing

Stone Brothers Racing's Russell Ingall is comfortable at Albert Park -- yea, the current V8 Supercar lap record holder and reigning Netspace V8 Supercar Challenge champion likes the place.

Ingall, a two-time Bathurst champion, will again have the chance to strut his stuff at the home of the Foster's Australian Formula One Grand Prix when he defends his 2003 V8 Supercar Albert Park crown this weekend.

The Caltex Havoline Ford driver has enjoyed his rest after a hectic and controversial 2003 and is now ready to "get back amongst it" after a successful test at Queensland Raceway last week.

Ingall finished second in the opening race at Albert Park last year, won race two and was leading a wet race three when it was red-flagged after just two laps.

"Obviously we had a very good start in the race at the GP last year," said Ingall.

"It was my first time in a Ford and I think it was a little bit of a surprise for everyone involved, including myself.

"It will be nice to head into 2004 with a season of racing the Caltex Havoline Ford under my belt.

"I have always enjoyed the Albert Park layout and I guess the fact that I still have the lap record indicates that.

"While we had a very successful test last week, it seems like years since we have been in the car. I just can't wait to get out there."

Ingall's SBR teammate Marcos Ambrose is also "champing at the bit" to get back behind the wheel of his Pirtek Falcon after a two-month layoff.

While saying that, Ambrose is hoping to have better luck than he did last year, when he failed to finish a couple of races because of continuing electrical problems.

He had gone from the back of the grid to 16th on the opening lap of race three when it was red-flagged after just two laps because of a major accident between Holden drivers Paul Dumbrell and Paul Morris.

"The Albert Park circuit is really a unique layout for us and is always very fast and very smooth," said Ambrose.

"It will be nice to head back there this year with the same equipment with what we finished off with the previous season -- that has not happened to us before.

"The track itself always lends itself to good racing and I think the short and sharp races of 10 and 19 laps will result in plenty of action.

"We battled with some electrical problems last year so I it will be nice to get through the weekend unscathed and in one piece for the opening round in Adelaide in a couple of weeks time."

TRACK FACTS -- ALBERT PARK, MELBOURNE
Venue: Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria
2004 Race format: Top 10 Shootout, Race 1 - 10 Laps (Friday); Race 2 - 19 Laps (Saturday); Race 3 -- 10 Laps (Sunday)
Circuit Length: 5.303km
Circuit Direction: Clockwise
Average Speed: 145kph
Maximum Speed: 275kph

WEEKEND SCHEDULE -- AGP
V8 SUPERCARS

Thursday, March 4, 2004
10.55am-11.25am -- Practice session
2pm-2.30pm -- Qualifying
4.05pm-4.45pm -- Top 10 Shootout

Friday, March 5, 2004
3.25pm-4pm -- Race 1 (10 Laps)

Saturday, March 6, 2004
12.05pm-12.20pm -- Driver Parade lap
4pm-5pm -- Race 2 (19 Laps)

Sunday, March 7, 2004
10.35am-11.10am -- Race 3 (10 Laps)

TV TELECAST -- NETWORK TEN
Saturday -- March 6, 2004
10am-5pm (EDST) -- 9am-4pm (Queensland)
Sunday -- March 7, 2004
10am-5pm (EDST) -- 9am-4pm (Queensland)

-sbr-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Marcos Ambrose , Russell Ingall , Paul Morris , Paul Dumbrell