FUJITSU RACING SCORE TOP-10 AT BATHURST CLASSIC The Fujitsu Racing team of Jason Bright and Adam Macrow have finished the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 in ninth place after another classic battle at Mount Panorama. The race was won for the ...
FUJITSU RACING SCORE TOP-10 AT BATHURST CLASSIC
The Fujitsu Racing team of Jason Bright and Adam Macrow have finished the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 in ninth place after another classic battle at Mount Panorama.
The race was won for the third year in a row by fellow Ford stars Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup, giving the Blue Oval its first three-peat since the original Bathurst endurances races in 1963-1965.
Starting 11th Bright climbed to sixth place before handing over to Macrow for his first stint at the wheel.
The opening 74-laps went safety car free, with Macrow maintaining sixth despite late tyre delimitation.
With Bright back aboard another issue raised its head when the in-car radio failed. With the crew reverting to pitboard signals. A safety car on lap #90 had Macrow back in the Fujitsu Falcon in fourth place, but on lap #116 another tyre issue forced him to the pits.
With the crew unaware of him heading to pitlane a hurried stop meant he stayed in the car through to lap #127. The fifth safety car of the race had Bright back aboard for the run to the chequered.
However, the passenger's side window was dislodged and on the high-speed Mountain and Conrod Straights the buffeting winds dropped the Falcon's terminal speed and Bright was forced to fight for positions.
Over the closing laps three more safety cars played into the hands of Bright as he moved from 11th to ninth at the finish.
"That was a great team result today," said Bright.
"Not only did we bring the Fujitsu Racing Ford home in ninth, but also our sister entry from IRWIN Racing finished 14th.
"We did expect a whole lot more, but when you consider the challenges we faced today the final result was very satisfying.
"That was one of the toughest Bathurst races we have had in a number of years. The long green flag period in the first half of the race appeared to play into our hands. Then tyre issues, which just about everyone had, put as back in the pack.
"We started to come back and thanks to some clever strategy we got into the top-five. However, the radio went out, we had another tyre issue and then I lost the window, which really made the final run pretty tough.
"I have to say this has been one of our best race weekends in the four-year history of the team. Our preparation was excellent and the car didn't miss a beat throughout practice and qualifying. Adam did another great job and I know that we made great strides with the car this weekend.
"I'm confident we can enjoy a very strong finish to the year, including the Gold Coast Indy Challenge in a couple of weeks time."
Starting his tenth Bathurst, Macrow was pleased with the performance of the team and car this weekend.
"This was my tenth start and only my second finish -- so I fully appreciate how tough this race is," said Macrow.
"The car was very good, but clearly there were some tyre issues today with so many teams destroying the rubber.
"Running with no radio took me back to karting! The boys did a great job in getting the tyres on and I just knew I had to put my head down.
"I have really appreciated the opportunity to once again join the Fujitsu Racing team and driving with Jason. The whole weekend was a breeze and the team has made great strides even since last year.
"I'm sure it will continue to improve for the rest of the year and be up there in 2009."
Fujitsu Racing Chief Engineer Geoff Slater praised the work of the entire team.
"Last year we left this place with a smashed car -- this year we showed just how strong we are," said Slater.
"Everyone pulled together ahead of this race and I have to say it has been one of best race weekends over the last four years.
"We certainly had plenty of things go against us today, but we never let up and come the end we truly deserved a top-10 finish.
"This weekend has been very tough on a lot of good teams and drivers. We can certainly hold out heads high.
"Our attention now switches to the Gold Coast Indy. Importantly we have a straight car after this weekend and we can have it turned around nice and quick for the trip to Surfers Paradise.
"We are making great strides and I'm sure we can look for a good result on the Gold Coast."
The Gold Coast Indy runs from 23-26 October.