Cat Racing star John Bowe was forced to launch a comeback charge at Phillip Island today after contact put him out of the opening race of the Shell Championship Series 2001 season. After starting from position 16, Bowe made an early charge...
Cat Racing star John Bowe was forced to launch a comeback charge at Phillip Island today after contact put him out of the opening race of the Shell Championship Series 2001 season.
After starting from position 16, Bowe made an early charge before being struck by the Falcon of David Besnard at the Honda hairpin.
Although initially able to continue, Bowe was forced to retire several laps later after a front suspension hub broke as a result of the impact.
"Things were progressing well, but the hit by David was really unnecessary," Bowe said.
"He came up and apologised later, but it ruined the day for both of us.
"We finished in the pits and he ended up with a flat tyre. The car was fine for a couple of laps, then the hub gave way.
"It really wasn't the start to the season that we were looking for."
Bowe was forced to retire just prior to making his compulsory pit stop. The result forced him to start from the rear of the grid in race two.
He made quick progress at the start of race two, rising from 31st to 20th after only three laps.
Bowe made his pit stop on lap 10, dropping to 25th before charging back to 17th at the race finish.
"The pace of the car was probably the best it has been all weekend, but starting from the back of the grid makes life very tough," Bowe said.
"We are all disappointed because our race strategies worked out well and we would have been in good shape if we had not of been hit."
Mark Skaife dominated proceedings at Phillip Island, taking pole position and both race wins.
Bowe is now eagerly awaiting the forthcoming Clipsal 500 on the streets of Adelaide.
"Adelaide is a very tough race but we had a pretty strong result there last year and I really like the track," Bowe said.
"We will be working hard on playing catch-up in Adelaide to regain some lost points."
<pre> RACE ONE - 28 laps 1. - Skaife (Holden) - 45:25.306 2. - Bright (Holden) - 45:36.405 3. - Lowndes (Ford) - 45:36.957 4. - Ambrose (Ford) - 45:37.496 5. - Murphy (Holden) - 45:41.361 6. - Richards (Ford) - 45:45.865 DNF BOWE (CAT FORD) - 46:01.645
RACE TWO - 28 laps 1. - Skaife (Holden) - 45:24.962 2. - Lowndes (Ford) - 45:29.057 3. - Murphy (Holden) - 45:30.613 4. - Bright (Holden) - 45:31.273 5. - Richards (Ford) - 45:33.734 6. - Ambrose (Ford) - 45:35.152 17th. BOWE (CAT FORD) - 46:01.645
CALENDAR: April 7-8: - Adelaide April 29: - Eastern Creek April 13: - Darwin