Clipsal: SBR Sunday report

MARCOS AMBROSE MAKES IT TWO FROM TWO IN ADELAIDE Stone Brothers Racing's Marcos Ambrose notched his second clean sweep of the opening round of the V8 Supercar Championship Series in as many years when he won the second leg of the Clipsal 500 on...

MARCOS AMBROSE MAKES IT TWO FROM TWO IN ADELAIDE

Stone Brothers Racing's Marcos Ambrose notched his second clean sweep of the opening round of the V8 Supercar Championship Series in as many years when he won the second leg of the Clipsal 500 on the streets of Adelaide today.

Ambrose repeated yesterday's race performance and basically led the race from start to finish in his Pirtek Falcon.

Ambrose's SBR team mate was on target to make it a second SBR 1-2 in as many days when a puncture forced him to pit on lap 66 and dropped him from second to 21st in his Caltex Falcon.

He eventually recovered to finish 18th and finish sixth overall for the weekend. It was a disappointing result for Ingall who finished third in last year's opening Clipsal race and then failed to finish because of a rare SBR engine drama.

Ingall had a fantastic battle with Craig Lowndes and Mark Skaife for 20-odd laps and managed to get by both of them on lap 60 despite battling gearbox problems which saw him constantly jumping out of second gear.

In the end Ambrose crossed the line 6.3 seconds ahead of Lowndes and then followed Skaife, Todd Kelly and Paul Dumbrell.

Ambrose leads the championship with 192 points, from Lowndes (183), Kelly (162), Paul Weel (141), Steve Johnson (141) and Ingall (138).

The victory was Ambrose's 14th in 53 starts and while it looked easy, it was anything but, according to the two-time and defending V8 Supercar champion.

"There is no doubt that this has been a tough weekend," said Ambrose.

"We had track position in both races, but I was at 100 per cent every lap except for the final couple.

"This is a great result for the team and now we are looking forward to New Zealand in a month's time.

"This result has not hurt our championship chances. This certainly takes a bit of the pressure off and now we really don't have to think about the championship again until after Bathurst.

"We now just concentrate on some solid results without taking any risks.

"The safety cars were not a problem, you just accept them. They give you a chance to cool off the brakes and tyres. The biggest problem is picking up gunk on your tyres and you stroll around at slow speed."

For Ingall today's race was one that got away.

"We worked bloody hard today and it is disappointing to finish with the result we did," said Ingall.

"There was so much crap on the track -- glass, bits of lights, bits of cars -- it was everywhere.

"The tyre has a slice in it so obviously I have picked up something.

"The gearbox was a problem and cost me a few spots at different stages because it just kept jumping out of second gear.

"I kept myself close enough to Lowndes and Skaife because I knew they would have a go at one another and when they finally did I managed to get past.

"I had to put my head down to stay in second and then everything came undone when the tyre let go at turn three.

"I guess I am lucky it happened there and not at turn eight which would have thrown the car into the wall.

"At the end of the day we are still sixth in the championship, which is a much better start than last year and I am only three points out of fourth.

"If the weekend is any indication then I think the fans are going to be in for one hell of a championship."

The second round of the V8 Supercar Championship Series will be held in Pukekohe in New Zealand from April 15-17.

-sbr-

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Marcos Ambrose , Paul Weel , Craig Lowndes , Todd Kelly , Steve Johnson