Morris overcomes back pain to finish 10th Sirromet Wines Holden Commodore driver Paul Morris overcame back pain at Eastern Creek in Sydney today to secure his first top 10 finish of this year's V8 Supercar Championship motor racing ...
Morris overcomes back pain to finish 10th
Sirromet Wines Holden Commodore driver Paul Morris overcame back pain at Eastern Creek in Sydney today to secure his first top 10 finish of this year's V8 Supercar Championship motor racing series.
Morris completed the third round of the championship over 77 laps in 10th position in his VY Commodore. The 35-year-old from the Gold Coast recorded a race time of 2-hrs 7-mins 55.599-secs, and finished 40.861-secs behind winner Marcos Ambrose, driving a Pirtek Ford Falcon.
The result by Morris in the 300km race at Eastern Creek earned him 138 championship points, and boosted his overall series tally to 315. He improved from 18th to 14th position in the 13-round championship.
Morris started 11th on the grid at Eastern Creek, and was 10th after the opening lap. However, after five laps he began to experience back pain after his safety lap-belt became loose. The pain worsened during his lengthy first stint over 43 laps before he made his first compulsory pit-stop for fuel.
After the pit-stop Morris resumed racing in seventh position. He then made his second compulsory pit-stop for fresh tyres on lap 51 under Safety Car conditions, caused by the retirement of the OzEmail Ford Falcon driven by Brad Jones. Light rain fell briefly during the final 20 laps, but Morris retained track position.
Jason Bright, who finished fourth at Eastern Creek in a Team Brock Commodore, leads the championship with 531 points, followed by Steven Richards on 486 in a Castrol Commodore. Ambrose recorded the fastest lap with a time of 1-min 32.960-secs around the 3.9km circuit. Morris' best lap time was 1-min 34.092-secs, set on lap 60.
PAUL MORRIS QUOTES:
"Overall it's been our best weekend of the season. We were competitive in qualifying and the car was reliable over the full race distance. In the last few races we've had good car speed, but it didn't always show up in the results. It was good to crack the top 10, and today's result was a better indication where we stand in comparison to the others. My main problem today was the seat belt. When it came loose my back started getting sore because I was moving around inside the car so much. Like Phillip Island (previous round) we stayed out as long as we could before changing tyres because it looked like it might have rained. Eventually we decided to go with 'slicks' again -- the track was a little damp, but not enough to change to 'wets'. We got in when the Safety Car was out, but it didn't really help us because just about everyone else had already made their second (pit) stop by then. In the last few laps there was some oil on the track, but I managed to stay out of trouble. Now we've set a benchmark for ourselves, so hopefully it's going to mean staying in the top 10 consistently from now on."