RAIN RUINS FUJITSU RACING TEAM CHARGE AT PHILLIP ISLAND A mid-race downpour has ended the hopes of the Fujitsu Racing team of Jason Bright and Adam Macrow at the L & H 500 V8 Supercar round at Victoria's Phillip Island. With Bright behind the...
RAIN RUINS FUJITSU RACING TEAM CHARGE AT PHILLIP ISLAND
A mid-race downpour has ended the hopes of the Fujitsu Racing team of Jason Bright and Adam Macrow at the L & H 500 V8 Supercar round at Victoria's Phillip Island.
With Bright behind the wheel, the #25 Fujitsu Racing Ford took the chequered flag in 11th position after earlier eyeing a spot well inside the top-five.
Adam Macrow started the 113-lap race and although he slipped from his starting position of #8 to 17th on the opening lap, he put his head down to hand the car over to Jason Bright in first position on lap #47. The key to this was the outstanding fuel economy which was three laps better than the next best; the Team Vodafone Ford of Craig Lowndes / Jamie Whincup.
With Bright behind the wheel The Fujitsu Ford returned to the track in 14th position, but was in the box seat with fuel mileage. Bright went on a charge, passing amongst others Mark Skaife in the car that would ultimately win the race in the hands of Garth Tander.
On Lap #72 the heavens opened while Bright was in fourth position. With sunshine in view and windy conditions at the track, Bright decided to stay on track, but the wind dropped and the gamble didn't pay off.
He slipped to 11th and despite separate safety car periods, competitors that were at least one lap down refused to pull aside. That along with two separate skirmishes with other cars; kept him in the back of the pack.
The final result masked a strong weekend for the Fujitsu Racing team, which debuted a number of new components including an all-new engine package.
"We had a quick car this weekend, but we needed a nice sunny afternoon to really show just what we could do," said Bright.
"We had by far the best fuel economy today. The plan was to make a short stop at the end which would have vaulted us well inside the top-five. In the middle of the race we easily overtook the car that ended up winning!
"When the rain came we took a punt on staying out. It had been blustery all day, but ironically the wind dropped when it rained.
"In saying that we held onto the lead lap, but with all the cars at least a lap down in front of us we had no chance. Especially as no one seemed interested in obeying move over flags.
"I am extremely pleased with how the car performed this weekend. Since we debuted some new components at the previous round at Winton and the engine package here, we have jumped well inside the top-10. We still have more to come, including some new parts for Bathurst.
"I feel very confident going to Bathurst. Adam is doing a great job in the driver's seat and our entire group has improved since last year.
"We nearly won the race last year with a car that is nowhere near as good as this one. We have every right to feel confident going to the Mountain this year.
Fujitsu Racing Chief Engineer Geoff Slater was disappointed with the final result, but pleased with the improvement in the car and team.
"The car has been great this weekend and throughout the first half of the race," said Slater.
"We had a great strategy and we tried to stick to it, but the weather and safety cars brought the field back into the race.
"We could have been well inside the top-five. In fact we were in eighth when we got caught-up in a collision with cars that were not even on the same lap!
"Our preparation and team work this weekend has been excellent. It would have been nice to reward all the hard work with a result, but we will do that at Bathurst.
Adam Marcow was pleased with his time in the car and shares the confidence going to Bathurst.
"I was very pleased with the car in the race," said Macrow.
"It stayed consistent throughout, which is very pleasing considering we went the longest of any car out there.
"The format this weekend that included the Saturday qualifying and racing has been a big bonus for me. It was great to get plenty of time behind the wheel in the race and throughout the entire weekend.
"It gives me plenty of confidence going Bathurst. I can't wait."
Australia's premier motor race, the Supercheap Auto 1000 will be held at Mount Panorama on October 9-12.