Sandown: Orrcon Racing race report

FOUR SEASONS IN ONE DAY FOR ORRCON RACING Larkham -- Orrcon Racing put in a consistent performance to rack up a bag of Championship points during the Betta Electrical 500, round nine of the V8 Supercar Championship, held in changeable...


Larkham -- Orrcon Racing put in a consistent performance to rack up a bag of Championship points during the Betta Electrical 500, round nine of the V8 Supercar Championship, held in changeable conditions south east of Melbourne today.

Throughout the weekend the team's regular drivers Jason Bargwanna and Mark Winterbottom were joined in the first endurance race of the year by Swiss driver Alain Menu and Kiwi Matt Halliday who shared the driving duties in the number 10 Orrcon Racing Falcon.

During yesterday's qualifying Winterbottom set the 14th fastest time while Halliday made his set the 24th fastest time in his first qualifying session aboard a V8 Supercar.

At the start of the race Bargwanna took the wheel of the number 20 Orrcon Racing Falcon while Menu, a dual British Touring Car Champion, steered the number 10 entry into the opening turn of the 161-lap race.

Running just outside the top ten Bargwanna made his first compulsory pit stop on lap 53 allowing the crew to change tyres and front brake pads while Winterbottom climbed behind the wheel. Unfortunately Winterbottom encountered an electrical problem on his out lap dropping him down seven positions.

Menu pitted several laps later to hand the driving duties over to Halliday who ran the majority of his stint inside the top twenty. His consistent run was halted by a puncture on lap 91 which forced him off the circuit and caused damage to the radiator and front end components and into the pit area for repairs.

The crew completed the required repairs in less than 20 minutes but unfortunately cooling and oil pressure problems forced Halliday back into the pit area on more than six occasions and eventually out of the race.

Meanwhile Winterbottom and Bargwanna continued to work their way up the order in the changeable conditions and appeared to be on track to finish just outside the top ten. Unfortunately heavy rain several laps from home halted Bargwanna's charge and he crossed the line 16th.

"We had our fair share of dramas but we managed to keep recovering all day," said Bargwanna.

"Towards the end of the race we were on the right tyre (slicks) but with about five laps to go the rain started and we went from what was looking towards a top eleven spot to 16th which is a little disappointing.

"Our focus now turns to Bathurst where, just like last year, I believe we will be very strong. We will have a download of the data from this weekend and spend a lot of time dissecting it to make some improvements."

Team Owner Mark Larkham was encouraged by the performance of the team throughout the weekend as they prepare for the biggest race of the year, the Super Cheap 1000 at Bathurst.

"We came here with an objective that was very important, especially for the number 20 car, and we achieved that objective by getting the car to the end and collecting a swag of points," said Larkham.

"All day we were trying to call, is it going to rain? Is it going to dry up? Some got it right, some got it wrong. I am pretty happy with the way everything worked out.

"One of the biggest things about this race is that it is used very much as a warm up for Bathurst and I think we will be strong there, especially the combination of Bargs and Frosty."

Today's race was won by Craig Lowndes and Yvan Muller. The Ford pair finished in front of Mark Skaife and Todd Kelly with the team of Jason Richards and Jamie Whincup finishing third.

Marcos Ambrose remains the Championship leader ahead of fellow Ford driver Russell Ingall. Steven Richards is third.

The next round of the Championship is the Super Cheap Auto 1000 at Bathurst on October 6 -- 9.


Race Results 1.C.Lowndes/Y.Muller (Ford) - 161 laps 2.M.Skaife/T.Kelly (Holden) 3.J.Richards/J.Whincup (Holden) 4.R.Kelly/G.Tander (Holden) 5.S.Ellery/A.Macrow (Ford) 6.D.Brabham/J.Bright (Ford) - 160 7.R.Ingall/L.Youlden (Ford) 8.P.Morris/P.Radisich (Holden) 9.J.Bowe/B.Jones (Ford) 10.C.McConville/A.Jones (Holden) 11.J.Courtney/J.Richards (Holden) - 159 12.D.Canto/G.Seton (Ford) 13.M.Ambrose/W.Luff (Ford) 14.S.Richards/P.Dumbrell (Holden) 15.C.McLean/G.Ritter(Ford) 16.J.Bargwanna/ M.Winterbottom (Ford) - 158 17.A.Davison/A.Simonsen (Holden) 18.W.Davison/S.Johnson (Ford) 19.C.Baird/D.Besnard (Ford) 20.L.Holdsworth/P.Scifleet (Holden) - 157 21.D.Brede/J.Cleland (Ford) 22.M.Marshall/A.Tagliani (Ford) 23.S.Owen/M.White (Ford) - 156 24.J.Fernandez/D.White (Ford) - 153 25.A.Tratt/T.Evangelou (Holden) - 153 26.M.Coleman/C.D'Agostin (Holden) - 152 DNF Coulthard/T.D'Alberto (Holden) - 156 DNF G.Murphy/P.Weel (Holden) - 140 DNF A.Menu/M.Halliday (Ford) 116 DNF M.Noske/T.Leahey (Holden) - 113 DNF O.Kelly/N.Pretty (Holden) - 86 DNF A.Gurr (Holden) - 56 DNF M.Porter (Holden)

Championship Points After 9 of 13 rounds 1.Marcos Ambrose (Ford) 1486 2.Russell Ingall (Ford) 1408 3.Steven Richards (Holden) 1363 4.Craig Lowndes (Ford) 1261 5.Todd Kelly (Holden) 1253 6.Mark Skaife (Holden) 1202 7.Garth Tander (Holden) 1144 8.Jason Bright (Ford) 1096 9.Steven Johnson (Ford) 1042 10.Glenn Seton (Ford) 1038 11.Paul Radisich (Holden) 1022 12.Rick Kelly (Holden) 1018 13.Cameron McConville (Holden) 1011 14.Greg Murphy (Holden)1008 15. John Bowe (Ford) 1006 16.Jamie Whincup (Holden) 909 17.Paul Morris (Holden) 839 18.Steve Ellery (Ford) 816 19.Jason Richards (Holden) 787 20.Brad Jones (Ford) 757 21.Paul Weel (Holden) 720 22.Jason Bargwanna (Ford) 713 30.Mark Winterbottom (Ford) 490

IMAGES: To download the images on this media release at a high resolution, please click on the image, follow the prompts and enter the password -- 2005media

AUDIO GRAB:To access the voice grab please click on the image on the right and follow the prompts.

For further information please contact Lee Hanatschek -- BAM Media Orrcon Racing Communications Manager Phone +61 (0)7 5563 1155 Mobile +61 (0)403 531 914

[Car20_front_left_turn_thumb.jpg] Jason Bargwanna during the early running of today's race

[Car10_flame_thumb.jpg] Dual British Touring Car Champion Alain Menu in the Orrcon Racing Falcon

[suiting_up_thumb.jpg] Menu and Matt Halliday suiting up for battle

[Car10_left_side_thumb.jpg] Halliday in action during his second Betta Electrical Sandown 500

[audio_thumb.gif] A post race interview with Jason Bargwanna


Orrcon Racing


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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Steven Johnson , Matthew Halliday , Garth Tander , Marcos Ambrose , Yvan Muller , Jason Bright , Greg Murphy , Cameron McConville , Russell Ingall , Rick Kelly , Brad Jones , Mark Skaife , Paul Weel , Mark Larkham , Craig Lowndes , Jason Bargwanna , Paul Morris , Jason Richards , Paul Radisich , John Bowe , Jamie Whincup , Glenn Seton , Todd Kelly , Mark Winterbottom , Alain Menu , Steven Richards