WHINCUP SECURES WINTON VICTORY AS FOUR CALTEX DRIVERS FINISH IN THE TOP 12 Caltex-backed TeamVodafone driver Jamie Whincup showed consistency is the key to victory in round four of the 2007 V8 Supercar Championship Series at the Winton Motor ...
WHINCUP SECURES WINTON VICTORY AS FOUR CALTEX DRIVERS FINISH IN THE TOP 12
Caltex-backed TeamVodafone driver Jamie Whincup showed consistency is the key to victory in round four of the 2007 V8 Supercar Championship Series at the Winton Motor Raceway in Victoria today.
After winning yesterday's opening 40-lap race Whincup recorded a pair of second place finishes in today's two heats aboard his Caltex-backed TeamVodafone Falcon to finish the round one point clear of championship leader Garth Tander.
Today's victory is Whincup's first since last October's Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 and the third of his V8 Supercar career. As a consequence of his win he is now third in the championship standings.
Whincup's team-mate Craig Lowndes was the next best of the Caltex-backed drivers in fifth place overall. Lowndes was one of the big movers in this morning's race moving up 12 spots from his 18th starting position. He continued this trend in the final race by crossing the line fifth.
Caltex Racing's Russell Ingall showed true grit and determination to claw his way back to near the front of the back after he was forced to start from 31st position in yesterday's opening race. Ingall's pace was vastly improved during today's two races and he finished seventh overall for the round.
Courtesy of today's result Ingall is now inside the top ten in the series standings in ninth position.
James Courtney crossed the line eighth in the final race, which was seven spots higher than his starting position, to secure 12th overall for the round in his Jeld-Wen Motorsport Falcon.
After four rounds in the 14-round championship Rick Kelly leads the way one point ahead of team-mate Tander.
The next round of the 2007 V8 Supercar Championship Series will be held at Sydney's Eastern Creek Raceway on June 9 -- 11.
Russell Ingall - #9 Caltex Racing Ford Falcon "We turned a mud pie into a pavlova today," said Ingall.
"It was just a shame that we couldn't take advantage of the wet race yesterday. We had the pace to win the race and James would have been there too if the circumstances had gone our way.
"We were going to run the same strategy as the Jeld-Wen guys, going to dry tyres.
"There was a good chance both of us would have finished in the top three and if you can start from there today, you have every chance of winning the round.
"We even had good pace in the dry today so there are definitely good things happening.
"Coming from the back of the grid twice is pretty hard. We are still not there yet and we can't pack up and pat ourselves on the back.
"We are still a couple of tenths away from the guys that are winning the championship and we have to find them. We have to step it up."
Craig Lowndes - #888 Team Vodafone Ford Falcon "Race Two was disappointing in that our pit strategy was effective in leap frogging a number of positions but being turned around and losing those was disheartening," said Lowndes.
"All credit must go to both car engineers on producing a dry track setup after we had poor form during practice and qualifying.
"I am always happy to see the team do well but I must say I am really looking forward to Eastern Creek where I have had some good results."
Jamie Whincup - #88 Team Vodafone Ford Falcon "We had a slow start to the weekend but once the rain came we were very quick in the wet," said Whincup.
"The gamble with setup in Race Three worked well and we had good balance throughout the race. In fact the car was as fast at the end as it was at the start.
"It is great to have the first Ford win for 2007. It must be that Chassis 10 really feels at home here after Craig winning with it last year."
James Courtney - #4 Jeld-Wen Motorsport Ford Falcon "It's been a trying weekend," said Courtney.
"We had good pace in the Jeld-Wen Falcon in the wet and intermediate conditions and we had the gear to pass a lot of cars.
"But with a few calls from the crew not coming off and me not seeing the yellow flag on Saturday we didn't get the results that we should have.
"I think I passed about 100 cars this weekend so in that way it was a lot of fun. The result wasn't what I wanted but being able to race hard, make lots of moves and rough things up a bit in the rain was definitely good fun."