TOP TEN FOR WILSON AT WINTON WPS Racing's Max Wilson showed that consistency will produce a good result when he claimed his second top ten round finish of 2006 at Winton Motor Raceway, round four of the V8 Supercar Championship, in Victoria...
TOP TEN FOR WILSON AT WINTON
WPS Racing's Max Wilson showed that consistency will produce a good result when he claimed his second top ten round finish of 2006 at Winton Motor Raceway, round four of the V8 Supercar Championship, in Victoria this weekend.
After qualifying 15th and then finishing 13th in yesterday's opening race Wilson moved up the order in today's reverse-grid race to finish seventh.
Wilson's WPS Racing team-mate Jason Bargwanna was on track for his best result of the season in the reverse grid race before he was dealt a bitter blow with four laps remaining. The former Bathurst champion was forced off the circuit after being hit from behind several times by Warren Luff.
As a consequence of the hit from behind Bargwanna made contact with Rick Kelly which broke the steering rack on his WPS Racing Falcon putting a premature end to his race and erasing his chances of a good result for the round. Luff incurred a 27-second time penalty, equivalent of a drive-through penalty, for his part in the incident.
Wilson started the third, and final, race of the round in 12th position with Bargwanna well down the order in 30th as a consequence of not finishing the previous event.
During the early running Wilson made up several positions while Bargwanna was also on the charge to be inside the top 20 before mid race.
Following a good pit stop by the WPS Racing crew Wilson maintained his position just outside the top ten with Bargwanna only two positions further back.
As the race continued the pair both showed competitive pace aboard their WPS Racing Falcons with Wilson crossing the line 12th to seal tenth position overall for the round.
"It's very pleasing to finish all three races and get a result inside the top ten," said Wilson.
"The team made continual progress with the car throughout the weekend and we've closed the gap to the front runners.
"It was a great effort by the effort by the crew who made three good pit stops over the weekend ensuring we stayed right in the hunt for a good result."
Bargwanna finished the final race 13 spots higher than his starting position crossing the line 17th.
"Our aim this weekend was to be competitive and finish in the top half of the field and we managed to achieve that," said Bargwanna.
"A finish inside the top three was certainly on the cards in the second race if I didn't become a victim of someone else's lack of common sense on the race track but we have to move forward and look towards the next round.
"Overall we again improved our speed throughout the weekend and I think we showed in the final race how competitive we can be by moving up so many spots."
Team Principal Mark Larkham was pleased with the overall result of the weekend and looks forward to the team continuing their improvement into the next round of the championship at Darwin in four weeks time.
"It was a good solid effort from the team this weekend, while we didn't quite have the car speed I would have liked but our pit stops and strategy were again very good. Unfortunately though we got caught up in a bit of mischief, not necessarily our fault, which cost us dearly," said Larkham.
"Overall we salvaged a reasonably good result but I look forward to a better performance in Darwin. We've traditionally gone well in Darwin and both drivers seem to enjoy the track. We have a good engine package which should suit the long straight and our chassis set up should be very competitive there, hopefully it will be a good weekend for us."
Craig Lowndes won the final race and the round ahead of Jason Bright and Rick Kelly.
Garth Tander now leads the championship on 1042 points ahead of Rick Kelly (1029) and Lowndes (1012). Wilson is 15th (644) and Bargwanna 22nd (536).
The next round of the Championship is at Hidden Valley, Darwin on June 30 -- July 2.