TOWNSVILLE, Queensland, Australia — official series release — V8SC photo —
There were tense moments of teammate versus teammate in the late stages of the Castrol EDGE Townsville 400, but the Ford Falcons continued to dominate on the North Queensland streets as the HRT Commodores powered through the pack in a late push for the podium.
Mark Winterbottom made the pass for the lead on David Reynolds on lap 52 of 70, cautious not to take out his Prodrive teammate as he took the top spot and drove on to win the race by 2.92 seconds.
“That was an awesome race,” Winterbottom said. “The car on hards wasn’t the best, but the guys did a bit of a tweak in the pits top and she was a rocket at the end. To do so many laps on the softs and not just score one win, but two over two days is awesome.”
“Thanks to all the Ford fans as well. It’s been a bit dry for you so thanks for the support.”
Reynolds dropped back to third as James Courtney pushed up through the field, grabbing second on lap 67 after a tense pass on his teammate Garth Tander. Courtney had taken out his teammate in the past two races leading up to Townsville.
Courtney, who started 16th, and his team chose an unusual three-stop strategy before coming home strong at the end of the day.
“We managed to race through — we did it for [Greg Murphy and Peter Brock] — with the 25th anniversary livery,” Courtney explained. “It was a great day. We used quite an unusual strategy, but we had really good car speed. The thing really looked after its tires.”
Tander finished fourth ahead of Red Bull’s Jamie Whincup, who managed to come home fifth ahead of Chaz Mostert. Whincup’s teammate Craig Lowndes also recovered from a poor qualifying effort for a ninth-place result.
While Volvo’s Scott McLaughlin started the race on ARMOR ALL Pole Position and had the jump ahead of Reynolds and Chaz Mostert, his day ended early — McLaughlin lost a water pump pulley during the race, triggering a safety car.
Fabian Coulthard was also in the mix until spinning wheels during his pit stop caused a black flag pit lane penalty.
Winterbottom continues to lead the Championship standings, now by 258 points over Lowndes, with Coulthard dropping to third and Reynolds elevating to fourth.
The next V8 Supercars event is the Coates Hire Ipswich SuperSprint, July 31-Aug. 2.
RESULTS: V8 Supercars Championship — Race 17; Castrol EDGE Townsville 400; Townsville Street Circuit; July 12, 2015
- Mark Winterbottom
- James Courtney
- David Reynolds
- Garth Tander
- Jamie Whincup
- Chaz Mostert
- Lee Holdsworth
- Andre Heimgartner
- Craig Lowndes
- Todd Kelly
- Michael Caruso
- Jason Bright
- Fabian Coulthard
- Tim Slade
- Nick Percat
- Rick Kelly
- James Moffat
- Dale Wood
- Scott Pye
- Shane van Gisbergen
- Tim Blanchard
- David Wall
- Ash Walsh
- Will Davison
- Scott McLaughlin