V8 Supercars championship leader Jamie Whincup has claimed fifth championship win of the 2011 season after crossing the finish line first in the opening race of this weekend’s Winton round. The podium was completed by Lee Holdsworth and Steven Johnson.
Meanwhile, Whincup’s pole-sitting team-mate Craig Lowndes had a shocker of a race a finished eleventh.
Lowndes’ problems began with a poor getaway off the line that immediately saw him fall to fourth behind Johnson, Holdsworth and Whincup.
Whincup managed to squeeze by Holdsworth on lap 13, and then about chasing race-leader Johnson, whom he passed during the round of pit stops. Johnson emerged behind Holdsworth and the order ran in that fashion until the finish, although Johnson harried Holdsworth for the rest of the race.
Lowndes’ hopes of a podium finish were dashed when he was unable to get any temperature in his tyres after his pit stop, which left him vulnerable to overtaking moves by several drivers. His misery was compounded when he took a trip off-road at Turn 11, leaving him to finish outside the top ten.
Fourth place instead when to Rick Kelly, who drove an excellent race from 12th on the grid. He finished ahead of Paul Dumbrell, Alex Davison and Jason Bright, who enjoyed a spirited battle with HRT’s Garth Tander (who finished 12th).
Another to salvage a good result was James Courtney, who gambled on a late pit strategy after a disastrous qualifying session that saw him 19th on the grid. He briefly led during the pit stop sequence and finished the race in eighth place.
V8 Supercars Winton 300 Final Classification (Race 1 – 40 laps):
|Driver||Entry / Team||Result|
|1.||Jamie Whincup||Team Vodafone / Triple 8 Race Engineering||1:01:09.0173|
|2.||Lee Holdsworth||Fujitsu Racing / Garry Rogers Motorsport||+ 4.8378|
|3.||Steven Johnson||Jim Beam / Dick Johnson Racing||+ 4.8708|
|4.||Rick Kelly||Jack Daniel’s / Kelly Racing||+ 7.7062|
|5.||Paul Dumbrell||The Bottle-O Racing Team / Rod Nash||+ 10.4241|
|6.||Alex Davison||Irwin / Stone Brothers Racing||+ 12.9373|
|7.||Jason Bright||Team BOC / Brad Jones Racing||+ 13.0886|
|8.||James Courtney||TOLL / Holden Racing Team||+ 16.0043|
|9.||Mark Winterbottom||Orrcon Steel / Ford Performance Racing||+ 18.0781|
|10.||Fabian Coulthard||Bundaberg / Walkinsaw Racing||+ 18.9470|
|11.||Craig Lowndes||Team Vodafone / Triple 8 Race Engineering||+ 22.4902|
|12.||Garth Tander||TOLL / Holden Racing Team||+ 23.5912|
|13.||Will Davison||Trading Post / Ford Performance Racing||+ 24.2854|
|14.||Shane van Gisbergen||SP Tools / Stone Brothers Racing||+ 25.3740|
|15.||Tim Slade||Lucky 7 / Stone Brothers Racing||+ 26.7296|
|16.||Michael Caruso||Fujitsu Racing / Garry Rogers Motorsport||+ 27.1367|
|17.||Russell Ingall||Supercheap Auto / Paul Morris Motorsport||+ 28.2857|
|18.||Greg Murphy||Pepsi Max Crew / Kelly Racing||+ 28.5852|
|19.||James Moffat||Jim Beam / Dick Johnson Racing||+ 30.7861|
|20.||Karl Reindler||Fair Dinkum Sheds / Brad Jones Racing||+ 36.2968|
|21.||Todd Kelly||Jack Daniel’s / Kelly Racing||+ 36.7260|
|22.||David Reynolds||Stratco Racing / Kelly Racing||+ 37.8705|
|23.||Steve Owen||VIP Petfoods / Paul Morris Motorsport||+ 41.3059|
|24.||Jonathon Webb||Mother Energy Racing Team / Tekno||+ 43.3101|
|25.||Dean Fiore||Triple F Racing||+ 1:06.2555|
|26.||Tony D’Alberto||Wilson Security / Tony D’Alberto Racing||6 laps behind|
|DNF.||Warren Luff||Gulf Western Oil Racing / Lucas Dumbrell||1 lap|
|DNF.||Jason Bargwanna||Jana Living / Brad Jones Racing||0 laps|
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