Mark Winterbottom has closed to within 18 points of series leader Craig Lowndes by winning the second of this weekend’s four races at Pukekohe Raceway.
The Ford Performance Racing driver bounced back from a troubled Friday – where he had wild spins in both qualifying and the race – with a lights-to-flag win. He overtook pole-sitter James Courtney at Turn 1 and controlled the 35-lap race from there on.
His only serious threat came with having to manage a safety car restart with less than ten laps to go, triggered by a mechanical failure for Robert Dahlgren’s Volvo.
That allowed Courtney to close right up to Winterbottom, but ‘Frosty’ had no trouble keeping the chasing Holden at bay to claim his second win of the 2014 season.
It was a double podium result for the works Ford team, with Winterbottom’s teammate Chaz Mostert finishing third, getting by reigning champion Jamie Whincup at the final corner after his Holden ran wide at the high-speed right-hander.
Whincup held onto fourth, finishing ahead of Shane van Gisbergen and Scott McLaughlin, with Nick Percat, David Reynolds, Garth Tander and Fabian Coulthard completing the top ten.
Championship leader Lowndes had a poor first race after he only qualified fifteenth. The veteran lost more ground after sliding wide at the final corner and crossed the finish line in sixteenth place.
Friday race-winner Jason Bright also had a poor race, suffering incidents with both van Gisbergen and Tim Slade. He earned a drive-through penalty for his contact with the latter, but took the opportunity to make a pit stop and charge back up to finish twelfth from last place.
2014 V8 Supercars ITM 500 Auckland – Race 2 Results (35 laps):
|Driver||Team / Entry||Result|
|1.||Mark Winterbottom||Pepsi Max Crew FPR / Ford Falcon FG||39:39.700|
|2.||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team / Holden Commodore VF||+ 1.951|
|3.||Chaz Mostert||Pepsi Max Crew FPR / Ford Falcon FG||+ 5.252|
|4.||Jamie Whincup||Red Bull Racing / Holden Commodore VF||+ 6.789|
|5.||Shane van Gisbergen||TEKNO VIP Petfoods / Holden Commodore VF||+ 8.693|
|6.||Scott McLaughlin||Valvoline Racing Polestar GRM / Volvo S60||+ 9.391|
|7.||Nick Percat||Walkinshaw Racing/ Holden Commodore VF||+ 10.315|
|8.||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O Racing Team / Ford Falcon FG||+ 12.151|
|9.||Garth Tander||Holden Racing Team / Holden Commodore VF||+ 12.770|
|10.||Fabian Coulthard||Lockwood Racing / Holden Commodore VF||+ 14.031|
|11.||Scott Pye||Wilson Security Racing / Ford Falcon FG||+ 14.903|
|12.||Jason Bright||Team BOC / Holden Commodore VF||+ 17.631|
|13.||Todd Kelly||Jack Daniel’s Racing / Nissan Altima||+ 22.452|
|14.||Lee Holdsworth||Erebus Motorsport / Mercedes E63 AMG||+ 22.687|
|15.||James Moffat||Nissan Hornets / Nissan Altima||+ 22.961|
|16.||Craig Lowndes||Red Bull Racing / Holden Commodore VF||+ 23.962|
|17.||Rick Kelly||Jack Daniel’s Racing / Nissan Altima||+ 24.273|
|18.||Will Davison||Erebus Motorsport / Mercedes E63 AMG||+ 24.677|
|19.||Russell Ingall||Repair Management / Holden Commodore VF||+ 25.096|
|20.||Michael Caruso||Nissan Hornets / Nissan Altima||+ 25.961|
|21.||Dale Wood||Team ADVAM / Holden Commodore VF||+ 55.560|
|22.||Jack Perkins||Jeld-Wen / Ford Falcon FG||+ 1:00.665|
|DNF.||Robert Dahlgren||Valvoline Racing Polestar GRM / Volvo S60||24 laps|
|DNF.||Tim Slade||SuperCheap Auto Racing / Holden Commodore VF||10 laps|
|WD.||David Wall||Wilson Security Racing / Ford Falcon FG|
Image via Ford Performance Racing