Mark Winterbottom has finished P22 and P8 at the Auckland SuperSprint for Round 11 of the Supercars Championship.
Race 23 – Position 22
After Qualifying P15 for Saturday’s opening Race at the Auckland SuperSprint, Winterbottom’s Race was tainted 15 laps into the 70-lap outing whilst running P10, when the Number 18 Car stopped on track and caused an early Safety Car.
Winterbottom had ran out of fuel and was towed back into Pit Lane, where the team then pushed the car to the Pit Area and refuelled it before returning Winterbottom to the track in P24, 5 laps down.
Winterbottom continued on through the remainder of the Race and finished in P22 as two cars ahead were sent to their garages with damage and rejoined more than 5 laps down.
Later that night an issue with the fuel rig was identified as the catalyst for Winterbottom running out of fuel, with the team putting the problem behind them after a recalibration of their scales.
Race 24 – Position 8
For the final day in Pukekohe, Winterbottom claimed a spot in the Top Ten Shootout following Race 24 Qualifying where he finished in P9.
Winterbottom finished P10 after his one-lap dash, but was promoted to P9 on the Race start as another driver was penalised from the shootout.
On the start of the 70-lap race, Winterbottom climbed into P8 before the cars ahead began to take their stops.
David Reynold’s Commodore stopped on the track and in crazy scenes where the Safety Car entered the track in the wrong position, cars began to take their first stops.
Winterbottom took his first stop but was blocked in after exiting his pit by Jacobson, who had stopped in the lane, and the Safety Car mix-up pushed him back further positions again.
The IRWIN Racing Driver was able to move up to P6 after his final stops but a 15 second penalty for speeding in pit lane demoted his result to P8.
Winterbottom has climbed into 13th in the Supercars Championship Standings with his top ten finish on Sunday.
“It was a good race, our pace in the last stint was exceptional. I got a 15 second penalty for speeding at the entry of pit lane so I’m pretty annoyed with myself for that. With our car pace, we were probably 3rd quickest for that whole last stint. To drive our way back into the 10 after getting blocked in pit lane and a penalty is a really good recovery! It was a race where we could have easily been top 5 but a few little things didn’t go our way and a top 10 is a good result.”
IRWIN Racing will now prepare for the Bathurst 1000 for Round 12 of the 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, to be held on 10 – 13 October with all races to be televised LIVE on Fox Sports.
SUPERCARS CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS
- 1 – Scott McLaughlin, Shell V-Power Racing – 3008 points
- 2 – Shane Van Gisbergen, Red Bull Holden Racing – 2410 points
- 3 – Chaz Mostert, Tickford Racing – 2327 points
- 4 – Fabian Coulthard, Shell V-Power Racing – 2317 points
- 5 – Jamie Whincup, Red Bull Holden Racing – 2140 points
- 13 – Mark Winterbottom, IRWIN Racing – 1516 points