Tickford Racing completed its final race of the weekend on Sunday at the Melbourne 400, and while Chaz Mostert (No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Falcon FG X) stamped another top five to his season, misfortune befell two other team cars in the 13-lap sprint race.
Mostert held station from his fourth starting position to claim his sixth top ten in as many races in 2018 – the only driver in the field to do so – and remains fourth in the championship after two rounds.
During a late safety car, Mark Winterbottom and Cameron Waters elected to pit for fresh SuperSoft tyres in attempt to gain track position in the sprint to the finish, but the lengthened safety car period narrowed that run to the end from potentially three green flag laps to one. Waters was also handed a five-second post race penalty for contact with Car 99 on Lap 5, and with the field bunched in the final laps, was dropped from 18th to 22nd in the final tally. Frosty finished 17th, while Richie Stanaway finally completed a race without a major issue, and came home 18th.
The Supercars championship will contest four more events over the next eight weeks, beginning with the Tasmania SuperSprint April 7-9 at Symmons Plains Raceway.
No. 5 The Bottle-O Ford Falcon FG X
Race 6 Start: 14th
Race 6 Finish: 17th
“We just didn’t have the car speed today, we were just slow really. We made the right call with the pit stop at the end, but unfortunately the safety car went a lap longer than we thought it would and that cost us at least two more laps of racing. I think we would’ve gotten back further up than we were if we had more laps. It was a three point risk, but we just had no speed. The car wasn’t there today, not a good way to end. I think the car will suit Tassie better than it did this weekend, so we’ll try and turn it around.”
No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Falcon FG X
Race 6 Start: 15th
Race 6 Finish: 22nd
“We got a five-second penalty for tapping a car that was coming back on track, which was a bit rough to be honest, I don’t know where they expected me to go. The guys made the right call to roll the dice and get some tyres at the end, but the safety car went longer than we expected. With a few more laps it would have been a good bit of fun, but a one lap dash was all it was. It just didn’t go our way, just a 50-point race so it’s not the end of the world. The car wasn’t too bad, when you qualify poorly it makes thing pretty difficult, but I’m confident going into the next few rounds.”
No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Falcon FG X
Race 6 Start: 4th
Race 6 Finish: 4th
“It was a good weekend overall, but I’m not as confident in the car as I’d like to be. I think we made the car better, back to a more generic, happy car with us by the end of the weekend, but we still have some pretty big gains to make in the car. Obviously our competitors have brought out a monster of a car this year, which has brought a lot of other teams into the mix at the front, so we’ve got to step our game up and take it to them going forward. Overall I think we did the best weekend we could with what we’ve got, so I’m happy with a consistent weekend. Yesterday was a shame, would have been nice to get a trophy, but it’s one of those things that goes for you some days and against you on others.”
No. 56 MEGA Fuels/Tickford Ford Falcon FG X
Race 6 Start: 20th
Race 6 Finish: 18th
“We showed some promising pace today, we just struggled in qualifying and that’s what hurt us most on the weekend. It’s pretty hard to get much out of the weekend in terms of results, but it was still a good learning experience for me, just trying to get on top of the race pace. We were on par with my teammates the past couple days, so that’s good news. There are some positives to take out of the weekend, and I’m looking forward to Tasmania.
Tim Edwards, Team Principal
“While we scored some reasonable results over the weekend, I think we’re all happy to have it done with. We had good cars this weekend, but couldn’t convert our pace into trophies, which is obviously what we’re in this game for. Luck didn’t do us many favours in that area, but we have some work to do before we go to Tassie. It’s a quick turnaround but we’ll head back up to the shop and come out stronger in a couple weeks.”
1) Shane van Gisbergen – 486 points
2) David Reynolds – 437
3) Scott McLaughlin – 425
4) Chaz Mostert – 416
5) Jamie Whincup – 379
9) Mark Winterbottom – 329
10) Cameron Waters – 325
26) Richie Stanaway – 104
1) Triple Eight Engineering – 865 points
2) Walkinshaw-Andretti-United – 772
3) Tickford Racing (5/55) – 745
9) Tickford Racing (6/56) – 399