TICKFORD RACING – MELBOURNE 400 SATURDAY REPORT
24 March, 2018
Tickford Racing saw split fates across its four entries on Saturday at the Melbourne 400, where three of the team’s cars claimed top tens in both of the day’s races, but a failed gamble that cost Chaz Mostert (No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Falcon FG X) a podium finish soured an otherwise respectable day at the Australian Grand Prix.
Race 5 was contested in soaking wet conditions, as Cameron Waters (No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Falcon FG X) brought home his second top five of 2018 in the 13-lap sprint race, with Mostert sixth and Mark Winterbottom (No. 5 The Bottle-O Ford Falcon FG X) ninth. Richie Stanaway (No. 56 MEGA Fuels/Tickford Ford Falcon FG X) was not classified after an electrical issue kept him out of the first few laps of the race and he did not complete the minimum 75% race distance.The 25-lap Race 5 was wild when a brief but heavy rainstorm came over the track at Lap 19. With varying levels of driveability across the 5.303-kilometre circuit, a number of cars elected to pit for wet tyres, including Mostert (from third) and Stanaway (from 20th). Stanaway copped a pit lane penalty for speeding in the lane during his stop, while Mostert was stranded mid pack when the rain dissipated a few laps later. Having stayed on slicks, Winterbottom and Waters reaped the benefits and finished seventh and ninth. Mostert mounted a comeback to tenth at the chequered flag, while Stanaway was mired down in 25th following the penalty.The Supercars championship concludes its weekend at the Australian Grand Prix Sunday with Race 6, a 13-lap sprint race, which begins at 1:45 p.m. AEDT.
DRIVERS’ VIEW
No. 5 The Bottle-O Ford Falcon FG X
Mark Winterbottom
Race 4 Start: 10th
Race 4 Finish: 9th
Race 5 Start: 12th
Race 5 Finish: 7th

“Today was reasonable for us, not great but not bad. We were able to pick up a spot in Race 4 in the wet, but I’m not sure we had much more in it then. We didn’t have a great start to the second race, just got caught in the shuffle at the start and couldn’t get around some guys. When the rain came we thought it’d be quick so we stayed out, and it was right on the fence but we stuck it out because we knew if we pitted we’d drop way down the order. Fortunately it slowed up and we were able to stay out and bring home a good finish. We’re still working on the balance of the car to get it better for tomorrow. We start well down the order so we’ll need every bit of speed we can find.”
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No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Falcon FG X
Cameron Waters
Race 4 Start: 4th
Race 4 Finish: 5th
Race 5 Start: 22nd
Race 5 Finish: 9th

“It actually wasn’t too bad a day for us, which was nice. It was good to score a top five in the wet race, but we knew we were in for a big job with this afternoon’s race, starting from the back, but salvaged ninth. We were trucking along for probably a top 15 if it had stayed dry. We decided to stay out when the rains came, use my speedway experience and managed to get a top ten, so I’m overall pretty happy with today. We’re chipping away at the car, making it better, and we’ll see how we go tomorrow.”
No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Falcon FG X
Chaz Mostert
Race 4 Start: 9th
Race 4 Finish: 6th
Race 5 Start: 6th
Race 5 Finish: 10th

“It was a pretty good first race for us given the conditions, it was good to pick up a few spots in a sprint race after qualifying down the order a bit. But the evening race was a real punch in the gut. The boys did a great job to get us out in P3, but when it rained we made a split second call to pit for wets. Obviously it dried up a few laps later and we had just handed over heaps of track position. If it had stayed wet I think we would have been on for the win, but it didn’t pan out. We battled back to a top ten but the car was good enough for a podium which is tough. Sometimes when you gamble it backfires, that’s just part of the game, but this one’s really frustrating.”
No. 56 MEGA Fuels/Tickford Ford Falcon FG X
Richie Stanaway
Race 4 Start: 25th
Race 4 Finish: 25th
Race 5 Start: 25th
Race 5 Finish: 25th

“Consistency is key in this sport, but the only thing we’ve done consistently is find new ways to have a race ruined. Our first race was done in because the rain light wasn’t working, which should be a small fix but it went deeper than it needed to, so that race was basically just a practice session. I actually picked off six cars on the start of Race 5 and we had good pace like yesterday, but we made the call to pit when the rain started coming down, and I got hit for speeding. At this point we just need a clean race. We start towards the back again, but hopefully we can finish the weekend with something positive.”
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Tim Edwards, Team Principal
“25 years ago I was told days like these build character, and while I think I’ve built quite a lot of it over the years, we’ll have to take this one on the chin. It was a good day for Cam and Frosty, and six top tens across two races is good for most teams, but we could if not should have a trophy in the garage right now, and that’s a tough pill to swallow for all of us. Tomorrow won’t be easy either, but we’ll put our heads down and give it another crack to try and end the weekend on a high.”DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP
1) Shane van Gisbergen – 464 points
2) Scott McLaughlin – 393
3) David Reynolds – 387
4) Chaz Mostert – 376
5) James Courtney – 375
8) Cameron Waters – 312
9) Mark Winterbottom – 311
26) Richie Stanaway – 87
TEAMS’ CHAMPIONSHIP
1) Triple Eight Engineering – 800 points
2) Walkinshaw-Andretti-United – 735
3) Tickford Racing (5/55) – 687
9) Tickford Racing (6/56) – 369