20 SEP 2020
Waters collects solid points haul at The Bend
With finishes of eighth and fifth in Sunday's two races at The Bend SuperSprint, Cameron Waters (No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang) completed a solid weekend in South Australia, retaining third in the Virgin Australia Supercars drivers' championship at the conclusion of the season's ninth round. In addition to his fifth place finish on Saturday, Waters has recorded 10 top five finishes in 2020, including nine from the last 12 races.
All four Tickford Mustangs contended with tyre degradation challenges in Race 26 on Sunday morning, largely due to increased track temperature compared to Saturday, and its effect on the Dunlop Soft compound tyre that was used for the first time this weekend at The Bend Motorsport Park.
Lee Holdsworth (No. 5 Truck Assist Ford Mustang) struggled the most of the Tickford cars in Race 26, dropping from 11th to 23rd over the race's final 12 laps as his tyres lost grip. However in Race 27, Holdsworth's balance was notably improved, climbing five spots from his starting position to finish 11th, retaking ninth in the drivers' championship.
Following his runner-up finish on Saturday, Jack Le Brocq (No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Mustang) scored a respectable 10th place finish in Race 26, however found trouble in Race 27 when he locked up his left front tyre, damaging the tyre severely enough that he needed to pit for a second time. The second stop dropped Le Brocq to the rear of the field, en route to a 21st place finish.
James Courtney's (No. 44 Boost Mobile Ford Mustang) Sunday got off to a challenging start, qualifying 24th for Race 26 after a mistake on his flying lap. Courtney picked off 10 competitors in Race 26 to finish 14th, but did not get the opportunity to replicate that performance in Race 27, as he was caught up in a first lap incident that caused too much damage to the No. 44 Mustang to continue. It is Courtney's first retirement since joining the team at the resumption of the Supercars season in June.
The Virgin Australia Supercars Championship returns to The Bend Motorsport Park next weekend for three races on the venue's West Circuit, the first such race event for Supercars on the 3.41-kilometre layout. The Bend SuperSprint 2.0 will be the penultimate event on the 2020 Supercars calendar, hosting Races 28, 29, and 30 of the campaign.
No. 5 Truck Assist Ford Mustang
Race 26 Quali: 1m48.78s, 9th
Race 27 Quali: 1m48.83s, 16th
Race 26 Finish: 23rd
Race 27 Finish: 11th
"It was a frustrating day, starting with qualifying. We didn't have the ultimate pace, the car was quite different to yesterday, I think the conditions of the track changed the balance quite a bit, which hurt us, and our race car was the same. This track overheats tyres, and the more you're out with balance the less the rear tyre can sustain the grip. We were just loose, and in the first race today we just blew the rears off of it, delaminated the tyres, and we fell back at a great rate of knots, and I just tried to bring it home. We learnt a fair bit from that race so for race three (of the weekend) we made some positive changes and we were able to fight forward from where we started. It's still not what we wanted, but I'm hoping we can take what we learned from this weekend and put it to good use next weekend."
No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang
Race 26 Quali: 1m48.69s, 6th
Race 27 Quali: 1m48.40s, 7th
Race 26 Finish: 8th
Race 27 Finish: 5th
"Quali was okay today, and I think our race pace was good, we just had one bad stint in race two (of the weekend), fighting for the podium and the tyres went off. Apart from that we had pretty good race pace and speed in the car, I think we were about the third to sixth fastest car this weekend. It's not as strong as we would like, but we got a lot of points this weekend, and we moved up to third in the points. We'll put our brains together, Pottsie (Sam Potter, engineer) and I, and we'll work out what we can do a little bit better for next week."
No. 44 Boost Mobile Ford Mustang
Race 26 Quali: 1m53.85s, 24th
Race 27 Quali: 1m48.77s, 13th
Race 26 Finish: 14th
Race 27 Finish: DNF
"Tough way to end the weekend. We didn't get the lap together in qualifying for the first race today, so we started down the back. Passing 10 cars was nice but only got us to 14th, then in the second race I just got tangled in the carnage at the second to last corner. I thought I was going to make it through but (Mark) Winterbottom just caught me, next thing I knew I was spinning across the track, which was a bit sketchy. The damage was too severe to get back out today, but the boys will put another corner in the Boost Mobile Mustang and we'll get her ready for next weekend."
No. 55 Supercheap Auto Ford Mustang
Jack Le Brocq
Race 26 Quali: 1m48.87s, 14th
Race 27 Quali: 1m48.71s, 11th
Race 26 Finish: 10th
Race 27 Finish: 21st
"Today had a little bit of everything, but overall it wasn't terrible. Qualifying was okay, probably a little bit off what we wanted it to be, we had a little more understeer than we wanted, but we were there or there abouts. The first race was good, we had okay speed, I was able to climb up four spots and get to 10th and had a pretty cool little drag race to the line. But the last race wasn't that flash, we were trucking along half okay, then I'm not sure what happened, I just locked a front tyre, and the flat spot was that bad we had to pit again. Once we did that we just circulated, I set the fastest lap, but that's about all the positives from that race. It's a sour way to end the weekend, but I think we took another step forward on our car which is encouraging, hopefully we can do it again next week."
Tim Edwards, Team Principal
"It definitely wasn't the way we wanted to end the weekend after the competitiveness we had yesterday. The weather conditions were a fair bit different today and that seems to have turned the track conditions against our cars a bit. Our engineers did well to make changes to the cars for the second race today, then obviously JC and Jack had their issues which put a dampener on things. On the positive side, Cam did well to accumulate points, and he and Jack have given us a bit of a cushion in the teams' championship which is good as well. Our crew also had the fastest pit stop today of 2.7 seconds, so while the results aren't quite what we want there are a fair few positives to take away from the day and the weekend."