Craig Lowndes capped off a solid weekend for Red Bull Racing Australia claiming his third podium with a second place finish at the Ipswich SuperSprint on Sunday.
Lowndesy qualified P3 and despite a sluggish start managed to find his way past teammate Jamie Whincup to close in on pole sitter Chaz Mostert and his teammate Mark Winterbottom.
Winterbottom was the first to pit from the lead pack, but a well-timed move from the Red Bull brains trust saw Craig emerge from pit lane on lap 13 ahead of the championship leader.
From there the man in the No.888 Commodore set about closing in on race leader Mostert, however a gap remained steady between the pair as the flag fell on lap 65 handing Lowndes second place and his third podium for the weekend.
Despite qualifying fourth for Sunday’s 200km race, Jamie couldn’t find the pace necessary to challenge and found himself slipping down the order. Pit stop dramas further compounded his race and he crossed the line P8.
Two second place finishes and a third over the weekend keep Craig in the championship mix with 256 points separating Lowndesy (1488 pts) and Winterbottom (1744) heading into next round at Sydney Motorsport Park.
After starting the Ipswich SuperSprint round in seventh, Jamie moves down to eighth with 1261 points after a ninth and fifth on Saturday followed by Sunday’s result.
JAMIE WHINCUP – Car No. 1
Qualifying Three: 4th (Fastest Lap – 1:10.0157)
Race Three: 8th
Championship: 8th (1261 points)
“We just didn’t have any pace today. We had plenty of other action going on in the pit stops. But it was a lack of pace today and we were a sitting duck from the beginning. I let Lowndesy through at the start as I didn’t want to hold up my teammate and he was able to get through so it was great for him to get up to second. I just slowly dropped back in the pack and thankfully the chequered flag fell on lap 65 as we had a few more cars closing in. We qualified well today and we should have done much better than eighth so I’m disappointed.”
CRAIG LOWNDES – Car No. 888
Qualifying Three: 3rd (Fastest Lap – 1:09.9087)
Race Three: 2nd
Championship: 2nd (1488 points)
“Overall I’m delighted with the weekend. We got the best out of it, the car speed is definitely improving but we know we’ve still got more work to do. To have three podiums over the weekend was sensational. A third and two seconds was more than what we could have expected. We’ve got a little bit of time before Sydney Motorsport Park next round, but it’s encouraging. There are a lot of good signs, we had good pace on the softs and good pace on the hards, and we were able to match the pace of the Prodrive guys over the course of the race so a lot of encouragement.”