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Preview: Winton 2015

Jamie Whincup – Car #1

“Winton hasn’t been kind to us the last couple of years. I’ve had a particularly tough run there and it’s become somewhat of a bogey track for us. We’ve been working hard to try and be more consistent as we just haven’t had the pace of the guys around us, but we showed in Perth that we’re still not quite there. Hopefully we can turn it around in Winton with everything we’ve learnt so far this year. Qualifying is going to be really important again as passing can be really tricky, especially in the 60km sprint races on Saturday. The team’s working hard to try and turn our recent Winton record around and we’ll hopefully roll out with a good car.”

Craig Lowndes – Car #888

“We’ve had mixed results at Winton in the past at a circuit that I know very well. I’m really excited this year to be going back there with Grant who’s had success there in the past and we’re going to try for my 100th victory as well. I think it’s been a bit of guesswork for us the last couple of years as we haven’t been able to maximise the tyre. This year we’ve had good consistency and I’m hoping that’ll carry through to this weekend at Winton.”

 

Since the inception of the Car of the Future in 2013, Red Bull Racing Australia and Winton Motor Raceway have not exactly seen eye to eye. It’s the only track at which we haven’t claimed a podium in the last two years, despite having clocked up eight race wins from 2006 to 2012, which ties us at the top of the leader board for most victories there with DJR.

The Victorian circuit is the test track for 19 of the 25 cars in this year’s field and five of the last six race wins have gone to the locals. That stat means little this year though as none of these teams have used their single test day yet.

Winton’s 12 slow corners combine to give the track the lowest average and top speeds of anywhere on the calendar and, with 65% of the winners having started from the front row of the grid, qualifying well is extremely important. Having said that though, Jamie can put his hand up to being the winner with the lowest starting position of all time there – in 2007 he started 20th in Race One and went on to claim victory.

 

Winton SuperSprint – Winton Motor Raceway

Circuit length: 3km

Circuit direction: Clockwise

Average speed: 131km/h

Maximum speed: 225km/h

 

2014

JW CL
Qualifying Race 1 14th 4th
Race 1 9th 8th
Qualifying Race 2 21st 23rd
Race 2 19th 16th
Qualifying Race 3 13th 5th
Race 3 10th 7th

 

Championship standings

1st – Craig Lowndes, 717 points

2nd – James Courtney, 665 points

3rd – Mark Winterbottom, 643 points

4th – Fabian Coulthard, 641 points

5th – Jamie Whincup, 630 points

 

1st – RBRA, 1347 points

2nd – HRT, 1260 points

3rd – Pepsi Max Crew, 1188 points

4th – BJR, 1070 points

5th – Jack Daniel’s Racing, 825 points