Melbourne V8 Supercars: Fabian Coulthard doubles up in race two
|By Edd Straw||Friday, March 15th 2013, 04:21 GMT|
Fabian Coulthard claimed his second V8 Supercars victory of the day in the Australian Grand Prix-supporting non-championship event in Melbourne.
The Brad Jones Racing Holden driver, who had charged from fourth to win the morning's first race, again had his work cut out after losing the initiative to Craig Lowndes in the pitstops.
Coulthard had pulled out a comfortable lead after a good start from pole position in the early laps, but when he headed into the pits at the end of lap three, he re-emerged behind Lowndes.
The Triple 8 Holden driver had briefly run third on the opening lap before being passed by team-mate Jamie Whincup and Will Davison on the run to Turn 3.
But after a rapid pitstop - marred by contact with Jason Bright when the pair clashed as they left their pit boxes - Lowndes soon emerged as best-placed of the early-stoppers. Lowndes was given a one-place grid penalty for race three for the incident.
This gave him the effective race lead ahead of Coulthard, but the New Zealander was soon on his tail and eventually took the lead with a great move around the outside at Turn 3.
Coulthard reclaimed the lead on track when first Shane van Gisbergen pitted and then Tim Slade, who had yet to stop, pulled over with an apparent engine problem in his Erebus Mercedes E63 AMG.
After that, Coulthard never looked seriously threatened, with Lowndes settling for a comfortable second ahead of Bright, and Davison a solid fourth.
BREAKTHROUGH FOR NISSAN
James Moffat gave the new Nissan Altima its best V8 Supercars result yet with a strong fifth place ahead of Scott McLaughlin, who put in an impressive charge after losing time at the start in a clash with Garth Tander.
Todd Kelly completed a good day for Nissan with eighth place behind David Reynolds. Van Gisbergen was an impressive ninth despite starting 26th as a result of retiring from race one with a gearbox problem.
Champion Jamie Whincup endured a difficult race despite at one stage being on course for third behind team-mate Lowndes, having passed Bright after the pitstops.
He was given a drive-through penalty for a safety infringement in the pits when he was spotted spinning up his wheels before being dropped from his jack and, after dropping to the back, lost further time when he ran through the gravel at Turn 3. Whincup ultimately finished 25th and last.
Results - 12 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Fabian Coulthard Brad Jones Holden 24m38.9131s 2. Craig Lowndes Triple 8 Holden + 2.1309s 3. Jason Bright Brad Jones Holden + 4.8875s 4. Will Davison FPR Ford + 14.6794s 5. James Moffat Nissan + 15.1337s 6. Scott McLaughlin GRM Holden + 15.6054s 7. David Reynolds Rod Nash/FPR Ford + 19.0084s 8. Todd Kelly Nissan + 19.1730s 9. Shane van Gisbergen Tekno Holden + 21.6430s 10. James Courtney HRT Holden + 22.1579s 11. Jonothan Webb Tekno Holden + 23.8646s 12. Mark Winterbottom FPR Ford + 27.8380s 13. Rick Kelly Nissan + 29.2584s 14. Michael Caruso Nissan + 29.5086s 15. Alex Davison Schwerkolt/FPR Ford + 29.7064s 16. Tony D'Alberto D'Alberto Holden + 30.0255s 17. Russell Ingall Walkinshaw/HRT Holden + 31.4344s 18. Lee Holdsworth Erebus Mercedes + 36.7153s 19. Dean Fiore Dumbrell Holden + 40.5788s 20. Tim Blanchard DJR Ford + 41.8414s 21. Scott Pye Dumbrell Holden + 42.1581s 22. David Wall Britek/BJR Holden + 42.3978s 23. Jonny Reid DJR Ford + 42.9018s 24. Maro Engel Erebus Mercedes + 44.3861s 25. Jamie Whincup Triple 8 Holden + 56.7257s Retirements: Tim Slade Rosenberg/Erebus Mercedes 9 laps Garth Tander HRT Holden 4 laps Alexandre Premat GRM Holden 0 laps