Team 18 kicked off the 2022 Repco Supercars Championship with a difficult outing in Race 1 at Sydney Motorsport Park with a 16th place for IRWIN Racing’s Mark Winterbottom while Scott Pye’s #20 Seiko 5 Sports Commodore failed to finish.
Qualifying was held in dry conditions in the afternoon which saw Pye and Winterbottom qualify 12th and 13th on the grid for Race 1. The Team 18 cars, who were split by only two-thousandths of a second, missed out on a top ten shootout berth by less than a tenth of a second.
Pye’s race was put to bed early after a power steering failure. Pye pitted immediately for repairs and the team rushed to work to repair the car and return it to the track, completing 32 laps before retiring in the closing stages.
Winterbottom’s race was impacted early with a sticking throttle issue and battled tyre life towards the end of the race, however banked a solid points finish in 16th.
Team 18 returns to the track tomorrow for Qualifying at 10:50am and Race 2 at 2:30pm live on Channel 7 and Fox Sports.
RESULTS & QUOTES
Mark Winterbottom, driver #18 IRWIN Racing Holden ZB Commodore
Qualifying: 13th (1:30.6461)
Race 1: 16th (Fastest Lap: 1:32.5387)
“We finished Race 1, it was dry surprisingly and it’s raining really heavy now but it was a tough race.
“I got belted around at the start and then battled with a stuck throttle under brakes which made it pretty challenging.
“We still have lots of potential, I think yesterday we had a great day in practice but today we didn’t deliver.
“We’ll regroup, there’s no doubt tomorrow is going to be wet so we will go again and try our best but not the way we wanted to start the season.”
Scott Pye, driver #20 Seiko 5 Sports Racing Holden ZB Commodore
Qualifying: 12th (1:30.6441)
Race 1: DNF (Fastest Lap: 1:33.1328)
“It was a disappointing day, we had a hose in the power steering system let go which is pretty frustrating, another bad luck day for all of us here.
“The boys got it fixed and when I got back out on track it was fine mechanically.
“Everyone is working their backsides off and not getting the results we deserved including right up to the top with Charlie working with all of our partners.
“We want to put on a show and we’re here to do the best job we possibly can but we can’t take a trick at the moment and hopefully we can reward everyone with some great results very soon.”