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20 November 2011

Frosty 2nd and Will 3rd

Ford Performance Racing (FPR) has secured its second double-podium finish in as many Sundays after Mark Winterbottom lead home Will Davison for second and third at the Norton 360 Sandown Challenge.
The result mirrored the places the team secured one week prior in Tasmania, though this time Winterbottom got the better of Davison on a day the factory Ford team again highlighted its recent progression.
Sun and mild temperatures provided teams with a chance to show their dry weather pace and all three FPR cars made clean starts and each held position on the opening lap.
Winterbottom started second, Davison sixth and Paul Dumbrell eighth after a solid qualifying.
Dumbrell passed Tim Slade for seventh on lap three to begin a push towards the front as he passed Will nine laps later for sixth began to pull away.
Up front Winterbottom was a close second to Jamie Whincup until he pitted at the end of lap 16 where the team performed a great pit stop and he almost jumped Whincup for the lead.
Whincup’s team released him into Winterbottom’s path and the pair made slight contact but both continued without issue.
Two laps later Dumbrell and Davison had cycled through to first and second as the pair elected to run longer first stints than the majority of the field.
Dumbrell pitted from the lead at the end of lap 22 for fuel and tyres, while Davison was the last car to stop one lap later.
The safety car was deployed for the first time on lap 24 to clear debris and by this time Winterbottom was second, Davison had jumped Dumbrell and was seventh while Dumbrell was eighth.
Dumbrell’s day was about to end as he was hit by Garth Tander at turn one on the restart. The impact caused left-front damage and forced him out of the race at the end of lap 27.
Davison rapidly moved from seventh to fourth as his strategy started to come into play.
Winterbottom made his final stop on lap 40 to take on fuel and tyres before Davison stopped at the end of lap 43 and took full advantage of the short fuel fill he required after his longer earlier stint.
He emerged third behind his team-mate and the pair ran in close formation until the safety car was again deployed on lap 47 before action resumed three laps later.
Winterbottom and Davison ran together for the remaining 15 laps and were able to fend off their pursuers.
The result gave the team its third double-podium in three events with Winterbottom now a clear third in the Driver Championship while Davison has closed on the fight behind Winterbottom.


Mark Winterbottom – #5 Orrcon Steel FPR Falcon
Qualifying: 2nd – 1m09.77s

Race 26: 2nd – Fastest Lap: 1m10.63s
Winterbottom championship position: 3rd – 2449 points
“We had a good day. We tried our best and tried to stay as close to the lead as we could but today shows we’ve made massive gains. Our car performance was pretty good and second and third was good from where we have come from. To have both Will and I on the podium and to have PD also being quick, it all shows what a great job the team is doing. We had a little understeer which we couldn’t quite dial out but we’ll keep working away and make thinks that little bit better.”

Will Davison – #6 Tradingpost FPR Falcon

 6th – 1m09.97s
Race 26: 3rd – Fastest lap: 1m10.55s
Davison championship position: 6th – 2345 points
“All things considered third is great. We have been marching forward on soft tyres in recent races though Sandown is a very different circuit and it shows that we can be competitive at places where tyre degradation is high. My strategy made the difference today so big thanks to my engineer Grant (McPherson) as we stayed out long and it allowed us to charge through after the first safety car. The whole last part of the race was tense given how tight it was between all of us. It was just great to be able to give the team back the podium I lost yesterday.”
Paul Dumbrell – #55 The Bottle-O FPR Falcon
 8th – 1m10.03s
Race 26: DNF – Fastest lap: 1m11.23s
Dumbrell championship position: 23rd – 1242 points
“We saw today that we are now a genuine contender on soft tyres, but sadly I couldn’t join Mark and Will on the podium. We made a clean start and picked our way through the field which was going to be a big help late in the race given how long we ran on our first set of tyres. While Will got to make the most of his strategy I didn’t as I made contact with one of the HRT cars in turn one on the restart. It broke something in the front-left of the car and my day was done. I’ve only got one more event left in my full-time career so I want to go out in Sydney on a high.”
Tim Edwards – FPR Team Principal
“Today was another great day for the team. A double podium for the second week in a row is a good reward for the team. To do it surrounded by so many of our colleagues from the workshop and relatives makes it even better. Frosty did all he could today so second was the maximum he could achieve. Will again used clever strategy to his advantage to make up for yesterday’s last corner loss, while PD’s race ended through no fault of his own. We have had a great run since the start of the enduros so our aim for Homebush is to lock away second in the team title and third in the drivers.”
1) Jamie Whincup – Triple Eight
2) Mark Winterbottom – Ford Performance Racing
3) Will Davison – Ford Performance Racing
4) Craig Lowndes – Triple Eight
5) Garth Tander – HRT
DNF) Paul Dumbrell – Ford Performance Racing
1) Jamie Whincup – Triple Eight: 3033 points
2) Craig Lowndes – Triple Eight: 2845
3) Mark Winterbottom – Ford Performance Racing: 2449
4) Shane van Gisbergen – Stone Brothers Racing: 2414
5) Garth Tander – HRT: 2388
6) Will Davison – Ford Performance Racing: 2345
23) Paul Dumbrell – Ford Performance Racing: 1242
1) Triple Eight: 5633 points
2) Ford Performance Racing: 4552
3) Stone Brothers Racing: 4108

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