After two poor races for the Shell V-Power duo of Anton De Pasquale and Will Davison, they managed to finish the weekend on a high placing 4th and 2nd respectively as SVG took out the win in both Saturday races.
Meanwhile Hino Racing’s Scott Pye scored a season-best fourth place finish in Race 7 of the Beaurepaires Melbourne 400 at the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix.
The penultimate day of on-track action saw two races for the team to tackle.
Starting in 12th and 13th respectively, Pye and IRWIN Racing’s Mark Winterbottom had a clean start in Race 7 before a safety car was called on Lap 5, forcing the team to pit both cars at the same time.
Pye swapped from the Dunlop Soft Tyre to hards and rejoined in eighth, while Winterbottom swapped from hards to softs and then pitted a lap later to put a set of hards back on for the run to the finish from 19th position.
Another safety car on Lap 10 saw Winterbottom pit and put softs back on as he charged from 19th up to 13th place at the finish.
Pye moved forwards to sixth position after the safety car restart and crossed the line in fifth after Mostert and Courtney clashed at the final corner. Pye was then promoted to fourth position after a post-race penalty for Mostert to register his best finish of the season to date.
Race 8 saw the team impacted by a major radio issue from the outset, with minimal communication between the drivers and the garage.
Pye was pushed off the track at the first corner and dropped to the back of the field. Pye dropped into the pit lane with a puncture at the end of the first lap without communication, as the crew rushed to perform the stop.
Winterbottom made a great start and ran as high as seventh before he also arrived into an empty pit box as the crew rushed to service the IRWIN car, finishing back in 17th position.
Pye dropped a lap down and circulated in the leading pack for the remainder of the race, resetting the Albert Park lap record at a 1:46.0060 in the process.
“Great start to the day with P4. We showed some amazing speed in both races today and certainly cemented ourselves as a top five in terms of car speed.” Pye said.
“In the second race we weren’t able to show that, it didn’t go to plan with contact at Turn 1 and I didn’t have a radio either, so no radio meant I couldn’t communicate to the team which meant I arrived unexpectedly in the pit lane which caught everyone off guard.”
“I got put out in front of the leaders and we ran with them for the whole race. I ran in what was p5 but not effectively P5, and I was able to lay down some good times and try some things inside the cockpit which I will hopefully be able to use tomorrow to my strengths, but after that we had to pit again and finish on the soft tyre.”
“Luckily they’re only 75 point races, a great start to the day, just not how we wanted to finish.”
Shane Van Gisbergen who took both wins of the day clearly chose “cool” as his word of the day for summing up his day.
“The car was a jet today. Our pace wasn’t so much there with the soft tyres, but we were so quick on the hard tyres. I’ve never had such good pace, so that’s very cool. The track is really cool to race on as well, and there’s some fun places to pass.”
“You can do some bombs, or some switch-backs, but overall the track is awesome to have some cool battles on. I guess some of the drivers further down are having some dramas which is a shame because there seemed to be a few crashes today, but up the front it’s really good racing.”
“I’m really looking forward to the race tomorrow and hopefully cap off a good week for the team.”