Nelson and I have been enjoying the week in far north Queensland before we tackle the second Supercars weekend at Townsville’s Reid Park circuit. The Robson Civil Townsville SuperSprint is pretty much a carbon copy of last week’s format, with one race on Saturday and two races on Sunday.
The first Townsville event wasn’t too bad for us as a team and was definitely a step up from our performance last year at this circuit.
It was disappointing to have an engine failure on Saturday and lose championship points, especially after qualifying in the top ten. But Sunday I finished fifth and fourth in the two races so that helped recover some championship points. My teammate Todd (Hazelwood) had some good speed in that last race too, so I think as a team we have genuinely made a step forward in race pace. We’ve been to enough different tracks by now, and we’ve been qualifying and racing at the front, so I think that’s where we belong.
Our engineering group came away from the first event feeling pretty confident that we can make the cars a little better for this weekend. One of the advantages of the double header rounds is that we can debrief and think about what we could do better, and then get to test these theories the next weekend, instead of waiting a year to go back to the same circuit!
We’ll only make some small adjustments to help Car 8. It’s a fine balance; you don’t want to chase too hard because it’s quite easy to fall out of that sweet spot and de-tune the cars. We were chasing a bit of front grip so we’ll try to put a but more of that into the set up.
My aim is to be in the top four in the championship at season’s end. Right now, I’m sitting sixth and it is extremely tight and difficult to break into that top five, but I think we’ve got a good package to be able to do it.
From Townsville onwards it’s going to be pretty full on, going to Tailem Bend for a double header and then to the Bathurst 1000 for the finale. I can’t wait, but first I need to get through this weekend and then Nelson and I will jump in the car and drive to Adelaide. It will nice to see my parents, (although they’re probably more excited about seeing Nelson than me to be honest).
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