Positive start for Minda in Dunlop Series

Rnd#1 Dunlop V8 Supercar Series
Clipsal 500, Adelaide - February 28-March 3, 2013

After a part-time debut in the 2012 Dunlop V8 Supercar ‘Development’ Series with their ex-GRM VE Commodore, Minda Motorsport added a second ex-GRM ‘main-game’ car to the stable for the 2013 series, and signed two drivers with previous Supercar experience.

Former Minda Formula Ford foe Cameron Waters - who the team managed during the 2012 running of the Shannons Supercar Showdown at Sandown and Bathurst - joined the team to drive chassis #10 - the 2012 Minda car - whilst former Development Series [DVS] regular Sam Walter joined the team behind the wheel of chassis #12. “There’s greater economics with running two cars, and after Sam bought chassis #12, it made sense from an infrastructure point of view, and our past experience with the GRM cars really made it a no-brainer for everybody concerned,” Minda Motorsport team principal Bruin Beasley admitted.

From opening practice both teams made a solid start, but admitted to not pushing too hard too early. “I would have liked to have been a bit quicker, but at the end of the day, Clipsal isn’t a circuit where you want to make an error,” Walter admitted pre-qualifying after having run inside the top ten early.

Post-qualifying there were smiles all round with Waters qualifying on the third row, just three one hundredths of a second off row two, whilst Walter improved his pace again to start on row eight. Despite the uncertain start to race one (the starter accidentally pressed the abort light after the start, but quickly rectified the problem - CAMSstewards electing though to let the race continue), Walters held position through the opening stanza of the race, whilst further back Walter was forced to rear of field off the start, because he saw the amber light displayed, which signaled an aborted start.. Having dropped to the back, he mounted a recovery, ultimately crossing the line a disappointed 22nd.

Further forward Waters was battling to stick with the leaders but held station for the bulk of the race before being turned around at turn nine late in the race. “It’s a pretty good result to start with,” he admitted afterwards. “We were lacking a little bit of race pace against some of the teams with newer equipment, but it’s the start we were looking for - top ten!” Off the fifth row, Waters used his V8 Supercar experience to move forward in the early laps into the top five, before being shuffled back in the closing laps after contact from behind at turn nine. Despite the setback he mounted a recovery in the closing stages to cross the line eighth, whilst behind him, Walters too was forced back early after running deep into turn four having been caught on the bumpy part of the circuit, before recovering to 18th with more valuable miles under his belt.“This is a two year program for me,” the Tasmanian admitted. “The car is undoubtedly an improvement on the Tasman car I drove in the past - but all the newer generation cars have improved over time.

I actually went a second faster than I’ve ever been around here before and we finished the event with a straight car, which can sometimes be difficult at Clipsal. Everything happened fairly quickly this year so we didn’t get much of a chance to prepare, but with any luck we’ll have a test day before Perth - which is a new circuit to me in a Supercar - and get some more laps behind me. “I’ve also got to look at changing my driving style for Perth too. In the Tasman car I could left foot brake, but these don’t seem to reward that style of driving, so I’ll spend some time learning to right foot brake again.”

“I’m happy with how the whole weekend worked out,” Waters admitted after race two. “I came into the event far better prepared than I’d ever been before in a Supercar, and far more comfortable behind the wheel - and comfort is critical at a circuit like Clipsal. “My goal this year is to continue learning, continue improving in the car, and to work my way up to being a regular top five contender.” And how was it working again with the team that were his toughest rivals during his Formula Ford Championship year.. “Great actually, I can see now why I had such a tough battle, Minda are a great operation and a fantastic team to be a part of, in fact the team atmosphere across Formula Ford, DVS and GT is fantastic, something I haven’t experienced like this before.”

For the Minda Motorsport squad their second round comes in Perth in Western Australia in two months time (3-5 May).

Rnd#1 2013 Dunlop V8 Supercar Championship

Clipsal 500, Adelaide, SA (28 February - 3 March)

Qualifying;

1. Chaz Mostert (FG Falcon) - 1:21.8474
2. Ashley Walsh (FG Falcon) - 1:22.2790
3. Dale Wood (FG Falcon) - 1:22.3379
4. Kristian Lindbom (FG Falcon) - 1:22.5932
5. Drew Russell (FG Falcon) - 1:22.6081
6. Cameron Waters (Minda VE Commodore) - 1:22.6237
7. George Miedecke (FG Falcon) - 1:22.6865
8. Andrew Jones (VE Commodore) - 1:22.6899
9. Aaren Russell (FG Falcon) - 1:22.7304
10. Daniel Gaunt (VE Commodore) - 1:22.7694
11. Geoff Emery (VE Commodore) - 1:22.8743
12. Casey Stoner (VE Commodore) - 1:22.8781
13. Sam Walter (Minda VE Commodore) - 1:23.2474

Race One (20-laps);

1. Ashley Walsh (FG Falcon)
2. Chaz Mostert (FG Falcon)
3. Dale Wood (FG Falcon)
4. Andrew Jones (VE Commodore)
5. Kristian Lindbom (FG Falcon)
6. Drew Russell (FG Falcon)
7. George Miedecke (FG Falcon)
8. Daniel Gaunt (VE Commodore)
9. Aaren Russell (FG Falcon)
10. Cameron Waters (Minda VE Commodore)
22. Sam Walter (Minda VE Commodore)

Race Two (23-laps);

1. Chaz Mostert (FG Falcon)
2. Dale Wood (FG Falcon)
3. Ashley Walsh (FG Falcon)
4. Kristian Lindbom (FG Falcon)
5. Taz Douglas (ARVO FG Falcon)
6. Aaren Russell (FG Falcon)
7. George Miedecke (FG Falcon)
8. Cameron Waters (VE Commodore)
9. Daniel Gaunt (VE Commodore)
10. Andre Heimgartner (FG Falcon)
18. Sam Walter (Minda VE Commodore)

Championship points (after one round of seven);

1. Chaz Mostert (288 points), 2. Ashley Walsh (279), 3. Dale Wood (267),
4. Kristian Lindbom (231), 5. George Miedecke (192), 6. Aaren Russell (186),
7. Taz Douglas (180), 8. Daniel Gaunt (174), 9. Drew Russell (174),
10. Cameron Waters (168), 18. Sam Walter (90).

2013 Dunlop V8 Supercar Championship - calendar

Rnd#1, February 28-March 3 - Clipsal 500, Adelaide, SA
Rnd#2, May 3-5 - Perth 360, Barbagallo, WA
Rnd#3, July 5-7 - Sucrogen Townsville 400, Queensland
Rnd#4, July 26-28 - Coates Hire Ipswich 300, Queensland
Rnd#5, August 23-25 - Winton 360, Victoria
Rnd#6, October 10-12 - Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, NSW
Rnd#7, December 6-8 - Homebush, Sydney, NSW