Monroe Safety Ambassador Mark Winterbottom has returned to the top of the V8 Supercars championship standings with two wins from three races at Winton Motor Raceway just outside Benalla, Victoria, over the weekend.
Winterbottom and his Prodrive Racing Australia team dominated the weekend with the Monroe-backed driver’s fourth win of the season giving him a 12-point lead after four championship events.
Winterbottom started Sunday’s 200km feature race behind pole-sitter Chaz Mostert, inheriting control of the race when his younger teammate spun off into a tyre barrier.
With the road clear ahead, Winterbottom held off the advances of Holden racers Fabian Coulthard and Craig Lowndes to score his second win from as many days and continue a hot streak for his team and the Ford FG X Falcon.
“It was a great race and while we weren’t there 100 per cent, we brought it home and I was surprised by the pace we had, especially at the end,” he said.
“I thought the tyres were gone and they came alive and allowed me to manage the gap.
“Any win is great but to do it the way we did this weekend is truly amazing. It has never been done before and that is special.”
The weekend started out with Saturday’s two 60km sprint races, where in the first race Winterbottom shadowed home Mostert to claim second place in a one-two finish for the team.
However, a demon start saw Winterbottom get the jump on his teammate and withhold pressure from Nissan Motorsport’s Rick Kelly for the win.
“Everything was going well – we didn’t have the best practice and our setup wasn’t right but we started adopting Chaz’s settings bit by bit and that obviously paid off in the final race,” said Winterbottom.
“The big thing is the car is making sense, all the changes we do are working. We are qualifying well and that translates to high race finishes.
“Chaz is doing a great job over one lap and that is helping to drag us all forward. Any win is a great win and it was great for the whole team to enjoy such a successful day.”
The trio of wins in V8 Supercars and three wins for second-tier Dunlop Development Series entrant Cameron Waters saw the team become the first ever to clean sweep every championship series and Development Series win and pole position across an event.
“That was awesome… to clean sweep the whole weekend is brilliant for the team, both at the track and the workshop. We’ve been working hard and this is a great reward,” reflected Winterbottom.
Winterbottom will be looking to extend his championship points lead up north at the SkyCity Triple Crown at Darwin’s Hidden Valley Raceway from June 19 to 21.