A strong start to the 2014 Bathurst 1000 race where Scott McLaughlin was in the lead for the majority of the first half was changed into drama where both cars hit the wall.
”I am very disappointed with the result, we had a really strong car that was good enough to win the race,” said McLaughlin.
McLaughlin made an impressive start where he rocketed past Shane Van Gisbergen and Mark Winterbottom to take the lead into the first corner. The #33 Volvo S60 Polestar held the lead for the majority of the first half of the race with co-driver Alexandre Prémat making a strong run after the first pit stops.
The #34 Volvo S60 Polestar of Robert Dahlgren and Greg Ritter made strong progress in the first half of the race as well and was as high as fifth.
But disaster struck for both cars in the same corner, just four laps apart. Dahlgren made a mistake and hit the wall in The Cutting corner, meaning a retirement from the race.
”Everything went our way at first and Greg did a great job. We climbed from 20th on the grid and were definitely in for a top ten finish. Unfortunately I made a mistake that was really costly and I am sorry for the team,” said Dahlgren.
”We got the car better during the race and were trucking along quite well with a good position. Rob made a mistake which is pretty easy to do around here. But I was encouraged by our pace through the middle of the day and I’m looking forward to Gold Coast,” said Ritter.
McLaughlin got Van Gisbergen on the inside of him going into The Cutting on lap 119. The 21-year-old went wide and hit the wall, although without contact between the two.
”I didn’t know he was there until the last second and paid the price. I just got caught in the marbles, couldn’t back out of it. It was a fair move, but I couldn’t turn in or hang around the outside,” said McLaughlin.
The Kiwi was able to limp back into the pits repairs. After a massive effort by the team, McLaughlin was able to rejoin the race, albeit 11 laps behind the leaders and brought the car home in 17th position.
”I am of course disappointed, we could have finished on the podium. But I can’t blame Scotty, he has done a really good job and we can all make mistakes. It is part of racing and I am really happy about my stints. I look forward to next year’s Bathurst 1000,” said Prémat.
The 1000 kilometers of the 2014 Bathurst race was filled with ups and downs for Volvo Polestar Racing. While crashes ended the race, all four drivers showed strong form with McLaughlin and Prémat putting a strong challenge for the overall victory.
”It was a frustrating end to an exciting race. But we bring the positive points with us. The team made a fantastic job repairing the car mid-race, Scott continues to impress and we led almost half the race in our first year at Bathurst. We look forward to taking on the 2015 Bathurst 1000,” said Christian Dahl, owner of Polestar.
Race 30 – Top 5
1 Mostert/Morris Ford Falcon 161 laps
2 Moffat/Douglas Nissan Altima +4.0936
3 Percat/Gavin Holden Commodore +8.5254
4 Davison/Davison Mercedes E63 AMG +10.3839
5 Whincup/Dumbrell Holden Commodore +11.8703
17 McLaughlin/Prémat Volvo S60
Top 10 Shootout – Top 5
1 Shane Van Gisbergen Holden Commodore 2:06.3267
2 Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon +0.3122
3 Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 +0.4515
4 Jason Bright Holden Commodore +0.7164
5 Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore +0.7301
Qualifying – Top 5
1 Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore 2:05.6080
2 Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore +0.0931
3 Dale Wood Holden Commodore +0.6311
4 Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon +0.6476
5 Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 +0.7278
22 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 +2.6523
Practice 5 – Top 5
1 Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon 2:05.9011
2 Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 +0.2480
3 Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore +0.2733
4 David Reynolds Ford Falcon +0.3148
5 Chaz Mostert Ford Falcon +0.4832
25 Dahlgren/Ritter Volvo S60 +2.4163
Practice 4 – Top 5
1 Steve Owen Ford Falcon 2:06.7774
2 Luke Youlden Holden Commodore +0.0178
3 Alexandre Prémat Volvo S60 +0.1108
4 Taz Douglas Nissan Altima +0.4137
5 Dean Canto Ford Falcon +0.5313
15 Greg Ritter Volvo S60 +1.0614
Practice 3 – Top 5
1 Reynolds/Canto Ford Falcon 2:06.3714
2 Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon +0.1099
3 Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore +0.1749
4 McLaughlin/Prémat Volvo S60 +0.4385
5 Jason Bright Holden Commodore +0.4784
25 Dahlgren/Ritter Volvo S60 +4.0685
Practice 2 – Top 5
1 Greg Murphy Holden Commodore 2:08.5365
2 Steve Richards Holden Commodore +0.3055
3 Luke Youlden Holden Commodore +0.5838
4 Dean Canto Holden Commodore +0.6169
5 Tim Blanchard Ford Falcon +0.6681
8 Alexandre Prémat Volvo S60 +0.8004
19 Greg Ritter Volvo S60 +2.6366
Practice 1 – Top 5
1 Chaz Mostert Ford Falcon 2:08.0736
2 James Moffat Nissan Altima +0.2096
3 Garth Tander Holden Commodore +0.3375
4 James Courtney Holden Commodore +0.3936
5 David Reynolds Ford Falcon +0.3963
6 Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 +0.8434
25 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 +3.3608
Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 – V8 Supercars
Circuit: Mount Panorama Circuit
Length: 6213 m
Lap record (V8SC): 2:08.4651, Jamie Whincup, 2007
Championship positions – Top 10
1 Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore 2547 points
2 Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon 2250 (-297)
3 Craig Lowndes Holden Commodore 2208 (-339)
4 Shane Van Gisbergen Holden Commodore 2096 (-451)
5 James Courtney Holden Commodore 2096 (-451)
6 Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore 2024 (-523)
7 Chaz Mostert Ford Falcon 1994 (-553)
8 Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 1785 (-762)
9 Garth Tander Holden Commodore 1662 (-885)
10 Will Davison Mercedes E63 AMG 1542 (-1005)
25 Robert Dahlgren Volvo S60 663 (-1884)