Race 28 2023 Repco Supercars Championship - Vailo 500 For the second year succession, the…
MEDIA RELEASE/Shell V-Power Racing Team – Photos: Velocity Magazine
Anton De Pasquale – No. 11 Shell V-Power Racing Ford
Practice 1 – 9th (Fastest time: 51.0568s)
Practice 2 – 2nd (Fastest time: 50.7452s)
Qualifying – 7th (Fastest time: 50.8360s)
Race 6 – 3rd (Fastest time: 51.7079s)
Will Davison – No. 17 Shell V-Power Racing Ford
Practice 1 – 2nd (Fastest time: 50.8516s)
Practice 2 – 8th (Fastest time: 50.8943s)
Qualifying – 5th (Fastest time: 50.8360s)
Race 6 – 5th (Fastest time: 51.6010s)
DAY ONE RECAP
In typical SuperSprint format fashion, Day One at Symmons Plains was a busy day on track for the Shell V-Power Racing Team. Two thirty minute practice sessions kicked off the event, where both Davison and De Pasquale got a feel for their Ford Mustangs straight out of the truck.
It was a positive start with Davison finishing Practice 1 second quickest and feeling positive about the cars setup. After a few setup adjustments, De Pasquale was able to convert his P9 from Practice 1 into P2 at the end of Practice 2.
Due to the short lap time of Symmons Plains, Qualifying would see the field split into two groups with the top eight from each session to progress. Davison headed out first in Group A and finished fourth quickest. In Group B, De Pasquale finished second quickest, missing top spot by just 0.03 seconds. Both drivers progressed to Part 3 of qualifying and went on to claim P5 (Davison) and P7 (De Pasquale) on the grid for the race.
Both Davison and De Pasquale got off the line cleanly to start Race 6, with Car No. 11 advancing one spot into P6. Davison immediately applied pressure on Mostert, getting down the outside of the Commodore at turn 7, however he was on the wrong side of the road to make the move stick. Eight laps in, Davison was staying with the front pack, just two seconds off the lead. The gap from Davison to De Pasquale behind opened to one second.
Lap 12 and the crew brought Davison in for his stop. The No. 17 received two rears before heading back out to clean air. Two laps later and No. 11 was brought in for its two new rear tyres. It was a quicker stop than Davison’s and as a result, De Pasquale re-joined just ahead of the No. 17.
Both Shell V-Power Mustangs showed great race pace, successfully undercutting both Waters and Mostert. With 20 laps to go, De Pasquale was effective P3 with Davison in effective P4.
On lap 28, Mostert was able to take advantage of fresher rubber and make a move on Davison at the second last corner. With 16 laps remaining, Mostert was slowly closing the gap to De Pasquale, with the margin hovering around six tenths.
Davison and De Pasquale were both able to hold their positions throughout the remainder of the race, with De Pasquale pulling away from Mostert who was applying earlier pressure. Davison closed the gap to Mostert however ran out of time to be able to get the position back. He crossed the line in P5.
De Pasquale advanced four spots in Race 6 and claimed his first podium for the Shell V-Power Racing Team, finishing in P3.
DE PASQUALE QUOTE
“I had a good start to the race and made up a spot which set me up well early. Once we came out of the pits in front of Will in clean air, I figured we were in a good spot as I knew he was in podium contention before our stops. Then as the race played out, our tyre degradation was good with the increased cloud cover so I felt comfortable that I could bring it home.
We’re still fresh in the team and we’re getting better and better each round so it’s really great to see the direction we’re heading in.”
“It’s been a good day. We’ve been competitive from the outset, rolling out of the truck strong. To qualify only a hundredth off the front row was a really positive sign and just reinforces how tight the margins are here at Symmons Plains.
All-in-all the race was pretty encouraging. Although the ultimate result was a little disappointing because we lost a little bit in the stop, our strategy and race pace was good which is promising for tomorrow.”
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