McLaughlin continues winning ways in Tasmania

Scott McLaughlin beats teammate Coulthard as Penske team runs roughshod over Australian series
Scott McLaughlin beats teammate Coulthard as Penske team runs roughshod over Australian series

An ill Scott McLaughlin has fought through pain to put the Ford Mustang back on top in Tasmania and further distancing himself from Jamie Whincup in the Championship fight.

McLaughlin, suffering from a heavy dose of the flu, had started from the front-row of the grid alongside Mark Winterbottom, who snared his first ARMOR ALL Pole since 2016, while Whincup had a horror day, finishing last after a flat tyre and broken front end.

The young Kiwi Champion took the lead from the start on the tight Tassie track and maintained position throughout. He was joined on the podium by Shell V-Power Racing team-mate Fabian Coulthard with Shane van Gisbergen in third ahead of Winterbottom.

Whincup’s pain extended McLaughlin’s Championship lead to 135 points over Chaz Mostert who is now second. Whincup, who finished last, dropped back to fourth in the Championship behind Coulthard.

It was McLaughlin’s sixth win of the season from seven races.

“I will have a good sleep tonight, watch a bit of footy and come back better tomorrow," a visibly ill McLaughlin said. “That was for Ford fans and our team. There has been a lot of stuff thrown at us but we just fight on. We are a strong group."

McLaughlin gets jump at start
McLaughlin gets jump at start

Whincup on the other hand was fit and healthy, but not the result the seven-time Champion wanted.

It was a forgettable day for the man who has won in Tasmania more than anybody when he made a mistake in qualifying which ended in a red flag and him being excluded from the session.

He was demoted to the bottom of that session, starting the race in grid position 15.

Whincup made up several places on the opening lap and was in the fight until he suffered the flat tyre and a broken front right axle, putting him well and truly out of the race.

“I must have run over a black cat or something," Whincup said “We went from bad to worse. We were back in the pack and had to have a go. It’s amazing how fast things can change in this game."

McLaughlin leads
McLaughlin leads

Winterbottom has claimed his first ARMOR ALL Pole with the IRWIN Racing Holden in his third event with Charlie Schwerkolt's Team 18, and took his first pole in exactly 1,000 days.

Winterbottom turned a 50.6920s aboard his Triple Eight-built Commodore in the third and final phase of knockout ARMOR ALL Qualifying to pip Scott McLaughlin by 0.004 seconds.

"It’s awesome. I’m a bit emotional, it’s been a while," Winterbottom said. "I’m so proud for Charlie, he’s been working his backside off to put this together. I’m lucky, it’s all falling into place and I get to play a part in it."

It also ended the run of pole positions for Ford's new Mustang in the 2019 season, in the seventh race. Winterbottom was passed by Van Gisbergen on the second last lap, denying the IRWIN team their first podium.

McLaughlin celebrates
McLaughlin celebrates

COULTHARD QUOTE: “No matter what they throw at us, this team digs in and gets it done. I couldn’t be prouder of everyone here at Shell V-Power Racing Team, we got the reward for the effort we’ve put it. We’ve had some rotten luck so far this year, but hopefully this is the point where it all turns around. We took a 1-2 here in 2017, and to take another one today is a credit to everyone."

MCLAUGHLIN QUOTE: “Yeah, today was pretty tough. I’ve definitely felt better, but there’s not much better medicine than a race win. I will have a good sleep tonight and come back better tomorrow. That was for Ford fans and our team. There has been a lot of stuff thrown at us but we just fight on. We are a strong group."

Results

POS NO. DRIVER TEAM BEHIND
1 17 McLaughlin T. D'Alberto Shell V-Power Racing Team +0.000s
2 12 Coulthard T. D'Alberto Shell V-Power Racing Team +1.764
3 97 Van Gisbergen Lowndes, Tander Red Bull Holden Racing Australia +4.818
4 18 Winterbottom S. Richards Preston Hire Racing +5.597
5 22 Courtney J. Perkins, W. Luff Mobil 1 Boost Mobile Racing +11.023
6 9 Reynolds W. Brown, L. Youlden Erebus Motorsport +13.616
7 14 Slade Blanchard, Walsh Brad Jones Racing +14.262
8 8 Percat Blanchard, Walsh Brad Jones Racing +18.508
9 99 A. de Pasquale W. Brown, L. Youlden Erebus Motorsport +19.620
10 55 Mostert T. Randle, Moffat Supercheap Auto Racing +20.007
11 6 C. Waters A. Davison, Caruso Tickford Racing +20.453
12 2 S. Pye J. Perkins, W. Luff Mobil 1 Boost Mobile Racing +20.955
13 5 Holdsworth T. Randle, Moffat The Bottle-O Racing Team +21.225
14 35 T. Hazelwood Bigmate Racing +29.148
15 34 J. Golding Wilson Security Racing GRM +29.680
16 33 R. Stanaway Wilson Security Racing GRM +30.248
17 15 R. Kelly B. Fullwood Nissan Motorsport +30.772
18 7 Heimgartner B. Fullwood Nissan Motorsport +33.129
19 23 Davison A. Davison, Caruso Monster Energy Racing +34.509
20 21 M. Jones G. Murphy CoolDrive Racing +40.635
21 78 S. De Silvestro Nissan Nismo +44.883
22 19 J. Le Brocq J. Webb TEKNO Woodstock Racing +1 Lap
23 4 J. Smith Drillpro Racing +1 Lap
24 3 G. Jacobson Nissan Nismo +1 Lap
25 88 Whincup Lowndes, Tander Red Bull Holden Racing Australia +2 Laps

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