Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes both secured solid Top 10 finishes for the Red Bull Racing Australia camp today after a tough weekend in Townsville came to a close on Sunday.
Jamie finished the day in fifth picking off Chaz Mostert right at the death, while Craig drove superbly to get himself from 23rd to ninth as the chequered flag fell.
Craig’s result means he remains second on the Driver’s Championship keeping the pressure on Mark Winterbottom who claimed back-to-back wins and leads Lowndesy by 248 points.
A difficult qualifying session saw both drivers miss the Shootout, but clever race strategy and a safety car on lap 21 helped to reshuffle the pack which allowed the Red Bull Holdens to strike.
“As I said at the start of weekend we were aiming for a Top 10 and so fifth was awesome,” said JDub who qualified 13th.
“We ground out all weekend and to be honest I couldn’t be happier.
“The results sheet in qualifying didn’t look good, but we found a massive gain in rear grip. It upset balance which meant we went slower, but we found a big gain which transferred into the race.
“There’s still a long way to go but there’s light at the end of the tunnel. It was the first race for a long time I actually enjoyed.
“It was proper racing and toward the end we chipped away so it was good to make up that extra spot on the last lap.”
Making up a remarkable 14 places, Craig still felt he had more to give as he stepped out of his No. 888 Commodore.
“At the start of the race we were mindful that we had a lot of work to do so we were looking after the soft tyre to begin with,” Lowndesy said.
“The hard tyre run was better today which is a good improvement and we moved to the soft tyre for the run home.
“Our pace was better than we had yesterday, being more consistent for longer, so we’ve obviously made some inroads that side of it.
“For where we started and to finish ninth, we achieved our goal to be in the Top 10.
“It would have been nice to be further up the field and hunt down a few more guys, but ninth was a good enough result today.”
Red Bull Racing Australia’s next hit out will be the Ipswich SuperSprint which runs July 31 to August 2.