A Hard Battle for WSR on First ANZAC V8 Race in NZ
Racing on ANZAC Day was always going to be a special time for all the drivers and crews of the V8 Supercars Championship.
The Wilson Security Racing Team, however, was not expecting to see their #17 Falcon look like something dragged out of a battlefield after the first 100km race of the ITM 500 in New Zealand today.
A packed schedule of one practice session, followed by Qualifying then into the race to commemorate ANZAC Day saw the DJR Falcons chase the right set up for the fast and bumpy Pukekohe race track. Scott Pye lined up in P19 with teammate David Wall three spots behind him. Pye had a slow getaway thanks to some clutch dramas but nothing like the drama that would unfold for David Wall in the famous DJR 17 Ford.
As the field snaked its way around the hairpin at the top of the track Wall was battling with Chaz Mostert who bumped him into Turn 9 then launched over the kerb in Turn 10 thumping into the rear of David and spearing him across the road and into the concrete wall on the outside of Turn 11. The hit was huge and thankfully Wall stepped out with nothing more than a sore thumb. The same could not be said for the Wilson Security / PAYCE Falcon with severe front and rear damage. Although the incident will be investigated by the race stewards, Team Principal Dick Johnson summed it up well speaking to Network 7. “I thought racing was about giving each other a bit of racing room in a corner like that. Clearly not for some” an obviously disappointed Johnson said.
With Wall out on the spot and a long Safety Car period to retrieve the Wilson Security Falcon, Scott Pye set about chasing down Michael Caruso whilst under pressure from Jack Perkins. The race proved uneventful for the final laps for Pye who came home in P18. Scott was confident the car could be tuned for Saturday and Sunday noting differences to Practice and Qualifying set ups.
The ITM 500 continues on Saturday with two 100km races followed by a 200km final on Sunday.
David Wall’s Falcon will not be able to be repaired in time for the weekend as the damage is too extensive to the chassis.
#16 – Scott Pye - Wilson Security Racing / DJR Falcon FG
“On the start line we seemed to burn the clutch out and it stated creeping. I had to push the clutch all the way in and sit there on idle so I lost a spot off the line but made it back on Lap 1. We made a big change to the #16 Wilson Security Falcon from Qualifying, which was in the right direction but I reckon a little bit too much for the race. It cost us a bit of speed here but most importantly we looked after the car, made sure it is straight and can now focus on the weekend. This was a small point’s race so we did get more points for the Championship.”
#17 – David Wall – Wilson Security Racing / DJR Falcon FG
“Into the first corner everyone was jostling for position as normal, so I let it calm down a bit then I had a good pass on Chaz (Mostert) at the hairpin then started to get going. He gave me a little touch up on the first left hander then must have bounced the kerb on Turn 10 and I got a lot more contact from him. I hit the little patch of wet grass which instantly turned the car sideways and into the fence we went. I feel really shattered for Dick, the sponsors and all the DJR boys as we are out for the weekend with a lot of work to fix the car before Perth.”