After being in the championship fight, Winterbottom ultimately finished the year in third place behind the TeamVodafone duo of Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes. In a close contest Winterbottom finished on 18 votes with three-time recipient Lowndes on 16, tied with emerging star David Reynolds, who finished on the rear bumper of Whincup at Bathurst.
“It’s a great honour, it does somewhat make up for the year that was,” said Winterbottom.
“To be recognised by the media as not only a competitive driver but one that has their respect is a nice thing to know after what was a solid but frustrating year in the way it turned out.
“It has been a challenging year with the ups and downs that have made the difference between fighting for the Championship or second and third.
“I clearly had a shot, a real good chance, but just couldn’t get there. They just did a better job and we’ll have to lift again next year. It hurts but there’s nothing you can do about it. You just have to move on.”
Foundation Chairman Tony Cochrane became the first non-driver to be included in the Hall of Fame for his contribution in building the sport for the past 17 years.
Cochrane had been Executive Chairman of and the driving force behind V8 Supercars since its inception in 1996. He stepped down from his role as Executive Chairman in September.
In the other awards Monster Energy Racing’s Scott Pye took the coveted Mike Kable Trophy as the rookie of the year following his enormous success in the Dunlop Series.
Scott McLaughlin won the Dunlop Series Championship which went down to the wire at the Sydney Telstra 500.
Holden won the Manufacturers Award following their dominant season with TeamVodafone in the last time the Red Lion will do battle alone with Ford. Nissan and AMG join the gird in 2013.
The Award Recipients:
|Hall of Fame Inductee||Tony Cochrane|
|Best Volunteers Group||Dick Smith Sandown 500|
|Event of the Year||Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000|
|Armor All Pole Position||Will Davison : Trading Post FPR Falcon|
|Armor All Best Presented Team Award||TeamVodafone|
|Champion Manufacturer of the Year||GM Holden|
|Most Improved Award||Car #55 – David Reynolds : The Bottle-O Racing Team|
|Privateers Cup||Luke Youlden|
|Mike Kable Young Gun Award||Scott Pye : Triple Eight Race Engineering|
|Dunlop V8 Supercars Series Champion||Scott McLaughlin : Fujitsu Racing|
|Bathurst Champions||Jamie Whincup & Paul Dumbrell : TeamVodafone|
|Champion Team of the Year||TeamVodafone|
|Barry Sheene Medal||Mark Winterbottom : Orccon Steel FPR|
|V8 Supercars Championship Third Place Driver||Mark Winterbottom : Orccon Steel FPR|
|V8 Supercars Championship Second Place Driver||Craig Lowndes : TeamVodafone|
|V8 Supercars Champion||Jamie Whincup : TeamVodafone|