POLL: Who impressed you most at Symmons?
This week’s Pirtek Poll asks you to vote for the standout performer from the second event of the V8 Supercars season at Symmons Plains.
The weekend saw Red Bull Racing Australia continue its domination at the Tasmanian venue, extending its record to 15 wins from the last 22 races at the circuit.
Craig Lowndes and his #888 Holden proved the class of the field for much of the weekend, out-pacing his highly fancied team-mate Jamie Whincup.
A misjudgement through the opening turns of Sunday’s race blotted Lowndes’ copybook however, leaving Whincup to swoop on both the race and the championship lead.
While Red Bull set the ultimate pace there were a handful of other clear standouts, including the victim of Lowndes’ Race 6 mistake, David Reynolds.
Revelling in the new FG X model Falcon, Reynolds qualified among the top five for all three races, scoring impressive sixth and fourth place results on the Saturday.
Reynolds’ form showed that Prodrive Racing Australia will be more than just a two-car force this season.
Furthering that point was an outstanding performance from rookie Andre Heimgartner who, in his very first run in the FG X, proved a genuine top 10 contender.
Among the backmarkers while in the FG at Adelaide and Albert Park, the Kiwi qualified among the top dozen for all three races and, apart from an off in Race 5, drove beyond his years.
Chaz Mostert’s efforts are also worthy of a place in this poll as the 22-year-old rallied for a pair of top five finishers on what could have been a difficult weekend.
The #6 Ford was without its race engineer Adam De Borre for the meeting, leaving Prodrive engineering manager Nathaniel Osborne as a late fill-in.
Regardless, Mostert finished the weekend as Whincup’s only real challenger, taking his second podium of the year in Race 6.
Elsewhere, Will Davison and Erebus Motorsport failed to put ultimate results on the board but left Symmons Plains highly encouraged by the speed they had shown.
Turning around a horror start to the year, Davison qualified on the second row for two races, running as high as third in Saturday’s first race before the highly publicised incident with Courtney.
Our final nominee is Shane van Gisbergen. While the Tekno Commodore lacked the outright pace of its Red Bull rivals, the Kiwi looked every bit a title contender as he drove maturely to fourth, eighth and third in the respective heats.
The results marked a healthy improvement from his starting position on each occasion and ensured he sits less than 30 points off the championship lead heading into the break before Barbagallo.
Who was your standout driver of the Symmons Plains event? Vote now on this week’s Pirtek Poll.