Waters praises engine tweak after breaking pole drought
Saturday 17th June, 2023 - 1:43pm
Cameron Waters has attributed his drought-breaking pole position at the Betr Darwin Triple Crown Supercars event in part due to the new Ford engine map.
Waters set the fastest two laps of Qualifying for Race 13 at Hidden Valley, a 1:05.9986s in Part 2 and then a 1:05.9027s in the third and final segment of the knockout session.
The Tickford Racing driver was the most prolific pole-sitter in 2022, scoring 10 in total, but that which he took on the penultimate day of that season was his most recent until today.
It is also just the third of 2023 for any Ford driver, following those for Grove Racing’s David Reynolds in Newcastle and Dick Johnson Racing’s Anton De Pasquale at Albert Park.
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This weekend at Hidden Valley, the Ford Mustangs are running with another new engine map, an evolution of the ‘V3 Test’ calibration which was trialled during practice in the previous event of the season at Symmons Plains.
Waters also performed engine map validation on behalf of Supercars and Ford/Herrod Performance Engines at a damp Winton between events, notwithstanding that Tickford abandoned its test day.
“It’s just a lot of little things,” he said about what made the difference today.
“We haven’t changed the car a lot since Tassie but just tweaking it, understanding the package.
“We didn’t get a test day, which we thought may have hurt us, but we just kept it simple this weekend and it’s paying off.
“A couple of the engine things are helping us out with driveability as well, so we’re getting closer every time we get on the track.”
Tickford and Waters did roll the dice during Qualifying for Race 13, however, sneaking through the first stanza in 20th position at just 0.0106s above the cut.
“I know we ended up 20th,” he said.
“I don’t know the times, I don’t think I want to know, but we only ran one set, trying to save a set for the next two, and it paid off.
“The car’s really pacey, it’s a lot nicer then than it was yesterday, so hopefully it’s a good race car.”
About race running, he said, “I think everyone is a little bit concerned, up and down pit lane.
“[Tyre] Deg’s pretty high, so far. On Lap 2, Lap 3, you’re bleeding a lot of time, so it’s going to be interesting out there and hopefully it’ll open up strategy a little bit, and hopefully we can get it right.”
The 15 Chevrolets in the field are back on their original map after complaints about a new map which was tried in Practice 1.
This afternoon’s 35-lap race is due to start at 15:25 local time/15:55 AEST.