Erebus Motorsport has proven they have speed, despite a mixed weekend at the Gold Coast 600.
After qualifying a provisional fourth in this morning’s 20-minute qualifying session, David Reynolds was able to advance through to third. His Shootout time of 1:10.9973 was good enough for pole position, before it was snatched by his Triple Eight rivals by just 0.1 second.
Good strategy and strong pace allowed Craig Baird to battle near the front and demonstrate the same pace in the race, that the team had shown throughout the entire weekend.
Baird battled with Lowndes, but kept it clean until the first Safety Car was deployed on lap 15, Baird taking his first stop before rejoining the field.
With some of the field opting not to stop under the yellow flags, the kiwi driver sat relative third while he was forced to find his way through slow traffic.
Baird jostled with Aaren Russell and made a move down the inside of Turn 12, however became unstuck with Russell spinning on the exit.
The #9 driver was handed down a Pit Lane Penalty and would ultimately rejoin the field P21.
Reynolds took the wheel for the final stint home on lap 58, and made his way up one spot to eventually finish in 20th place.
The team now set their sights on New Zealand, just two weeks away.
David Reynolds – #9 Holden Commodore
“I had a really good start to the day, put it fourth for the shootout, got to the shootout which was the first main objective and we ticked that box. I was really stoked about that and then I put a pretty good lap together; I beat McLaughlin’s time which put me provisional pole. The only cars to beat me were the Triple Eight cars and it wasn’t by much. It was really cool to see everyone in the pits so happy, it’s good to show we have speed, and if we can keep that up throughout the rest of the year I’ll be very happy.
“Bairdo started the race and he got a really good start, he had nice clean air before the safety car came out and we pitted him. He was in a battle with another car and tried to pass him but it didn’t come off and we got a drive through penalty which sucks. That was our day, we raced around to stay on the lead lap and finished 20th.
“The race pace wasn’t flash but it was good enough for top five easy. It was definitely a top five that we could have got today.”
Craig Baird – #9 Holden Commodore
“The day started really positive, as we’ve said all week the cars been fantastic and Dave’s qualifying and shootout lap was just mega. It put me in a really good place to start and I had a good start. The strategy changed a little bit with a safety car earlier on so it was going to stretch me out a bit further.
“There was a car out of sync in front of us and I put a pass on, I’ll put my hand up and take some responsibility for the pass. I saw the Russell car make a mistake at T11, I got half way up alongside him into T12 thinking he was in recovery mode and walking wounded because he hadn’t pitted for tyres, but Russell wanted to take the racing line. I was committed, and both drivers have to take responsibility for it. I was surprised to get a drive-through, I thought they may have considered he was already out of sync after making a mistake at the corner before and I had overlap.
“The most positive thing is that the car has been really strong, and everything is just working, so I think Dave is going to have a strong couple of races for the end of year.”