Yokohama 160×600

Supercars – Rick Kelly gets top ten on the Gold Coast

Kelly Racing has had a big day on the streets of Surfers Paradise for the Vodafone Gold Coast 600, completing the first qualifying session and race of the weekend.

The team got off to a good start with André Heimgartner qualifying for the Top Ten Shootout in the Plus Fitness Racing car. While André wasn’t able to string together a clean lap, nudging the barrier at the first chicane, he was able to claim eighth spot on the grid for the race.

André and co-driver Bryce Fullwood maintained this position for the majority of the race and were up as high as sixth place early on. However contact with James Courtney put André into the wall and the damage was too significant to finish the race despite only four laps remaining. Rick Kelly was able to bring home the Castrol EDGE car in tenth spot after starting twelfth and narrowly missing the Top Ten Shootout. Rick and co-driver Dale were able to run a clean race and maintain good speed throughout the stints. A better qualifying performance tomorrow should see the duo deeper into the top ten come Sunday afternoon.

Garry Jacobson couldn’t thank his co-driver Dean Fiore enough after the stellar effort he put in during his double stint in the car. Dean’s experience on the streets of Surfers paid off as he pressured the other co-drivers that started the race and even the main drivers as he stayed in the hot seat well after his compulsory 34 laps. The pair were able to move up nine spots in the race.

Simona De Silvestro had a rough day in the Team Harvey Norman Supercar. While she was off the pace in qualifying, the car was quick in the race however a cool suit failure cost the crew extra time in the pits and put them down the order.

QUOTES Rick Kelly, Castrol Racing #15 : « Qualifying today went ok for us, we were a tenth off André who I think really maximised the package. Twelfth wasn’t too bad, it’s always tough to miss out on the shootout by under a tenth, I think a top ten time is in the car it’s just up to me to extract it. In the race it’s the same old story, in clear air we have really good pace, if you picked us up and put us further up the grid I think we could probably stay there with the pace but we just can’t move up to them and move past them, it’s a pretty standard story in Supercars. All in all it was a pretty good result, we have a few things that we want to work on with the car, that’s the challenge for us to try and improve it tomorrow, same as everyone else, we’ll just see if we can do a better job than they do. »

Garry Jacobson, Racing #3 : « I was stoked with our performance in today’s race considering where we started, I think Dean’s experience once again showed, he’s been around here for about ten years, you could see in the momentum he’s able to carry across the kerbs pressuring the other co-drivers in front of him, it was a ten our of ten performance. I feel like I’m getting there and learning the track a bit more, I need to focus on the braking and preparing for the big kerbs as you go through the chicanes, it’s a pretty tricky circuit to get right. But overall happy with our result today, to pick up around ten spots, I’m really grateful to have such a strong co-driver. »

Press release Kelly Racing


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