TICKFORD RACING – MELBOURNE 400 SUNDAY REPORT
10 April, 2022
Tickford Racing concluded a challenging Melbourne 400 on Sunday at the Australian Grand Prix with Race 9 of the 2022 Supercars season, in which three of the team’s four Ford Mustangs encountered issues across the 20-lap sprint race.
Cam Waters (No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang) led the team home in the Melbourne finale, coming fourth across the line, but was relegated to seventh following a five-second time penalty for an unsafe release from his Race 9 pit stop. Waters exits the round seventh in the championship after a frustrating weekend at Albert Park.
Jake Kostecki (No. 56 Tradie Ford Mustang) was the sole Tickford car that didn’t encounter an issue in Race 9 on Sunday, with the 22-year old putting in a solid and relatively straightforward race on his way to 13th at the chequered flag, up six places from his 19th place starting spot.
After starting 10th, James Courtney (No. 500 FLEX Ford Mustang) was forced to pit twice in Sunday’s Race 9 after a flat spotted tyre began to fail on Lap 16. The second stop dropped Courtney down the order to an eventual 22nd place finish in the weekend’s last Supercars race.
Rookie Thomas Randle (No. 55 Castrol Racing Ford Mustang) notched his best career starting spot with fourth for Race 9, but was forced to retire from the Sunday contest due to a steering issue that arose mid race. Despite efforts from the crew to remedy the issue, a solution could not be found in time for the Castrol Racing driver to be classified at race’s end.
The Supercars Championship returns to action at the end of April with its highly-anticipated return to Western Australia, with the Perth SuperNight taking place April 30-May 1 at Wanneroo Raceway.
No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang
Race 9 Start: 5th
Race 9 Finish: 7th
“Today was okay, we definitely made some in roads with the car and our race pace was better, which was nice, but we didn’t have enough to get past the DJR cars in front of us. We had five seconds tacked on for an unsafe release in the pit stop, which unfortunately is just how this weekend’s gone. We’re pretty frustrated with the results, but grateful to the crew who worked hard all weekend and had some good stops. We’ll have a look through everything this week and get it tuned up for Perth in a few weeks.”
No. 55 Castrol Racing Ford Mustang
Race 9 Start: 4th
Race 9 Finish: DNF
“Obviously I’m pretty gutted to not get a result out of that race. It was really exciting to start on the second row and to mix it up at the front of the field, but unfortunately in the stop the right front didn’t want to come off so we lost time and track position, and not long after that something started going on with the steering. We tried a few things to fix it but it was gradually getting worse to the point we didn’t want to risk being out there and having a shunt. It’s a really disappointing way to end the weekend, but the Castrol Racing was quick, and we’ll look to have it going a bit quicker by the time we get to Perth in a few weeks.”
No. 56 Tradie Ford Mustang
Race 9 Start: 19th
Race 9 Finish: 13th
“Today’s race wasn’t too crazy for us, kind of the same as yesterday, we just stayed out of trouble, had a good car and a good stop and picked up six spots to come home 13th. If we had qualified better we would have been higher up, but the positive thing is I think we improved the car quite a bit from the start of the weekend, I definitely felt more confident in the car as we went. It probably went a little unnoticed after we qualified so poorly, but I think we have a little momentum out of this weekend which is good. Hopefully we can keep that rolling into Perth in a few weeks, obviously being my home race I’d love to put on some good runs there.”
No. 500 FLEX Ford Mustang
Race 9 Start: 10th
Race 9 Finish: 22nd
“It was a pretty tough one, straight from the start the clutch issue we thought we fixed last night came back, so I lost a heap of spots off the start, and some more time at the first stop. Then later on I had a big lock up at Turn 11 that flat spotted a tyre, and eventually the tyre started to delaminate from the damage so we had to stop again. It’s really frustrating, just a weekend where nothing seemed to go right, which after the speed we had in qualifying it’s disappointing to come away with nothing to show for it.”
Tim Edwards, Team Principal
“Certainly that wasn’t the race, nor the weekend, we were hoping for. We definitely had better pace than the results indicate, but speed doesn’t pay points by itself, and unfortunately we had too many things go wrong this weekend to get the results we should have, a lot of them out of our control. If there is a silver lining it’s Jake and the Tradie Racing crew, they had a disastrous start with Jake’s crash but after starting in the back all weekend they made good strides and moved forward. Like I said we’re better than the results showed this weekend, so we’ll regroup and look to make a good step forward when we head to Perth.”
SUPERCARS DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP
1) Shane van Gisbergen – 803 points
2) Anton de Pasquale – 659
3) Chaz Mostert – 641
7) Cam Waters – 521
14) James Courtney – 419
23) Thomas Randle – 262
24) Jake Kostecki – 261
SUPERCARS TEAMS’ CHAMPIONSHIP
1) Triple Eight Race Engineering – 1364 points
2) Dick Johnson Racing – 1281
3) Walkinshaw Andretti United – 1032
5) Tickford Racing (5/6) – 940
12) Tickford Racing (55/56) – 523