2010 V8 SUPERCAR CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES - RACE 18
Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, Mount Panorama, Bathurst, New South Wales
THE KEY POINTS
Date: October 7-10, 2010
Circuit: Mount Panorama, Bathurst
Race Format: 1 x 1000-kilometre race on Sunday
TV Coverage: Channel 7 nationally on Friday October 8 (1.00-4.00pm), Saturday October 9 (12.00-5.00pm) and Sunday October 10 (7.00am-6.00pm)
Ford's factory-backed V8 Supercar team, Ford Performance Racing (FPR), will be pulling out all stops this weekend in an effort to claim their first ever Bathurst 1000 win.
Coming off wins in Darwin, Townsville and a strong second place at Phillip Island, FPR are keen to maintain their winning form.
"Things are looking pretty good going into this weekend," FPR Team Principal Tim Edwards demurely said.
"Our recent results are the reward for a lot of hard work by everyone in the team and now we're pointing in the right direction there's a real hunger for more.
Our spirits and confidence is up which is everything in this sport ... and knowing that we can find that extra speed we need, we're going into this weekend as best prepared as we could wish for," Edwards added.
FPR's charge will be lead by Mark Winterbottom who currently sits in third place on the V8 Supercar championship points table.
Frosty will be looking to shatter the championship hopes of fellow Ford racer James Courtney and Holden driver Jamie Whincup.
"It sounds like a cliche but I don't think I've ever looked so forward to a Bathurst 1000," Frosty said.
“This year feels really different ... we're heading into the weekend on a high, great momentum ... everything is coming together at the right time so everyone's pretty pumped," he added.
As was the case in the L&H 500 at Phillip Island, each team is now no longer permitted to 'pair up' their two Primary Drivers in the same car, so Frosty will again team up with enduro specialist Luke Youlden in the Orrcon Steel FPR Falcon.
"Luke's doing an awesome job as usual which definitely makes life easier... we just can't wait to get up there," Frosty said.
Youlden's second place in the L&H 500 at Phillip Island was his third V8 Supercar podium finish, after finishing second in the 2003 Sandown 500 with Steve Ellery and then third at Bathurst in the same year.
A former Formula Ford Champion and Fujitsu Series runner-up, Youlden is making his 11th Bathurst 1000 start and has five top-10 finishes. Amazingly, he has never driven in a V8 Supercar sprint event, only the endurance races, and knows all about helping a driver win a V8 Supercar championship - being co-driver to Russell Ingall at the enduros when Ingall won his title in 2005.
"Like Frosty I'm feeling pretty good about this weekend," Youlden said.
"Phillip Island set the scene ... I'm comfortable in the car and being paired up with someone like Frosty is a boost from the get-go ...we're better prepared and obviously more confident than previous years so we're all fired up."
Across the garage in the Dunlop Super Dealer FPR Falcon a famous name makes its return to Mount Panorama in the form of James Moffat, son of four-time Bathurst winner Allan who won the race in 1970, 1971, 1973 and 1977 and last competed in a Ford Sierra RS500 in 1988.
Moffat Jnr has competed in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series at Bathurst for the last two years but this year is his debut in the main race on Sunday.
"I suppose you could say this weekend is the realisation of a dream," Moffat said.
"For as long as I can remember I've always wanted to drive in the main race ... so to finally get here feels pretty good," he added.
"I've got a pretty full schedule with my DVS drive on as well but the more track time the better ... it's such an awesome place so to get a double dose of it is a bonus."
Moffat will be paired with two-time winner Steve Richards in the #6 Dunlop Super Dealer Falcon, and is the best-credentialed of the four Bathurst 1000 rookies in the 2010 field.
"It's hard to describe the emotions of this week," Richo said.
"This is our premiership match if you like, so you have an enormous amount of nervous energy, anticipation and excitement.
"No matter how many times you've been here, you never really know what to expect ... from any perspective, it's the ultimate test of your preparation and this year I think we've nailed it," Richo optimistically concluded.
Festivities for the Bathurst 1000 kick off on Wednesday with the cars hitting the track for their first practice session on Thursday morning.
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