Ups and downs in Fujitsu V8 Supercars in Adelaide for McIntyre

Top New Zealand V8 driver John McIntyre has had an exciting, challenging weekend competing in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Series in Adelaide, Australia.

Driving the #93 Fujitsu Racing BF Falcon for Stone Brothers Racing, McIntyre came through practice and qualifying third-fastest in the 19-strong field for the Fujitsu series’ opening round on the Adelaide street circuit. McIntyre had the opportunity to drive the SBR Ford as the team’s recently-signed young driver Scott McLaughlin still needed to complete some requirements for his V8 Supercar race licence.

From the second row of the starting grid behind regular V8 Supercar drivers Steve Owen and James Moffat, McIntyre took advantage of a small mistake by Moffat to get through into second place.

“I didn’t have quite enough car speed to hold out Moffat who went on to finish second to Owen, but I was very happy to have a podium finish on the very demanding street circuit,” said McIntyre. “And it was great to know I’d be starting Sunday’s 24-lap race in third again.”

McIntyre admitted he got a bad start in the weekend’s second race.

“I was fifth going into turn eight – the fastest corner in V8 Supercar series where you’re usually doing well over 200 km/h through this sweeping right-hander – and tried to get a run on the car in-front but clipped the inside kerb and caused a crash.

“It was extremely disappointing for Stone Brothers Racing and our sponsors. I was another driver to be claimed by this famous turn eight! But it’s been a fantastic weekend and I appreciate the opportunity to contest another V8 Supercar event with the team.”

McIntyre was unhurt in the high speed crash and returns to New Zealand early in the week to prepare for the final round of the New Zealand V8 championship at the Taupo Motorsport Park.

“John McIntyre Racing will be looking to end the season on a high note, and coming fresh from the challenges of a hard-out street races, I’m fired up to do well.”

In Taupo, Johnny Mac joins the other BNT V8 competitors in two practice sessions and qualifying on Saturday 20 March and the final three races of the championship on Sunday 21 March.

McIntyre goes hunting for third NZV8 title in Taupo

John McIntyre heads to the final round of the New Zealand V8 Championship in Taupo this weekend, 20 and 21 March, with two goals. First, set pole position for the fourth time this season and second, use the advantage that comes with being on pole to underpin his drive to win his third NZ V8 championship title.

“We have the lap record on the tight Taupo circuit [a time of 1:36.607 McIntyre set in 2008] and we’ve qualified on pole three times already this season so we know we’re capable of doing it again in Taupo,” says the Nelson-based professional racing driver and team owner.

McIntyre is second on the points-table with 721 points, 131 shy of current leader, Queensland-based Kiwi racer Craig Baird. Do the maths and it’s completely feasible for John McIntyre, or any one of about five fellow competitors, to take the championship title by Sunday afternoon.

“We’ll be hunting down Craig, no doubt about it. The pressure on him will be intense,” says McIntyre who has just returned from Adelaide and the Clipsal 500 where he was driving for Stone Brothers Racing in their #93 Fujitsu Series V8 Supercar.

“Our preparation for Taupo has been really good,” he says about the Hawke’s Bay-based engineering team for John McIntyre Racing. “Having prepared the car so thoroughly, so intensely, before the last round at Manfeild in February after the crash in Timaru, we have had less to do preparing for this round then we normally do. Some very minor damage at Manfeild, where Craig and I enjoyed some of the best races I’ve ever had in my life, was easily tidied up.

“We expect to be quick and aim to score our fourth pole position of the season. As I said earlier, the intensity of the time I’ve spent racing with Stone Brothers Racing in V8 Supercars over the past six months has made a difference to how I prepare for and do well in the top ten shoot-out final leg of qualifying in the Protector Safety Falcon.

“With pole position, that will set things up as well as we can for Sunday’s three races.”

JMR is on-track during the official practice sessions for the NZ V8 class at 10:15am and 2:20pm on Saturday. The three-part qualifying session gets underway at 4:05pm. On Sunday, the first ten-lap race is at 10am, the second at 1.05pm with the final race of the championship series, a full reverse grid 20-lapper at 4:30 pm.

“JMR welcomes Amcor Packaging and Squawking Magpie Wines to our sponsor line-up, and as always, we thank our fans and the following sponsors for their ongoing support: Talley's, Castrol Edge, Protector Safety, Prime Explosives, Ford NZ, The Rock FM, Ideal Electrical, Websters Hydrated Lime, Avon City Ford, BP Ultimate, Dynamic Fluid Systems, Speedshow, Cookes Wirerope, Colorfast Signs and City Collision Repairs Napier.”

Fourth pole for Johnny Mac in Taupo’s NZV8 final

John McIntyre had the edge when it counted during today’s top ten qualifying shootout, taking pole position for the final round of the New Zealand V8 Championship in Taupo this weekend, 20 and 21 March.

McIntyre’s pole-setting time of 1:35.472 was just 0.026 seconds quicker than Craig Baird, who currently leads the championship with McIntyre holding second. Also within a whisker of McIntyre and Baird was defending champion Kayne Scott, who’s currently fourth.

“The entire team at John McIntyre Racing is naturally very, very satisfied to be on pole here in Taupo,” said McIntyre, from Nelson. “As far as we know, to set four poles in one season is a record in this championship, so that’s a decent achievement to notch up.”

During the both NZV8 practice sessions earlier in the day, McIntyre was second quickest – first to Baird, and then to Scott.

“Then we were quickest in all three elements of the three-part qualifying programme. It’s extremely tough; Craig and Kayne are right there too. We haven’t got the margin between us and the next closest we’ve had at other circuits this season.

“But we’ve achieved our first goal of being on pole here. This gives the team the best possible chance to score maximum points in this final round of the championship. With 131 points between us and Craig Baird, it’s certainly still possible to win our third title. We have the right car speed and we’ll be giving it everything we’ve got in all three races tomorrow.”

Johnny Mac has three races on Sunday – the first ten-lap race is at 10am, the second at 1.05pm with the final race of the championship series, a full reverse grid 20-lapper at 4:30 pm.

JMR thanks the team’s many thousands of fans and the following sponsors for their ongoing support: Talley's, Castrol Edge, Protector Safety, Prime Explosives, Ford NZ, The Rock FM, Ideal Electrical, Websters Hydrated Lime, Avon City Ford, BP Ultimate, Dynamic Fluid Systems, Speedshow, Cookes Wirerope, Colorfast Signs, Amcor Packaging and Squawking Magpie Wines and City Collision Repairs Napier.

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