West Australian Dean Fiore was thetalk of Race 11, the Dodo Insurance Racing driver opting not to make a pit stopfor fresh tyres during the first of the day’s 100km races.
Fiore was on-track for a career-best performance,as well as his best result in a V8 Supercar at Barbagallo Raceway. But thetyres couldn’t hang on and Fiore was swallowed up by an angry pack in theclosing stages of the race.
“It wasn’t the initial plan – but the boyssaw how the race panned out and thought with the time lost potentially pitting,we thought we’d stay out,” Fiore said after Race 11.
How did the car feel towards the end? “Very bad! I just had absolutely no gripand was using different gears around the circuit and everything.”
Today’s last race, the 12th inthe Championship, is another 100km run, which will pose the same question– to stop, or not to stop.
Fiore isn’t sure what he’ll do for thefinal run in Perth.
“I don’t know (if we’ll stop or not)," he said.
“It depends how long you spend under SafetyCar as to whether you can do it and how much rubber you’ve saved.”
Fiore admitted it would have been great tohave stayed on track for a career best in Perth – his best performancehere was in 2011, having qualified 11th and finishing 15th in a race. His best ever finish was at Symmons Plains last month, where herecorded ninth.
“It would’ve been great (to have recorded a career best here). We start a bitfurther up this race (19th) so hopefully we have a decent result.
“The car’s good and strong.”
There’s been plenty of focus on Fiore’steam, Lucas Dumbrell Racing, after teammate Scott Pye’s huge accident twoevents ago in Tasmania. Once again Pye has had a reasonably big off, his Commodoreairborne after an altercation with two other drivers at the end of the firsthalf of yesterday’s 60/60 race. Today he managed 27th after another off-track excursion.
But while Pye has had all kinds of dramas,Fiore has been plugging away, recording career-best results. Fiore started theweekend 20th in the points but after today’s performance hasimproved to 19th.
Jamie Whincup took the points lead yesterdaywhen he finished second – Whincup won the first race today and startsthe final on pole.
Race 12, the final at Barbagallo Raceway, begins at 2.25pm local time.