Craig Lowndes was forced to concede places in the dying laps of today’s Supercars season opener as he ran dry on fuel.
Lowndes, who had started 13th, appeared to be headed for a sixth place finish before being forced to drive conservatively in the final three laps in order to make the chequered flag.
“Unfortunately there was a miscommunication on the fuel there which really hurt us,” Lowndes told Supercars.com after taking the flag in eighth.
“The last three laps I had to back right off which is why Jamie (Whincup) and (Nick) Percat got me.
“If we had fuel we would have been able to hold station and finish a bit further up.”
Lowndes is confident of a strong showing tomorrow after making solid ground from his lowly grid position.
Outside the top 20 in all three practice sessions, Lowndes’ 13th place grid slot for Race 1 came after a mistake on his hot lap.
“We’d made some changes overnight and learnt a bit more this morning, so we knew the car was going to be there or thereabouts,” he said.
“I think if we’d started further up there’s no doubt that we had a car that was good enough to be on the podium.
“We had good tyre life and the car was nicely balanced, it was just too hard to pass.
“The cars are so equal and consistent that it’s hard to get through if you qualify down the order.
“But I think if we can qualify better then we’re in good shape for tomorrow.”