Texas a Roaring Success: Whincup

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 20/05/2013
  • By V8 Supercars

The Austin 400 in Texas has received a unanimous vote of approval from more than 5000 Australian fans, an even bigger contingent of locals and V8 Supercar drivers.

The event hosted 68,891 people across the three days that was mostly dominated by Red Bull Racing Australia's Jamie Whincup. He won one of the two races today to couple with two victories on Saturday in his VF Holden Commodore.

Lockwood Racing's Fabian Coulthard scored the other race win of the weekend. VIP Petfood's Shane van Gisbergen was the other podium getter today.

With a combination of new initiatives for next year to spice up the racing Whincup has no doubt the event has a very long future in Austin, a sister City of Adelaide. Almost the entire Championship and the visiting Australian fans plan to see more of America in the next week or two.

Whincup heads to the Grand Canyon and Alcatraz as part of his US adventure while others are going to wide reaching parts of the US, and many to next weekend's Indianapolis 500.

He was ecstatic with his on-track victories and just as happy with the event itself.

"I certainly enjoyed it. Whenever we go overseas the locals really look after us and put on a good show. This was a great event and I always seem to like to step up when the quality was high," Whincup said.

"The number is a very good indication that it went well. We will change it up a bit, maybe throw some soft tyres on and take the mufflers off. We can do plenty of things for next year to spice it up. It was a good learning experience; I couldn't be happier.

"Everyone enjoyed it. All the autograph queues were 50-50 locals to Aussies which was great. It was highly enjoyable."

Circuit of the Americas President and CEO Steve Sexton said the outcome of the weekend was extremely pleasing.

"We would like to thank our fans, employees and vendors; the V8 Supercars series managers, teams and drivers; the Pirelli World Championship family; and our incredibly accommodating host city of Austin for helping us stage another spectacular event," Sexton said. 

"V8 Supercars lived up to its billing for dynamic racing and a fan-friendly environment-and we had some die-hard fans here given the very warm temperatures. Our Australian visitors were good sports and loads of fun, and we're glad that people from around the world had a chance to visit Central Texas and our new state-of-the art facility."

Coulthard's race victory remained in doubt until after the day had finished when he was investigated for illegally breaking away from the pack under the Pedders STP Chrysler 300C Safety Car. He all but admitted the error although believes it was a radio problem.

"I admit that I did pull away. I heard 'green flag' over the radio and then 'no, no, no'. I did the best I could but I tried to make it that I bunched up again to make it fair," Coulthard said.

"It was a radio communication problem within our team. We have had to change frequencies a few times over the weekend as I have been hearing two people on the radio."

Will Davison went into the weekend Whincup's nearest championship challenger, but he left the Circuit of the Americas having lost second place.

Davison failed to finish the fourth race won by Whincup after an early tangle with Holden driver Scott McLaughlin wrecked the right side of his car. He finished fourth, ninth and 12th in the weekend's other races. 

That allowed Whincup to skip away to a 142-point championship lead, and teammate Lowndes to leapfrog Davison into second place on a successful weekend for Red Bull Racing.

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