Ford in-fighting hands Holden the title - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Ford in-fighting hands Holden the title

By Cameron Tomarchio 16/03/2008 03:42:44 PM Comments (0)

Brain explosions cost Ford dearly yet again on Sunday as Jamie Whincup and Mark Winterbottom took each other out during the V8 Supercars' Manufacturer's Challenge at Albert Park.

Holden secured the inaugural trophy by 2012 points to 1568 thanks in part to the dominance of reigning series champion Garth Tander, who made a clean-sweep of the three races.

But the trophy was gift-wrapped for the Red Lions' when scrapping among the leading Ford drivers ended in tears for the second time in three days.

On lap two of 16 Jamie Whincup and Mark Winterbottom were battling with another Ford driver, Will Davison, for second spot when they ran wide.

On attempting to re-enter the circuit, the pair battled for room and it was Winterbottom who paid the heaviest price, with steering failure and the impact of his crash into the wall ending his race.

Whincup was given a drive through penalty and also suffered a flat tyre and decided not to carry on.

Both drivers refused to accept the blame.

"I haven't seen the footage yet but people have told me he should have given me more room," said Whincup.

Winterbottom said: "He said he didn't see me and he came across and hit me. I was doing everything in my power to keep the car straight."

Winterbottom's team boss Tim Edwards labelled Whincup a "lunatic" after the tangle, angering the Bathurst champion.

"I am disappointed with the way the other team reacted and the comments that they made," said Whincup. "I'm not a lunatic."

Tander, who completed his perfect weekend with victory in race three on Sunday, said the Holden Racing Team Commodore was fantastic all weekend.

"We had three really good starts and we just put our heads down and tried to keep away from all the Ford blokes who just wanted to keep crashing into each other," he said.

Davison finished second in all three races to lead Ford's charge, fresh from claiming the first round win of his career at Sydney's Eastern Creek a week ago.

Holden's Rick Kelly, who finished third in race one and three, said Davison was the only Ford driver who properly embraced the concept, which pitted all of Holdens drivers against all of Fords with individual glory supposed to be insignificant.

The Challenge is a non-championship round so drivers were competing for bragging rights more than anything else.

"The Holden drivers reacted to the change quite well but the Ford drivers just fought," said Kelly.

"There was only one driver that had a good head on his shoulders and that was Will. Maybe he should drive a Holden."

The next round in the championship will see the debut of a street race in Hamilton, New Zealand from April 18-20.

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