August 27, 2013
Winton, Australia (August 26th, 2013) - Nissan put itself on the V8 Supercars map in the Winton 360, held at Winton Motor Raceway on the weekend, claiming its first race win in its return season to top-level Australian touring car racing.
#360 James Moffat / #36 Michael Caruso
#360 James Moffat
James Moffat took his and the Nissan Altima's first race win in the V8 Supercars Championship on Saturday - the first Australian Touring Car race win for Nissan in 21 years since Mark Skaife led home teammate Jim Richards in the mighty Nissan Skyline GT-R (R32) at Oran Park on 21 June 1992.
To make the momentous occasion even better, Moffat led fellow Norton-backed teammate Michael Caruso across the line, scoring a memorable one-two result for Nissan.
The win came after a strong qualifying performance that saw Caruso claim second place on the grid behind three-time series' champion Jamie Whincup. The qualifying result was a personal best for Caruso. Moffat started the race from third.
Whincup led the opening stages of the 40-lap 60/60 Super Sprint race, only to suffer a mechanical problem early on. Caruso led home in the first part of the race, but at the re-start Moffat got the jump and led the remaining 20 laps.
Sunday's two races were not as rewarding for Nissan Motorsport, but the encouraging signs remain for the squad as it heads to the all-important endurance races at Sandown, Bathurst and the Gold Coast.
Moffat continued his good form on Sunday, finishing 11th and eighth and moving up to 13th place in the championship - the highest of the four Nissan Altima drivers. Michael Caruso failed to finish either of the day's races after being taken out in separate incidents - the second of which was a clash with Craig Lowndes while running 10th.
Todd Kelly took a best of 14th place, but had his weekend spoiled by a clash with the wall after contact with Jamie Whincup. Rick Kelly finished 14th and 22nd in the first two races of the weekend before an incident with Mark Winterbottom saw him fail to finish the third race as a result of rear suspension damage.
The next event of the V8 Supercars Championship is the first of the 2013 season's endurance races, the Wilson Security Sandown 500 on September 13-15.
James Moffat - #360 Norton Hornets Nissan Altima
“I've worked hard to get to this point in my career and to breakthrough for my first win means a lot,” said James Moffat.
“What a great day for everyone at Nissan Motorsport, Norton and Toshiba. It's all a bit of a dream at the moment. I really tried to come into this event without many expectations. Naturally, if we were going to go well at any circuit, it was this one. It's our test track, and I was very happy with the way we ended our test day, but I wasn't getting carried away, because we know how finicky this track can be. I wasn't prepared to get too far ahead of myself, and even when we were quickest yesterday, I was keeping a lid on it.”
Michael Caruso - #36 Norton Hornets Nissan Altima
“This is brilliant for our whole team. The Norton cars finishing one-two, it's fantastic,” said Michael Caruso.
“We knew we'd come into this event looking better than we have in the previous rounds. We're all wise enough to know that this circuit has no advantage for the cars with big horsepower. The Nissans have been handling really well and we've shown that throughout the year. It's a credit to everyone on the team; our engineering guys are working hard and it's paying off.”
Rick Kelly - #15 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima
“It's a little bit of a dream come true, we'd love for the JD cars to be up there, but for the Norton Nissan to achieve that when we still are a bit slow in a straight line is absolutely incredible,” said Rick Kelly.
“We knew coming into this weekend it was about qualifying and those two guys nailed that part of it and were able to do consistent laps in the race and get the reward for doing that. A huge congratulations to the whole team, the last 18 months has been extremely tough for all of us, the guys with their families and everything with the workload has been tough on everyone, so congratulations to everyone on the team and thanks for the effort, because today it paid off.”
Todd Kelly - #7 Jack Daniel's Nissan Altima
“It doesn't get much better than that, for a team that's only eight months old to have had its first win and a one-two at the same time, it doesn't get much better than that at all,” said Todd Kelly.
“Well done to the boys. We always knew that if we were going to have a chance it would be here. We'll try and get a bit of momentum out of this for the rest of the year.”
|1||360||Nissan||James Moffat||Norton 360 Racing||1:22'06.5120|
|2||36||Nissan||Michael Caruso||Norton 360 Racing||1:22'07.3200|
|3||8||Holden||Jason Bright||Team BOC||1:22'11.9950|
|4||5||Ford||Mark Winterbottom||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||1:22'12.6377|
|5||22||Holden||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team||1:22'12.8960|
|6||6||Ford||Will Davison||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||1:22'17.5376|
|7||14||Holden||Fabian Coulthard||Lockwood Racing||1:22'20.3430|
|8||2||Holden||Garth Tander||Holden Racing Team||1:22'24.5317|
|9||66||Holden||Russell Ingall||Supercheap Auto Racing||1:22'24.8570|
|10||55||Ford||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O FPR Ford||1:22'26.5730|
|14||15||Nissan||Rick Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||1:22'33.3623|
|24||7||Nissan||Todd Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||1:22'41.7330|
|1||5||Ford||Mark Winterbottom||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||50'25.5250|
|2||8||Holden||Jason Bright||Team BOC||50'25.9480|
|3||22||Holden||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team||50'31.7890|
|4||3||Holden||Tony D'Alberto||Team HIFLEX||50'36.7927|
|5||97||Holden||Shane van Gisbergen||TEKNO Team VIP||50'37.2913|
|6||55||Ford||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O FPR Ford||50'37.6716|
|7||6||Ford||Will Davison||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||50'43.3190|
|8||14||Holden||Fabian Coulthard||Lockwood Racing||50'43.7340|
|9||33||Holden||Scott McLaughlin||Fujitsu Racing GRM||50'48.5605|
|10||21||Holden||David Wall||Wilson Security Racing||50'48.8060|
|11||360||Nissan||James Moffat||Norton 360 Racing||50'49.3064|
|14||7||Nissan||Todd Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||51'00.0670|
|22||15||Nissan||Rick Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||51'12.5159|
|36||Nissan||Michael Caruso||Norton 360 Racing||DNF|
|1||22||Holden||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team||55'19.8372|
|2||14||Holden||Fabian Coulthard||Lockwood Racing||55'22.7886|
|3||12||Ford||Chaz Mostert||Wilson Security Racing||55'24.3762|
|4||2||Holden||Garth Tander||Holden Racing Team||55'24.5440|
|5||97||Holden||Shane van Gisbergen||TEKNO Team VIP||55'24.8047|
|6||6||Ford||Will Davison||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||55'25.9028|
|7||55||Ford||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O FPR Ford||55'26.4382|
|8||360||Nissan||James Moffat||Norton 360 Racing||55'26.8818|
|9||17||Ford||Tim Blanchard||Wilson Security Racing||55'28.5425|
|10||888||Holden||Craig Lowndes||Red Bull Racing Australia||55'33.6536|
|36||Nissan||Michael Caruso||Norton 360 Racing||DNF|
|15||Nissan||Rick Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||DNF|
|7||Nissan||Todd Kelly||Jack Daniel's Racing||DNF|