Penrite Racing driver, David Reynolds has claimed his first podium with new team, Kelly Grove Racing at the Penrite Oil Sandown SuperSprint and on his 350th race start.
Saturday’s practice sessions allowed the team to trial different set up options and come qualifying, Reynolds made it through to the second qualifying session, putting him P16 ahead of the first race.
Although the 35-year-old got off the line well, his good start was hindered on the first lap after contact with another car, which bent one of his rear wheel rims and made the car difficult to drive. After pitting and changing the damaged rim, Reynolds returned to the track to finish five spots ahead in 11th, just outside the top ten.
“I got hit in the first lap and that bent one of the rear wheels which made it really hard to drive, then when we did the pit stop and bolted on a new set in cleaned up and was better to drive,” said Reynolds.
“With the short races, it was really important to qualify better, because you don’t have the opportunity to make up a lot of positions unless your car is perfect. Had we of done a better job in qualifying, we may have done better in the race. All things considered though, we did quite well to bounce back and finish where we did.”
In typical Melbourne-style, the weather conditions impacted set up options and teams had to opt for the Dunlop wet tyres for the two qualifying sessions. Reynolds managed to qualify 9th and 4th ahead of the two afternoon races.
Unfortunately, in the first race Reynolds got taken out and spun on lap one, which caused significant damage to the rear left-hand suspension. The Penrite Mustang limped back to the pits and the team were able to repair the damage, although a few laps down, finished 22nd.
Thanks to David’s qualifying session, the #26 Penrite Mustang started from the second row of the grid for the final race of the weekend and for his milestone, 350th race start. Reynolds got a great start, passing (Will) Davison into turn one to claim P3. The Penrite racer battled his way past (Jamie) Whincup and moved into second, before dropping back into P3 later on, which is where he would cross the chequered flag.
“It was awesome to get a podium in my 350th race at the Penrite Oil Sandown Super Sprint and do everyone at Penrite proud this weekend and bring home a trophy,” said Reynolds.
“It was shocking conditions, especially at the start, but I got a good start, moved up to P3 and then just kept my head down from there.
”It’s a really solid improvement from where we were last round, we were competitive all weekend and the car was pretty good to drive, particularly on Sunday.
“Sunday’s first race was pretty disappointing because we got turned around and the car was damaged, which is a little annoying because the car would have been just as quick in that race.
”We’re heading in the right direction as a team and I’m really proud of all the guys, it’s been an intense few weeks with a lot of changes to the cars but it is starting to pay off.”
The Repco Supercars next head to the Beaurepaires Tasmania SuperSprint, April 10-11.