David Reynolds has almost found himself on the podium in Supercars’ triumphant return to racing at Sydney Motorsport Park.
The re-launch of the series forced changes to the on-track format and a result the racing fell over two days instead of the usual three the sport has been accustomed to. Saturday was the first day of action in over twelve weeks, but it wouldn’t take long before the 2017 Bathurst champion found his groove.
After qualifying in P18, Reynolds launched off the line in race 1 climbing to 13th by the end of the opening lap. He then pitted on lap 11 opting for the long run to the end. With tyre degradation worse than anticipated, the 34-year old found out the hard way that tyre life was minimal – flat spotting his left-front and forcing him to pit on lap 17.
Emerging from the pits in P21, the chequered flag was waved at lap 32 which is where Reynolds would finish.
“It was very hectic having the back-to-back sessions and not a lot of time in-between,” said Reynolds.
“I had too much understeer in my car on Saturday and we explored a range of changes to try dial it out. I had a couple good runs but otherwise I think we changed too much for the race and my car wasn’t as quick as it could have been. I managed to get a really good start and probably would have been inside the top ten, though I flat spotted at Turn 2 and our race was basically over then.”
Come Sunday, Reynolds had put himself in a better starting position for both races, qualifying 10th and 9th respectively. The #9 Commodore got a great start in the first race, picking up three spots in the first corner putting him into P7. At the end of lap 12, David made his way to the pits for four tyres and re-joined in P4. He continued to battle it out with Cam Waters but ultimately was unable to make the pass early enough and finished in P5.
It was a short turnaround between races and Reynolds managed to get another blazing start and picked off two spots, putting him in 7th by the end of the opening lap. The Penrite racer went in for his compulsory pitstop, this time changing only two tyres and re-joined behind Jamie Whincup for effective third.
With 9 laps remaining, Reynolds and Lee Holdsworth were battling for a podium position however with Holdsworth having the fresher tyres, David was unable to hold him off and crossed the line in 4th, falling just short of a spot on the podium.
“Sunday was a much better day for us, we changed the car a bit and went a bit faster in qualifying and that led us down the path to do more of the same in the races. The first race was much better, I had a good start and a good race. What really helped me this weekend was good starts, and good first laps so that put me in a better spot to race forward,” said Reynolds.
“I believe we almost had a podium in the first race; I lost a little bit of time on my 4-tyre stop and I think if that went my way we could have been in a better position when I re-joined. I came out with better tyres behind Waters but by the time I caught him I had used them up a bit, so I think if I could have got the pass done earlier and not got stuck behind him then we would have been on the podium.”
The Supercars next stop is the Winton SuperSprint, 18-19 July.
“I’m really looking forward to getting to Winton, we scored a podium there last year and had a strong car so I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do this time around,” said the 34-year old.
Saturday 27th June
Qualifying – 18th
Race 7 – 21st
Sunday 28th June
Qualifying – 10th
Race 8 – 5th
Qualifying – 9th
Race 9 – 4th