James Courtney has broken Ford's win-less streak in the 2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series after dominating today's Ipswich 300 at Queensland Raceway.
The Jim Beam Racing ace qualified second behind Toll Holden Racing Team driver Garth Tander, who lead from the start of the 38-lap event. Courtney then pushed hard on the soft-compound Dunlop SP Sport Maxx Sprint, a tactic which would prove fruitful. Courtney then gained the lead on lap 4 and ultimately ran away with victory; his and Ford's first of the 2010 V8 Supercar Championship Series.
Courtney's only hurdle for the race was stalling exiting his pit bay on lap 17, however the mishap wouldn't stop him, claiming a 13-second victory over Craig Lowndes and Shane van Gisbergen – all of which use the Queensland circuit as their test track.
“The car was amazing; it didn't deteriorate too much the whole time, it was quite surprising how well it did hold up. I was able to get quite a good margin and then just cruise around nicely to the end,” said Courtney.
“I had a lot of speed at the start and I thought I'd stay behind Garth to see what his speed was like, and he was going a bit slower than I thought we had to. So I got passes him and set my own rhythm.”
Courtney's victory wasn't his first for the year after winning Race 1 of the non-Championship BRC IMPCO V8 Supercars GP Challenge at the Australian Grand Prix. Today's victory was the 75th for his Jim Beam Racing outfit, occurring the week of team boss and racing great Dick Johnson's 65th birthday.
“We've always gone really well here in the past, we won here two years ago when I was with SBR, so it's a place I like to come to and it's good to have a victory with Ford.
“Jim Beam Racing is one of the top teams and can take out the Championship. I think it's definitively feasible, we had really good speed today and we did take points out of Jamie's lead. If we take a few more out tomorrow and hopefully reduce the gap throughout the year we're in with a really good shot at the end.”
TeamVodafone's Craig Lowndes finished second, only the second time this season he has beaten his Championship-leading team-mate Jamie Whincup.