Super Cheap Auto Racing's Steve Ellery was making his way back through the field after a pit stop when he unexpectedly went aquaplaning off the track after coming into contact with an on-track oil slick left by Steven Johnson's Falcon.

Johnson's BA blew an engine leaving oil at the end of the straight.

"I hit the oil and slid off the track, it was that simple," said Ellery. "I went into the sand pretty quick and I was concerned that I might hit someone, fortunately that didn't happen cause it could have caused a lot of damage.

"I got bogged which was frustrating, but the worst thing was that I was starting to get back into the race."

With in-car communications down following the off, Ellery was able to drive back into the pits where he told his team that he wanted to continue.

"I came to Eastern Creek to race and I thought that it was important to finish, it's important for the team, the sponsors and the fans." Ellery continued.

"If I'd been unable to complete the race because of car damage sustained in the off then that's out of my hands, but the Ford seemed to be alright.

"There was obviously a lot of sand filling up the radiator but it emptied pretty quickly, and showed no side-effects, so I resumed.

"It's always good to finish the season in the car as opposed to watching it from the pits."

Ellery finished the race in 23rd place.

Ellery is going into the off-season already planning for 2004.

"The 2004 season starts tomorrow," Ellery said. "We have set the foundations this year for a strong season next year.

"Bathurst and Sandown were tremendous and we were so close in several other races, the future for Super Cheap Auto Racing is looking good.

"We'll have the same committed team and we'll make further technical improvements that will see us reach the potential that we have hinted at so frequently over the season.

"I'm going to enjoy some hard earned time off and then it's straight into it. There's no reason why next year can't be our most exciting ever."

Ellery was full of praise for Marcos Ambrose, who won the V8 title today, and for Ford.

"Marcos has performed fantastically this year, he has worked so hard for this amazing achievement and I am extremely happy for him and his team," Ellery said.

"It's also terrific to see the blue oval at the top again, it's been a long time coming.

"I'm very proud to be able to say that I drive for Ford. We are a close family and everyone will enjoy this time."

 

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