Josh Burdon has taken a stunning race win and the round honours at Tours Speedway (France) for the fourth round of the NASCAR Whelan Euro Series this weekend, 6-7th July 2013.With two front row starts and finishing runner-up on Saturday, Burdon’s Sunday victory has seen the 20 year-old from Hobart (Australia) extend his lead in the Open Class to 31 points.
“I enjoyed the racing, and my first time on the oval I thought it was a big success,” said Burdon, “100 laps is a long way around here in this heat, and I loved the crowd’s support, this French crowd rocked… We managed to win the round and extend the Championship lead, so I’m definitely one happy boy tonight.”
Burdon’s Forza Motorsport / Xbox Chevrolet SS showed great pace out of the box in Practice, and despite a small error during qualifying for Saturday’s race, he found himself starting on the front row, but on the undesired side of the track.
“I started on the outside in P2, and when you’re on the outside you just get swallowed up, where the inside is just like a train and you’ve just got to push across as quickly as you can.”
With several safety car periods, Burdon frequently found his advantages gained in racing lost by restarting on the outside, but on lap 45 he was able to push his way to the lead, where he stayed until the final lap, where he was unloaded but managed to hold on for second place.
“I’m kind of lucky to have finished; I copped a couple of fairly big hits from behind at turn one off the restart, I think three times, so I was nearly out three times there,” said Burdon, “I would have liked to win this first race on the oval, but Julien [Goupy] was quite aggressive behind me and I guess really, really, wanted to win. The Championship definitely came into my mind and I eased off a little and thought that second was much better than ending up in the wall with more work and no points.”
“It was looking really good for pole until the very end,” said Burdon, “pole would have been great, but mainly because it would have had me on the inside line for the race start”.
In Sunday’s race, Burdon was involved in an opening lap incident, which saw most of the shell ripped off the driver’s side and cost him a number of places at the time, but he managed to find his way to the front with 28 remaining, and held on for his fifth race win of the season.
“What a race today,” said Burdon, “I started P2, got taken out the first corner and put back to seventh, then fought my way through in one of the most, if not the most aggressive races I’ve been in, and took the win”.
The Championship proper will next head to Monza in Italy on 28th September 2013 for the first of two finals, where the points awarded are doubled.
“We have a bit of a break to get the car straight and fully checked over to have it in the best possible condition for the finals, and we may have a handy lead at this point, but that can disappear quickly with double points on offer.”
EURO RACECAR NASCAR TOURING SERIES
OPEN CLASS CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS:
P. DRIVER Country MAKE POINTS
1 Josh Burdon Australia Chevrolet SS 357
2 Anthony Gandon France Chevrolet Camaro 326
3 Julien Goupy France Ford Mustang 317
4 Gabriele Volpato Italy Chevrolet Camaro 289
5 Guillaume Rousseau France Ford Mustang 280
Images courtesy of Patrice Bompas