Mark Winterbottom keeps cool for big Townsville win

COULD this finally be the year for Ford driver Mark Winterbottom?

The Pepsi Max Crew team member produced a dominant weekend at the Townsville 400, winning both races and shooting out to a 248-point lead over Craig Lowndes on the V8 Supercars Championship table.

Yesterday's race win was a methodical performance from the 34-year-old veteran after starting in fifth place, before overtaking David Reynolds for the lead on the 52nd lap, and winning comfortably by 2.92 seconds.

Holden's James Courtney then overtook Reynolds for second. Winterbottom pipped Reynolds by 0.271 seconds in the first race of the weekend on Saturday, with Fabian Coulthard coming third.

Winterbottom has not won a V8 Championship in 12 attempts - his best finish is third overall - and there are eight rounds to go.