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V8 Supercars: Erebus And Mercedes-Benz Break Through At Winton Photo:
 
 
Trevor Collett | Apr, 06 2014 | 4 Comments

Erebus Motorsport driver Lee Holdsworth has delivered a historic first win for Mercedes-Benz fans in the modern era of Australian Touring Car racing.

Holdsworth won Race Eight of the 2014 V8 Supercar Championship Series, which was the second of three races forming this weekend’s round at Winton, Victoria.

Ford Performance Racing’s Mark Winterbottom was second in Race Eight, while Race Seven winner Fabian Coulthard was third.

"It has been a highly emotional 12 months," Holdsworth said.

"It's been so tough, we've had ups but mostly downs. We came into this year with a much better car and it's actually caught me by surprise that we have made that massive step over the break. I just didn't guess we would be winning a race at this time of the year."

The number 4 Erebus Mercedes-Benz E 63 AMG is currently lacking a major sponsor, and Holdsworth said “[winning] is the best way to find one”.

The Mercedes driver could be forgiven for being somewhat distracted this week, as Holdsworth was hesitant to leave his family after chasing a home-invader from their home just days before the Winton meeting.

For charismatic team owner, Betty Klimenko, the victory has justified the decision to move the Erebus team’s engine program in-house for 2014, and brought truth to her statements from the end of last season.

Klimenko declared 2013 to be a learning season, and said at the end of last year that the training-wheels would have to come off for 2014.

“To every single fan and person who stood in the rain with me, for this guy (Holdsworth) who believed in himself all of last year and all the people that believed in him, thank you so much,” Ms Klimenko said.

Earlier in the day, Coultard won Race Seven with Shane van Gisbergen, Dale Wood and Craig Lowndes filling the top-four positions; all driving Holden Commodores.

The Winton round concludes today with qualifying for Race Nine, followed by a scheduled race distance of 67 laps.

 
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