BACK from a flying visit to Texas to test the track at Austin where the V8 Supercars will race next year, Ford driver Mark Winterbottom could be the man to beat in Townsville this weekend.
"Frosty" sits third on the championship table, but has the best form of any driver on the north Queensland street circuit, having finished all six races there inside the top eight.
"The track has always been good to me so let's hope it continues," he said.
Winterbottom said he was surprised at the response he received in Texas.
"It was really great to discover just how well known our sport is so far from home," he said. "Chatting to people in shops and restaurants and having them wish you luck for Townsville was pretty cool. It goes to show that Austin is the right place for us to be racing."
Winterbottom said the Townsville circuit was very similar to the Hamilton street track in New Zealand.
"We were very strong there earlier in the year so we know our cars will be competitive," he said.