F3

AUSF3: Round two Adelaide Thursday report

McFADYEN SEVEN-TENTHS UP AFTER OPENING PRACTICE IN ADELAIDE Neil McFadyen was impressive today and dominated opening practice at the Clipsal 500 Adelaide. "This is the most fun you can have sitting down -- it's awesome!" Neil McFadyen has ...

McFADYEN SEVEN-TENTHS UP AFTER OPENING PRACTICE IN ADELAIDE

Neil McFadyen was impressive today and dominated opening practice at the Clipsal 500 Adelaide.

"This is the most fun you can have sitting down -- it's awesome!"

Neil McFadyen has every reason to be pleased to be back on the streets of Adelaide -- and after today he's got even more after dominating opening practice for this weekend's second round of the Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship at the Clipsal 500 Adelaide.

McFadyen took his Piccola Scuderia Corse Dallara F307 -- Mercedes Benz to the top time in this afternoons second session, his 1m19.5426s lap some seven-tenths quicker than second place Ben Clucas.

The Sydneysider was second fastest in the opening session to cap off a strong day for the 2004 Gold Star Champion, in front of over 44,000 people present at the track today.

McFadyen finished fifth in the opening round of the championship at Eastern Creek, but set fastest lap in the race to show his speed credentials ahead of this weekends' second round.

"We didn't get a chance to test before this round so we're doing it today -- and obviously it's going well," he enthused.

"I'm really pleased with the way it's gone. The team has put an excellent setup in the car and it's performing really well. It's awesome to drive and I think today's performances are an indication of where we are going to be this weekend. We're going to take it as it comes and getting ourselves into a groove for qualifying tomorrow."

British driver Ben Clucas was second this afternoon, rebounding from a gearbox failure that left him stranded on the circuit after minimal laps in practice one.

His Opes Prime Team BRM team-mates (James Winslow, Nathan Caratti and Earl Bamber) were next in the order -- Caratti topping practice one -- whilst Leanne Tander was also well in the mix in her TanderSport #42 car. In something of a surprise, Sydneysider Mat Sofi was third quickest in practice one showing the continuing potential from both the laconic driver and his Transwest Racing team.

"I really like the track, it's awesome to drive on and really challenging," he enthused.

"I arrived really late and didn't get much of a chance to walk the track or test like the others -- so I just went out, learnt my way around and it looks like I got it right.

Sofi was seventh quickest in the second session to cap off a solid day.

Today's best lap was just tenths from the outright track record, teams and drivers predicting times to tumble tomorrow when new rubber is bolted onto the cars for qualifying.

First qualifying will be held from 09:05am tomorrow morning.

Practice Results (Combined Times)


1. Neil McFadyen (Piccola Scuderia Corse) 1m19.5426
2. Ben Clucas (Opes Prime Team BRM) 1m20.2983
3. James Winslow (Opes Prime Team BRM) 1m20.3716
4. Nathan Caratti (Opes Prime Team BRM) 1m20.5683
5. Earl Bamber (Opes Prime Team BRM) 1m20.8500

National Class: Chris Gilmour (Gilmour Racing) 1m21.7655 Trophy Class: Andrew Mill (Property Solutions Group) 1:25.7929

-credit: formula3.com.au

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Series F3
Drivers Ben Clucas , Neil McFadyen , James Winslow , Leanne Tander , Earl Bamber , Nathan Caratti , Chris Gilmour , Andrew Mill