Abu Dhabi: SBR practice report

VAN GISBERGEN SETS THE BENCHMARK AT YAS MARINA CIRCUIT SP Tools Racing's Shane van Gisbergen continued his testing efforts today setting the practice record when the V8 Supercars hit the track for the first time at the spectacular Yas Marina ...

VAN GISBERGEN SETS THE BENCHMARK AT YAS MARINA CIRCUIT

SP Tools Racing's Shane van Gisbergen continued his testing efforts today setting the practice record when the V8 Supercars hit the track for the first time at the spectacular Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi. The session that finished under lights saw van Gisbergen knocked off the top of the time sheets by Whincup in the final seconds, only to have his quickest time of 1:58.2230 reinstated as the fastest lap of the day after Whincup was penalised for cutting a corner.

IRWIN Racing's Alex Davison also had a strong start to the race weekend after completing all four 40 minute sessions, ending the day 4th fastest.

Things weren't quite as good on the other side of the garage with Wilson Security Racing's Tim Slade suffering an engine failure on his debut with the team. The #47 FG Falcon caused a red flag when the car lost engine power and came to a stop with 22 minutes to go in the final practice session.

Shane van Gisbergen - Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9

"This track has a bit of everything, the first part of the circuit is quite open and has the corkscrew in there which really suited our car because we were the quickest in the first sector.

"At the end of the final session it cooled down so quickly when the sun went down, for one run there I had the sun in my eyes and then the next lap we were under lights.

"It's awesome to have my name on the top of the timesheets on our first day in Abu Dhabi, the SP Tools Racing Falcon feels strong and I can't wait for tomorrow's race!"

Alex Davison - Driver, IRWIN Tools Racing Car #4

"That was our best practice day we have had, we were up there in the first couple of sessions but you never really know if that is going to compare with the other guys at the end of the day.

"At the start of the main session we were quick and hung in there the whole time, our tyres had done a lot more laps than most of the guys out there because we took part in the first two extra sessions.

"We did our quickest time we did all day on very used tyres so that was pretty encouraging. Then when we put on the green set I made a little mistake and didn't get the best out of them, the three-tenths that we were off the pace I lost in one corner with a small mistake but it's a fantastic result for the team to have two cars in the top 5.

"The track is state of the art so it's a shame that Australian Officials feel they need to place tyre bundles everywhere, the flow of the circuit is interrupted by the bundles and it really makes the cars look slower and less spectacular around such an amazing facility."

Tim Slade - Driver, Wilson Security Racing Car #47

"The track is pretty awesome, it's fairly low grip.

"We moved forward every session which was great even though we took part in the first two extra sessions and the tyres were pretty average.

"I did three laps in the final session and the engine let go which is disappointing for everyone because we didn't get to run on new tyres. The only positive out of that is we now have an extra set of green tyres for tomorrow's race.

"It's always good to see your teammates up there, it proves the cars are fast so tomorrow's race is going to be very interesting!"

The V8 Supercars hit the track tomorrow at 2:10pm for a 20 minute qualifying session before tomorrow night's 200km race under lights.

-source: sbr

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Alex Davison , Tim Slade , Shane van Gisbergen