Bahrain: IRWIN Racing practice report

IRWIN RACING LOOKING STRONG IN BAHRAIN IRWIN Racing's Alex Davison has set the eighth quickest time during practice for the Gulf Air 400 at Bahrain International Circuit in the Middle East. Davison and the IRWIN Racing team brought their...

IRWIN RACING LOOKING STRONG IN BAHRAIN

IRWIN Racing's Alex Davison has set the eighth quickest time during practice for the Gulf Air 400 at Bahrain International Circuit in the Middle East.

Davison and the IRWIN Racing team brought their strong pace to Bahrain after showing good speed during last weekend's opening round in Abu Dhabi.

Despite both tracks being in the Persian Gulf, their characteristics are totally different. The all-new Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi was very high grip, while the Bahrain International Circuit has low grip. Adding to the challenge this weekend is the fact that the V8s are running the longer 5.41km Grand Prix layout, which includes a succession of sweeping bends.

Davison and the IRWIN Racing team worked on set-up during the opening 40-minute session, clocking the seventh quickest times amongst the cars in the lower 50% in the championship. With the likes of Holden Racing Team in this group, Davison was able to further improve his pace to be third in the second session.

With all cars on the track in practice #3, Davison was able to maintain his pace and be fourth fastest. That session proved to be best for Davison and the IRWIN Racing crew. With high tyre wear, Davison did not put an extra fresh set of tyres on the IRWIN Ford, the team making the wise decision to keep them in the garage for tomorrow's qualifying session.

The IRWIN Racing Ford Falcon returns to the track for qualifying, followed by the Top-10 Shootout. The opening 200km (37-lap) race of the Gulf Air 400 will be run in the afternoon local time.

What IRWIN Racing's Alex Davison had to say:

"It was a pretty good day for the IRWIN Racing team. Importantly when a lot of others put a fresh set of tyres on at the end, we decided to keep ours in the garage for tomorrow. The good news was the third session of the day with everyone on the track when we were fourth fastest. The tyre degradation is so high here that it is very difficult to set the IRWIN Ford up because the car is changing just about every lap. It's very easy to get confused and very difficult to know what to change. I don't think we are too far away and I think the IRWIN Falcon will be competitive in qualifying. It's crazy how quick the rear tyres go off here; no matter how good your car balance is you will have oversteer. So the key is to look after those rear tyres.

What IRWIN Race Engineer David Stuart had to say:

"The IRWIN Racing team was fourth quickest in that first all-in session and in reality you will only get one quick lap on new tyres. We have two fresh sets for qualifying while plenty of others have already used one of those sets. We saw the fastest times in the 2 minute 5s today, the race pace will be around 2 minute 10s. I think we are pretty comfortable with our set-up in the IRWIN Falcon and we should be in the mix. Tyre management will be everything and certainly adds another element to the racing this weekend."

-source: irwin racing

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Alex Davison
Teams Holden Racing Team