COURIER MAIL GTP CLASSIC - OCTOBER 15 - 18
HONDA INDY PRACTICE 16th SEPTEMBER 1998
FORBES & RICHARDS SET THE GTP INDY PACE
Young GTP star Rodney Forbes held off a determined challenge from Bathurst legend Jim Richards to claim pole position for the first of tomorrow's opening races for The Courier Mail GTP Classic on the streets of Surfers Paradise at the 1998 Honda Indy.
Forbes stopped the clocks at 2:06.389 aboard his Porsche 911RSCS - only 8 /100ths of a second faster than Jim Richards in a similar machine.
Sandown winner Dean Canto improved aboard the Maserati Ghibli to be third fastest after suffering gear selection problems yesterday. Darren Palmer finished in fourth position despite tagging the wall after suffering a spin at the first chicane.
Both Forbes and Richards are confident of success in tomorrow's opening event.
"I'm delighted to grab pole position for my first ever race here and I think we are in pretty good shape for tomorrow," Forbes said.
"I was told you may have to use the kerbs to go quick around here but the car is fast without having to bounce my way through the chicanes."
Richards was delighted with the pace of his new Porsche which is making its racetrack debut this weekend.
"The car is a little gem straight out of the box," Richards said.
"I'm really enjoying myself in the Porsche and I can't wait to do battle with Rodney tomorrow."
Ferrari F355 Challenge driver Perry Spiridis failed to complete the qualifying session after breaking a suspension arm on his opening lap.
Local driver Mark King set the pace in Class B aboard his Mitsubishi Lancer RS Evo III Turbo. King headed fellow Mitsubishi driver John Trimbole and Courier Mail Chief Executive John Cowley aboard his HSV GTS-R.
Former Iron Man legend Grant Kenny was fourth fastest aboard his Subaru Impreza WRX after suffering an oil leak.
1998 Class C Championship winner David Ratcliff continued his pacesetting form with the Toyota Camry, setting the fastest time ahead of Chris Sexton (Ford Falcon XR6) and Mark Cohen (Holden (Commodore VS SS).
GTP LIGHTS - GTP SPORTS
Beric Lynton (BMW 323i) reversed the times from yesterday to beat his team-mate Michael Simpson in qualifying in the GTP Sports Class S category.
Calvin Gardiner again set the pace in the GTP Lights Class D division in his Mazda 626.
Carol Jackson was second fastest aboard her Honda Civic VTi-R but suffered a scrape with the wall early in the session after losing her clutch. Aaron McGill just failed to repair his Suzuki Swift in time to make qualifying, leaving Nigel Williams to take pole for Class E.
RESULTS QUALIFYING 1. Rodney Forbes, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:06.389 2. Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:06.471 3. Dean Canto, Maserati Ghibli 2:09.026 4. Darren Palmer, Ferrari F355 Challenge 2:10.229 Class B Mark King, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III 2:18.754 Class C David Ratcliff, Toyota Camry CSi 2:25.292 Class D Calvin Gardiner, Mazda 626 2:26.010 Class E Nigel Williams, Suzuki Swift GTi 2:35.036 Class S Beric Lynton, BMW 323i 2:19.430
Paul Ryan, PR Squared, (0419) 295 285 firstname.lastname@example.org
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