Gold Coast Thrusday Practice

COURIER MAIL GTP CLASSIC - OCTOBER 15 - 18 HONDA INDY PRACTICE 15th SEPTEMBER 1998 PORSCHE PAIR SET THE PACE AT GTP INDY Porsche duo Rodney Forbes and Jim Richards set the pace on the opening day of practice today for The Courier Mail GTP ...

COURIER MAIL GTP CLASSIC - OCTOBER 15 - 18

HONDA INDY PRACTICE 15th SEPTEMBER 1998

PORSCHE PAIR SET THE PACE AT GTP INDY

Porsche duo Rodney Forbes and Jim Richards set the pace on the opening day of practice today for The Courier Mail GTP Classic at the 1998 Honda Indy on the streets of Surfers Paradise.

Fresh from his Porsche Cup victories at Bathurst, Forbes was fastest in both sessions, recording a fastest time of 2:06.671.

Richards improved from the opening session to climb to second fastest in the afternoon aboard his new Porsche 911 RSCS.

"The car is still very new, but overall it seems to be working well," Richards said.

"We are looking at making a few improvements tomorrow to try to bridge the gap to Rodney but I think we will be in pretty good shape for the races."

"I really like the circuit here and I'm really looking forward to doing battle on Saturday and Sunday."

Young US based open wheeler racer Darren Palmer performed strongly to set the second fastest time in the opening session aboard the Ferrari F355 Challenge. Fellow Ferrari driver Perry Spiridis improved throughout the day, finishing 3rd fastest in the second session.

Ross Almond used the four-wheel-drive of his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo V to good effect to be fifth and sixth fastest in his first trip to Indy.

"I really love the circuit here, the car seems really well suited to the tight corners at either end of the track," Almond said.

Local Gold Coaster John Trimbole set the pace in Class B aboard his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III ahead of fellow Lancer racer, Mark King and Courier Mail Chief Executive, John Cowley aboard his HSV GTS-R.

David Ratcliff dominated practice in Class C, setting the fastest time in both sessions with his Toyota Camry CSi.

GTP LIGHTS - GTP SPORTS

Michael Simpson continued his pacesetting ways in the new GTP Sports - Class S aboard his BMW 323i, ahead of team-mate, Beric Lynton aboard a similar machine.

Calvin Gardiner dominated the GTP Lights - Class D division with his Mazda 626 with female racer Carol Jackson in second with her Honda Civic VTi-R.

Aaron McGill was the man to catch in Class E with his Suzuki Swift GTi, but unfortunately crashed heavily in the afternoon session - possibly putting his out for the rest of the weekend.

RESULTS

SESSION ONE 1. Rodney Forbes, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:08.286 2. Darren Palmer, Ferrari F355 Challenge 2:12.702 3. Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:13.409 4. Perry Spiridis, Ferrari F355 Challenge 2:15.237 Class B John Trimbole, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III 2:21.516 Class C David Ratcliff, Toyota Camry CSi 2:27.486 Class D Calvin Gardiner, Mazda 626 2:27.686 Class E Aaron McGill, Suzuki Swift GTi 2:32.125 Class S Michael Simpson, BMW 323i 2:21.422

SESSION TWO 1. Rodney Forbes, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:06.671 2. Jim Richards, Porsche 911 RSCS 2:07.667 4. Perry Spiridis, Ferrari F355 Challenge 2:11.043 2. Darren Palmer, Ferrari F355 Challenge 2:11.747 Class B John Trimbole, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo III 2:22.191 Class C David Ratcliff, Toyota Camry CSi 2:31.091 Class D Calvin Gardiner, Mazda 626 2:27.599 Class E Aaron McGill, Suzuki Swift GTi 2:31.468 Class S Michael Simpson, BMW 323i 2:21.922

Paul Ryan paulryan@camtech.net.au

------------------------ Internet Access Australia------------------------ --- IAA is MNI's ISP of choice at the '98 Gold Coast Indy --- ---- Melbourne -- Tel. 03 9686 6677 -- Fax 03 9686 6644 ----- ------------------ http://www.iaccess.com.au ---------------------

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