Topsy-turvy day for TeamVodafone as Lowndes stops to help a friend in need TeamVodafone drivers Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup have finished today's dramatic practice session at Darwin's Hidden Valley Raceway with mixed results after both ...
Topsy-turvy day for TeamVodafone as Lowndes stops to help a friend in need
TeamVodafone drivers Craig Lowndes and Jamie Whincup have finished today's dramatic practice session at Darwin's Hidden Valley Raceway with mixed results after both drivers were forced to their second set of practice tyres earlier than planned.
While Lowndes finished inside the top ten after recording the ninth quickest time, Whincup was unable to get a good run on his P2 tyres and ended up 17th.
Acknowledging his tyres were too far used to make any further improvements towards the end of the session, Lowndes said he was confident the team had found a good setup for tomorrow's qualifying.
"The first set of tyres today weren't as good as we had hoped and despite making a number of changes we kept coming back to our base setup, which prompted us to go to our second set of practice tyres earlier than planned," Lowndes explained.
"Our P2 tyres gave us the grip level we were looking for and the car balance wasn't too far away. We continued to make more changes to the car and I was quite happy with it towards the end."
Lowndes became the unsung hero of the day after he assisted fellow Ford driver James Courtney out of his Falcon at Turn 10 after it rolled onto its roof only 20 minutes into the two-hour session.
Ironically the TeamVodafone driver had spent Wednesday with a group of local indigenous children as part of the Red Dust Role Models program where he talked about the camaraderie between the V8 Supercar drivers, and his famous Calder Park rollover.
"I have been in the same situation and had my fellow competitors stop and come to my aid," said Lowndes. "Today the role was reversed and I was only to happy to stop and help James (Courtney)."
After struggling during the first part of qualifying with his practice tyres Jamie Whincup said he was much happier with his Falcon's performance on their second set of tyres but admitted he was unable to get a good clean lap in.
"We didn't show our true potential today due to a bad run on our better set of tyres," Whincup said. "We also need to make a few more chassis adjustments if we are to match our rivals."
"We are not too disappointed as we know the car is a lot better than it looks on the timesheets and pay day is tomorrow."
Tomorrows on-track program will see the V8 Supercars qualify at 11.30am (CST) with Race 1 scheduled to start at 3.35pm (CST).