SBR On Move At Phillip Island
Stone Brother’s Racing (SBR) have kicked off their ‘Season of Endurance’ with some promising results, during opening practice for the L&H 500 at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit today.
Shane van Gisbergen and John McIntyre in the #9 SP Tools Racing Falcon were the quickest of the SBR Ford’s, posting the day’s fifth fastest time. It was a great recovery for the duo, who essentially had to sit out the first practice session when electrical gremlins upset the SP Tools Falcon. With the problem sorted, McIntyre was quick out of the box, posting the second fastest time in the ‘co-driver only’ session – a great effort and even better forecast of things to come.
The #47 Lucky 7 Racing Falcon of Tim Slade and Dan Gaunt was also on the pace in today’s sessions, extracting enough speed to finish the day in seventh place. Gaunt, who is also competing in the Porsche Carrera Cup series this weekend is getting plenty of laps at the Phillip Island circuit and is looking comfortable in the #47 machine.
Next door in the #9 IRWIN Racing garage, Alex Davison and David Brabham are also making progress with their car’s development with their finishing position of 23rd not really a true reflection of their prospects this weekend.
The SBR Falcons will be returning to the track tomorrow morning for another two practice sessions and qualifying before the two “Qualifying Races” in the afternoon.
Shane van Gisbergen – Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9
“It was pretty tough missing out on the first session and then in the last session I didn’t get a good run on my new tyres so to finish fifth is reasonable – it probably appears worse than it really is but all things are pointing in the right direction for further development tomorrow.”
John McIntyre – Co-Driver, SP Tools Racing Car #9
“It was quite unusual breaking in the car before Shane had done any proper laps today. Our equipment feels really well-balanced which gives you a lot of confidence which is just what you need around here. The car was good enough for me to be second fastest in my session so I couldn’t be happier. There’s a few small things we’re yet to iron out but there’s still plenty of time left for that tomorrow.”
Tim Slade – Driver, Lucky 7 Racing Car #47
“I’m reasonably with today’s progress. There’s still some work to do but in general things are pretty good and we’ve got a strong platform to build on in tomorrow’s further practice sessions. Dan had plenty of laps today – he’s comfortable in the car which is good.”
Alex Davison – Driver, IRWIN Racing Car #4
“I’m not overly happy with where we’re at – we seem to be struggling with generating the grip we need to climb further up the timesheets. That said, we had two goals today and they were to work through our normal drill of changes to gauge where we’re at and secondly to get David up to speed in the car – we achieved both of these so we can push on tomorrow with some fine tuning which should provide some better times.”
David Brabham – Co-Driver, IRWIN Racing Car #4
“It was good to finally get back into a V8 Supercar. I haven’t driven one since the Gold Coast event last year so today was all about getting reacquainted with the systems and changes to the car from last year and generally getting a feel for it again – it’s so different to the GT1 car I normally drive! I didn’t do a lot of laps but we have some data now I can study with the engineers tonight and find where I can improve and pull some more time again tomorrow.”