Dexion's Tim Slade Drives Into The Top Ten On His V8 Supercar Debut At The Clipsal 500 AS A V8 Supercar rookie with a massive learning curve ahead of him, Dexion Racing's Tim Slade probably has every reason to not expect a high result in this ...
Dexion's Tim Slade Drives Into The Top Ten On His V8 Supercar Debut At The Clipsal 500
AS A V8 Supercar rookie with a massive learning curve ahead of him, Dexion Racing's Tim Slade probably has every reason to not expect a high result in this weekends opening round of the 2007 Fujitsu V8 Supercar series.
However that expectation may yet be changed before the racing this weekend, following an impressive debut performance in today's pair of practice sessions in preparation for the two races that make up the Fujitsu series' opening round on the demanding 3.2km Adelaide street circuit.
This weekends Clipsal 500 Adelaide is Slade's debut in the Fujitsu V8 Supercar development series after finishing second in last years Australian Formula Ford Championship - driving a Dexion supported Van Diemen.
Slade, 21, placed an impressive 10th fastest in the opening session this morning, logging a best lap of 1m27.6982 in what was his first competitive outing in the Dexion Racing BA Falcon - A pre-season ride day earlier this year his only opportunity to acclimatize to driving the V8.
The second session was even more impressive, Slade banking a 1m25.8776s lap just after the chequered flag had flown to leap into 8th place, less than 1.4 seconds from the fastest driver.
Andrew Thompson topped the field by over half a second in the second session, leaving Slade less than a second away from the front row of the competitive 30-car field.
"I'm really happy with the day," said Slade after the second practice session.
"I really went out there and cruised around in the first practice session to get some laps on the track and in the car. At the end I pressed on a bit and banked a half reasonable time given we were on really old rubber.
"The car felt really good on the old Tyres, so it was looking good for when we put new rubber on it." He said.
With gaining experience behind the wheel of a V8 Supercar a key factor to this weekend for the former-McLaren Vale resident, Slade said that he pushed a little too hard, too early in the second session this afternoon.
"I was trying a bit too hard at the start of the second session," he said.
"I calmed down after that and set about putting in a time. We were on new rubber and even though I stuffed the end of my fastest lap up I was really happy with the time.
"There is definitely more to come from the car and especially from me," Slade added.
"I spoke to (Former driver, and team owner) Tony Evangelou and he said that it would be a very good race car -- very easy on its Tyres, which is what we are after.
"There is more time for me to find on green Tyres in qualifying but I think that the car is very strong overall.
"There is more time to come, I'm really looking forward to tomorrow," he said.
Friday will be a busy day for the Dexion racing team, with qualifying followed by the first race of the 2007 Fujitsu V8 Supercar season -- held as a twilight affair -- tomorrow night.