NOTHING IN IT BETWEEN CARATTI, WINSLOW AND TANDER IN SYMMONS PLAINS PRACTICE LESS THAN TWO-TENTHS of a second split the first three cars in practice for the final round of the 2008 Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship at Symmons Plains...
NOTHING IN IT BETWEEN CARATTI, WINSLOW AND TANDER IN SYMMONS PLAINS PRACTICE
LESS THAN TWO-TENTHS of a second split the first three cars in practice for the final round of the 2008 Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship at Symmons Plains raceway, today.
In practice one championship leader James Winslow (50.9141s) led his teammate Nathan Caratti (+0.1085s) and championship rival Leanne Tander (+0.1394s) whilst in qualifying two the top two positions were swapped around.
In the second 30-minute session Caratti set the quickest time of the day at 50.8229s, just 0.0635s faster than Winslow. Leanne Tander was third, still just two-tenths from the top spot.
"We worked on a lot of things today," James Winslow said.
"It was a good day because my engineer and I learnt a lot about the car and how it reacts to setup changes. It's been a good day."
Cold and blustery - but importantly, dry - conditions greeted competitors at Symmons Plains today as two classes come down to the wire after one of the most competitive seasons on record.
The three fighting for the title locked out the top spots in each session, whilst Astuti Motorsport driver Mat Sofi was fourth fastest each time.
In the F3 National Class 2007 Australian Drivers Champion Tim Macrow was comfortably quickest, at least by Symmons Plains standards, in practice one banking a time that was less than a second away from the fastest overall time of the day.
"Not bad for the old girl," Macrow grinned. "We were on really old rubber so with new Tyres we should be able to find about half to six-tenths (of a second) in qualifying tomorrow. Having said that, a 50.7 is one of the better times I've done around here in that car."
Famous for producing tight timesheets, the 2.41km Symmons Plains layout didn't disappoint today with the top ten covered by less than 1.8 seconds in practice two - with the gap expected to shrink tomorrow should the circuit stay dry.
The perceived advantage held by the new-for-2008 2007-spec F3 chassis has not been so apparent in Tasmania and given last year's pole time of 50.6s was set in an F304 car - every chance remains for the National Class runners to nip at the heels of the outright cars.
Tomorrow will witness two, 20-minute qualifying sessions that set the grid for Sunday's races.
Qualifying one - for the 22lap opener on Sunday - will be held at 10:55am whilst qualifying two will be held at 13:10pm.
The second session will set the grid for Sunday afternoons season-ending Country Club Tasmania Formula 3 SuperPrix.