Skaife and Tander rocket to fastest time in opening Bathurst practice Holden Racing Team duo Mark Skaife and Garth Tander have stamped their authority on this year's Supercheap Auto 1000 at Bathurst by setting the fastest time in today's opening...
Skaife and Tander rocket to fastest time in opening Bathurst practice
Holden Racing Team duo Mark Skaife and Garth Tander have stamped their authority on this year's Supercheap Auto 1000 at Bathurst by setting the fastest time in today's opening practice session for this weekend's race at Mount Panorama.
Skaife set the 2m08.1727s lap, which was a full eighttenths of a second quicker than the FPR Falcon of Sandown 500 winners Jason Bright and Mark Winterbottom.
Just to underline the early pace of the HRT #2 Commodore, Tander set the second fastest lap of any driver in the session, clocking a 2m08.9594s during his time behind the wheel.
Tander also spent some time in the sister #22 Commodore to shake it down before handing over to Bathurst rookie Ryan Briscoe and veteran Jim Richards.
Briscoe took his first laps in anger around Mount Panorama today and immediately impressed the team with his levelheaded approach to learning the toughest track in Australian motorsport.
He is fresh from arriving back in Australia on Wednesday following his third place last weekend in the A1 Grand Prix event in Holland.
Briscoe and Richards were 21st fastest today with more practice to come tomorrow as well as qualifying.
Mark Skaife (#2 Holden Racing Team Commodore VZ)
"The car was really good from the time we rolled it out. I did the early part of the session and the balance was pretty good. We made a few small changes as the session went on but we were very happy with it. It's certainly not perfect but the car is flowing well. In terms of the gap over the second fastest car, it's such a long lap that it really isn't that much of a gap. It's only Thursday so we're not getting carried away the others are only going to get faster."
Garth Tander (#2 Holden Racing Team Commodore VZ)
"I actually had a brief run off across the top of the Mountain at Skyline during the day. It wasn't that big of a deal I just fired it off after it got very taily and that's the worst place on the track to have a taily car! I got back to the pits and one of the data guys said he'd seen it on the steering traces so I couldn't fib about it! The car feels really great fantastic nothing really is wrong with the setup. We just need to fine tune it in a few small areas." Jim Richards (#22 Holden Racing Team Commodore VZ) "I'm quite happy with the car for the first day. It's as good as the #2 car for sure but we just spent the day driving around familiarising ourselves with the car. We'll put some new tyres on it tomorrow to get an idea of how much grip we'll have for qualifying and what sort of pace we have. We're happy at this stage of the weekend."
Ryan Briscoe (#22 Holden Racing Team Commodore VZ)
"It's my first day at Bathurst and I'd have to say that everything went to plan. We did the scheduled number of laps and for me the day was really just to get my head around the circuit. Learning the car is now a small thing in comparisons with learning the track. But I'm feeling good and just looking forward to the rest of the weekend."