September 12, 2003- Melbourne's Sandown Raceway roared to life today for the opening practice sessions for this weekend's Betta Electrical 500, the first of two major V8 Supercar endurance races of the 2003 season and the ninth round of the ...
September 12, 2003- Melbourne's Sandown Raceway roared to life today for the opening practice sessions for this weekend's Betta Electrical 500, the first of two major V8 Supercar endurance races of the 2003 season and the ninth round of the Australian V8 Supercar Championship Series.
The two 45 minute sessions were held in sunny and cool conditions with FPR's department of youth mainly behind the wheel after regular team drivers David Besnard ,Craig Lowndes and Glenn Seton completed some installation laps. FPR co-drivers Owen Kelly, Adam Macrow and Darren Hossack gained extra mileage in their respective BA Falcon V8 Supercars on this fast three kilometre circuit.
The second 45 minute practice session saw a significant improvement made by CAT FPR Falcon drivers Glenn Seton and Craig Lowndes, with Lowndes setting the 11th fastest lap time. The triple champion's time of 1:11.8811s was 3/10ths of a second behind the fastest lap of the session set by HRT driver Mark Skaife, with Ford driver John Bowe edging ahead of Holden driver Paul Morris in the top three.
The best lap times from the six FPR drivers today at Sandown follow:
Craig Lowndes - 1:11.8811s
Glenn Seton - 1:12.7248s
David Besnard -1:12.8768s
Adam Macrow - 1:13.0049s
Owen Kelly - 1:13.3485s
Darren Hossack - 1:13.6548s
The team reported a solid run from all three cars in today's opening sessions, the day seen as an opportunity for the team's newest drivers to come to grips with their cars and discuss optimum set-ups with their co-drivers and engineers as early as possible.
#6 Craig Lowndes - "We improved the car a great deal from this morning where we had a couple of problems with the clutch and engine, we need to look more closely at our tyre wear and understeer, but our initial set up was a good start."
#6 Glenn Seton - "The car is good on the high speed sections of the circuit, but we have some work to do with our traction out of the slower corners. With a better balance for tomorrow we should be faster."
#19 David Besnard / Owen Kelly - "The car was a lot better in the second practice session, but still not where we need to be. Considering that we went out on some pretty worn rubber, we aren't too far off the pace and with some changes we can improve again tomorrow.
#5 Adam Macrow / Darren Hossack - "We made a change and it didn't improve our mid corner understeer problem, but we gained a lot more data during the session and we both improved our lap times, so we are positive heading into one more practice session tomorrow."
FPR returns to the track tomorrow at 9:45am for the third and final practice session before heading into Qualifying (12:40pm) and the Top Ten Shootout (3:00pm). All results will appear in the results section of this website as soon as they are available.