Sirromet Wines Holden Commodore driver Paul Morris struggled to find competitive car speed in today's practice and qualifying sessions for this weekend's 11th round of the V8 Supercar Championship on the Gold Coast. The Gillette V8 Supercar ...
Sirromet Wines Holden Commodore driver Paul Morris struggled to find competitive car speed in today's practice and qualifying sessions for this weekend's 11th round of the V8 Supercar Championship on the Gold Coast.
The Gillette V8 Supercar Challenge comprises two 100km races -- the first tomorrow, and the second on Sunday before the Lexmark 300 Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) event on the 4.5km Surfers Paradise street circuit.
Morris will start the first V8 Supercar race from 30th position on the grid, after finishing 30th in today's qualifying session with as best lap of 1-min 53.587-secs. The 35-year-old Gold Coast driver set the time on his fifth of 12 laps in the qualifying session, and was 2.692-secs behind the pole position-winning Holden Racing Team Commodore of Mark Skaife.
During qualifying Morris lost track-time after temporarily driving off the track at the end of the back straight on Main Beach Parade. His car was not damaged and he was able to resume driving. Earlier in the day Morris had been 27th quickest in the first practice session with a best lap of 1-min 55.061-secs, and then 17th in the second practice session with 1-min 53.547-secs.
Morris had previously qualified for the Top 10 Shoot Out in four rounds of this year's championship -- at Winton in May, Queensland Raceway in July, Oran Park in August, and Sandown in September.
PAUL MORRIS QUOTES: "We're struggling for car speed big-time. It's mostly a lack of front-end grip. We've had some problems before with low-speed, mid-corner grip, but not as bad as here. Maybe the problem is showing up here because there are more low-speed corners than at some other tracks. Today we tried several different changes with springs and 'shocks', but we're still chasing the problem. Tomorrow we will try something different in the warm-up and hopefully we will be in better shape for the race. It's going to be a tough day tomorrow starting so far back on the grid. There aren't a lot of passing places here, and there's no room for mistakes or you're going to end up hitting a concrete wall somewhere." <pre> RESULTS -- QUALIFYING: POS DRIVERS CAR TIME 1. Mark Skaife Holden Racing Team Commodore 1:50.895 2. Max Wilson Shell Helix Ford Falcon 1:51.312 3. Jason Bright Team Brock Holden Commodore 1:51.391 4. Greg Murphy Kmart Holden Commodore 1:51.474 5. Russell Ingall Caltex Havoline Ford Falcon 1:51.529 6. Jason Richards Team Dynamik Holden Commodore 1:51.592 7. Steven Richards Castrol Perkins Holden Commodore 1:51.698 8. Steve Ellery Super Cheap Auto Ford Falcon 1:51.711 9. Rick Kelly Kmart Holden Commodore 1:51.739 10. Todd Kelly Holden Racing Team Commodore 1:51.930 OTHER: 30. Paul Morris Sirromet Wines Holden Commodore 1:53.587
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS (after round 10): Ambrose 1,699; Murphy 1,609; Ingall 1,511; Skaife 1,501; Lowndes 1,414; Steven Richards 1,404; Bright 1,351; Rick Kelly 1,328; Todd Kelly 1,270; Tander 1,246. Other: Morris 767