The 2013 Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour has developed into a three-way fight between the Clearwater Ferrari, Erebus Mercedes and Phoenix Audi squads at its halfway mark.
The Craig Baird-driven Clearwater Ferrari held the lead at the end of Hour 6 as the race restarted from its eighth Safety Car period.
The Thomas Jaeger Erebus Mercedes, Johan Kristoffersson Phoenix Audi and Peter Hackett Erebus Mercedes filled second through fourth – the only cars remaining on the lead lap.
Clearwater’s lead exists despite the car having to complete a drive-through penalty early in the fifth hour after being judged to have overlapped on a Safety Car restart.
Lee Holdsworth also befell the same fate in the #63 Erebus Mercedes, temporarily putting the #63 Mercedes off-sequence on fuel strategy with its key rivals.
Baird was the star of the midday running, scything from fifth place to the lead after taking over from Irish co-driver Matt Griffin.
Bernd Schneider had earlier made his mark on the race during his first stint, occasionally dropping into the 2:07s bracket as he led much of the fourth hour.
The second quarter of the race was a disastrous one for two of the three Ferraris, with the Maranello and AF Corse 458s both going to the garage with mechanical problems in Hour 4.
The Italian entry fell seven laps off the pace with its dramas, while the Maranello car eventually retired after a high-speed incident for John Bowe at McPhillamy Park.
Things were little better in the Melbourne Performance Centre Audi garage. The car dropped off the lead lap due to the large period of green flag running occurring when car owner Rod Salmon was at the wheel.
A drive-through for pitlane speeding cost further time before the Audi eventually went to the garage following a brush with the wall.
The #48 GB Galvanizing Lamorghini also spent time in the garage during Hour 6 as the M Motorsport crew dealt with a gearbox issue.
CLICK HERE for Speedcafe.com’s previous update from the end of Hour 3
See below for the running order at halfway
|1||33||Clearwater Racing||Ferrari F458 GT3||A||135||05:59:29.9216|
|2||36||Erebus Motorsport||Mercedes SLS AMG GT3||A||135||05:59:34.7129|
|3||1||Phoenix Racing||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||135||05:59:42.1997|
|4||63||Erebus Motorsport||Mercedes SLS AMG GT3||A||135||05:59:43.0775|
|5||5||VIP Petfoods||Porsche 911 GT3 R||A||134||05:59:46.6728|
|6||9||Network Clothing / Hallmarc||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||132||05:59:39.2236|
|7||12||ASM/BRM Motorsports/Blundstone||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||131||05:59:32.8464|
|8||14||Peter Conroy Motorsport||Audi R8 LMS GT||A||131||05:59:35.4665|
|9||23||United Autosports||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||131||05:59:41.1749|
|10||6||Skwirk / Oneworld Bar||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||130||05:59:47.1820|
|11||30||Hunter Sports Group||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||130||05:59:49.3740|
|12||71||Equity-One Mortgage Fund||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||128||05:59:37.9692|
|13||4||Grove Group||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||128||05:59:44.1223|
|14||58||AF Corse SRL||Ferrari F458 GT3||A||128||05:59:55.5484|
|15||81||DragonSpeed||Audi R8 LMS Ultra GT||A||127||05:59:31.5747|
|16||44||Mal Rose Racing||Holden VY Commodore||I3||127||05:59:44.8770|
|17||69||Motorsport Services||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||123||05:59:48.4950|
|18||48||GB Galvanizing||Lamborghini GT3 LP56||A||122||05:59:59.7608|
|19||60||1Cover Motionsport||Lotus Elise||I1||122||06:00:12.3653|
|20||8||We Are Legend||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||120||05:59:51.1450|
|21||2||Racer Industries||Holden Astra HSV VXR||I2||120||05:59:56.6323|
|22||20||Team Peugeot RCZ||Peugeot RCZ Cup||I1||120||05:59:57.8408|
|23||21||Team Peugeot RCZ||Peugeot RCZ Cup||I1||120||06:00:01.6298|
|24||13||Bruce Lynton BMW||BMW E46||I3||118||05:59:44.0501|
|25||55||Motorsport Services||Seat Leon Supercopa||I2||118||05:59:58.8076|
|26||62||nurburgring.com.au||Lotus Exige S||C||117||05:59:50.3682|
|27||7||Maximum Motorsport||Subaru Impreza WRX S||D||117||05:59:52.4095|
|28||3||Racer Industries||Holden Astra HSV VXR||E||115||06:00:06.1106|
|29||26||GWS Personnel||BMW 130i||E||115||06:00:08.5461|
|30||22||Cootes Transport||Ford FPV GT||D||112||06:00:00.8334|
|31||17||Showershop (NZ)||Subaru Impreza WRX S||I2||112||06:00:03.8953|
|32||88||Il Bello Rosso||Ferrari F458 GT3||A||111||05:33:33.2263|
|33||29||Trofeo Motorsport / Pirelli||Chevrolet Corvette Z||A||110||06:00:23.4048|
|34||54||Donut King||Nissan R35 GTR||C||101||05:59:54.3713|
|35||10||Simply Sports Cars||Lotus Exige||C||99||05:59:53.2904|
|36||70||Motorsport Services||Seat Leon Supercopa||I2||97||05:18:46.1162|
|37||24||GWS Personnel||BMW 335i||D||97||05:54:00.3117|
|38||35||Sennheiser/ Ric Shaw Racing||Mazda RX-7||I2||94||06:00:09.8250|
|39||27||The Shire Conveyancer||BMW 130i||E||93||06:00:04.5956|
|40||67||Motorsport Services||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||91||06:02:38.5253|
|41||45||Rentcorp Forklifts||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||90||05:59:37.0666|
|42||65||Daytona Sports Cars Pty Ltd||Daytona Coupe||I3||85||05:59:43.2012|
|43||68||Motorsport Services||Porsche 997 GT3 Cup||B||81||05:56:46.4366|
|44||56||Motorsport Services||Seat Leon Supercopa||I2||38||05:38:11.0313|
|45||16||Liqui Moly||BMW Z4 GT3||A||36||01:47:26.8595|
|46||76||Aston Martin St. Gallen||Aston Martin Vantage||C||26||06:00:03.0753|
|47||40||Motor School||Porsche 996 GT3 Cup||GT||13||51:58.1733|
|48||73||ES Australia||Ginetta G50 G4||GT||13||51:59.9930|
|49||77||VIP Petfoods||Aston Martin||GT||11||40:57.0530|
|50||11||JBS Swift||Lamborghini GT3 LP56||A||11||40:57.1130|
|51||38||Mark Griffiths||Ginetta G50 G4||GT||5||18:05.3455|
|OUT||19||Sherrin Rentals||BMW 135i||D||67||03:32:56.8681|
|OUT||51||IMAK / KWIKMIT||Mosler MT900 GT3||A||55||03:36:10.8420|
See below for Speedcafe.com’s live Twitter updates from Hours 3 to 6
The fourth Safety Car of the race has been called seven minutes into Hour 4. Leader Jaeger pits #B12Hr
Jaeger and Hackett pitted immediately when the Safety Car was called, while Andreas Simonson and Van Gisbergen are now in the lane. #B12Hr
The race has restarted at the 3 hour 25 min mark. Andreas Simonson leads Schneider, Holdsworth, Cioci, Allan Simonsen, Griffin, SVG and Luff – all of whom are now on the lead lap #B12Hr
Simonsen has unexpectedly returned to the pits in the Maranello Ferrari #B12hr
Tony Quinn will not drive the VIP Porsche after his earlier crash in the Aston. He will be replaced by Matt Kingsley.
The VIP Porsche is running under protest following controversy over the eligibility of its 2013 upgrade kit #B12Hr
Schneider has taken the lead from Andreas Simonson. The lead runners had to deal with an expiring Sherrin BMW on the previous lap. #B12Hr
The Maranello Ferrari is going to the garage with a collapsed right-front corner. #B12Hr
The fifth Safety Car of the race has been called at the 3 hour 40 minute mark with the #65 Daytona Coupe stopped on the circuit.
Lead lap runners are currently Schneider, Simonson, Holdsworth, Griffin and Luff #B12Hr
The AF Corse Ferrari is now back on track after losing several laps in the garage #B12Hr
Green flags fly once again with 10 minutes to go in the fourth hour. Schneider leads Andreas Simonsen #B12Hr
As expected, the #30 Hunter Motorsport and #12 ASM Porsches are battling it out for Class B honours, currently ninth and 10th outright.
Schneider isn’t messing around in his first stint – setting the #36 Mercedes’ fastest lap last time by, a 2:07.74s
James Davison has taken Drew Russell for the Class B lead #B12Hr
Order and gaps at end Hour 4: Schneider 7s Simonson 14s Holdsworth 23s Luff 1s Griffin #B12Hr
The Corvette’s troubled day continues, with Capelli limping the Trofeo Motorsport entry into the pits. It’s currently 11 laps down in 27th
Schneider’s lead is out to 22s over Simonson. The German continues to dip into the 2:07s when in clear air #B12Hr
Holdsworth meanwhile has had an unexpected trip to pitlane, dropping from third to fifth. #B12Hr
The sixth Safety Car is now called at the 4 hour 13 min mark, leaving Schneider to lead Simonson to the pits #B12Hr
Luff and Griffin also pit from third and fourth respectively. Holdsworth cycles to the front #B12Hr
Griffin returns the Clearwater Ferrari to the pits having previously served a drive-through. #B12Hr
Safety Car appears to be for a Seat that has stopped on the run to Reid Park #B12Hr
Current order: Holdsworth, Roloff, Kristofferson, Baird, Salmon, Kinglsey, Eddy, Davison, Russell, Li #B12Hr
Race restarts with 4 hours and 23 minutes complete. Only five cars on lead lap. #B12Hr
Holdsworth’s unexpected trip to pitlane just before the Safety Car was a drive-through for overlapping on the previous restart #B12Hr
Baird has taken Salmon for fifth. The latter needs to complete around 70 more minutes before Luff and Lowndes can take it to the end #B12Hr
Baird moves to third, displacing Kristoffersson. Clearwater Ferrari is just 11s from the lead. #B12Hr
Baird is now up to second, passing Roloff with 15 minutes remaining in Hour 5. Holdsworth leads by 8s #B12Hr
The Class E leading Racer Industries Astra is limping down Conrod with a problem on its right-front corner #B12Hr
Salmon has lost 100s to Holdsworth over the 30 mins since the restart and is still running fifth #B12Hr
Gap at the front between Holdsworth and Baird is now under four seconds. #B12Hr
Baird takes the lead from Holdsworth at the turn of the hour #B12Hr
Baird has now put the Salmon/Lowndes/Luff Audi a lap down. Just four left on the lead lap #B12Hr
The Holdsworth car rejoined in fourth following its stop. Hackett currently at the wheel and needs to push if he’s to stay ahead of Baird #B12Hr
Salmon has recently pitted the #6 MPC Audi. Timing screen still shows the car owner at the wheel #B12Hr
Baird’s lead over Roloff is edging towards 30 seconds. Kristoffersson is just 5s further adrift in third, while Hackett is now lapped #B12Hr
Salmon has served a drive-through for pitlane speeding, dropping the #6 MPC Audi further away from the leaders #B12Hr
Baird has pitted the Clearwater Ferrari, handing the top spot back to Roloff #B12Hr
Roloff heads to the lane just one lap after Baird. Kristoffersson follows.
We’ve just completed a full hour of green flag running for the first time all day. #B12Hr
Baird is still in the Clearwater Ferrari and now leads once again from Thomas Jaeger, who has replaced Roloff #B12Hr
Baird leads Jaeger by 1 minute and 7 seconds after electing against changing drivers or tyres gained the car a further 30s #B12Hr
The #48 GB Galvanizing Lamborghini has gone to the garage. It was running 10th, five laps down #B12Hr
Having now reached his minimum driving time, Salmon pits the #6 Audi for the lead time in half an hour #B12Hr
The Maranello Ferrari is currently facing the wrong way between McPhillamy Park and Skyline. John Bowe has stepped out of the car #B12Hr
The Salmon Audi meanwhile has not returned to the track following its last pitstop. #B12Hr
The Maranello incident has triggered the race’s seventh Safety Car, 5 hours and 37 minutes in #B12Hr
Kristoffersson uses the Safety Car to pit the Phoenix Audi from third once again #B12Hr
This yellow works poorly for the Clearwater Ferrari, which is on old tyres and loses its substantial lead #B12Hr
The Clearwater Ferrari’s non-seeded driver, Weng Sun, still needs to undertake a considerable amount of driving as well #B12Hr
Third-placed Hackett has used this yellow to top off on fuel. The #63 has been off-sequence since its drive-through penalty. #B12Hr
Current order ahead of restart: Baird, Jaeger, Kristofferson and Holdsworth. Kingsley is fifth, one lap down #B12Hr
The race restarts at the 5 hour and 50 minute mark #B12Hr
The #67 Motorsport Services Porsche has spun at Forrest’s Elbow and is stranded. Safety Car number eight is called as the seventh hour approaches #B12Hr