Scott McLaughlin has narrowly edged out Ford Performance Racing duo Will Davison and Mark Winterbottom to end the third V8 Supercars practice session in Adelaide on top of the time sheets.
The reigning Dunlop Series winner recorded a best of 1:21.57s on his final lap of the 30 minute hit-out as new tyres brought about a flurry of fast times.
Davison moved to within 0.08s of the Fujitsu Racing Holden after the chequered flag fell, bumping team-mate Winterbottom to third.
Walkinshaw Holden drivers Russell Ingall and James Courtney continued their strong start to the day in fourth and fifth respectively while Jonathon Webb, Alexandre Premat, Shane van Gisbergen, Scott Pye and Jamie Whincup completed the top 10.
Whincup’s team-mate Craig Lowndes was 14th after completing the longest unbroken spell of the day so far, clocking 18 consecutive laps.
Although just eighth at sessions end, Van Gisbergen again showed the competitiveness of his Tekno Holden package by sitting atop the times for much of the going thanks to an early 1:22.14s effort.
Rick Kelly repeated his Practice 1 effort of 11th fastest. The Jack Daniel’s Nissan had been as high as third halfway through the session, and later survived a brush with the Turn 4 wall in a car he described as being “very aggressive in the rear”.
Kelly’s Nissan stable-mates Caruso, Moffat and Todd Kelly were 16th, 19th and 21st respectively, with Moffat continuing to fight brakes problems in his Norton-backed entry.
The Erebus Mercedes AMGs of Lee Holdsworth, Tim Slade and Maro Engel filled 24th through 26th as they struggled to match the increasing pace of their rivals.
The fourth and final practice session of the day will commence at 1345, with qualifying and the Top 10 Shootout to follow later in the afternoon.
See below for the full Practice 3 result
|1||Fujitsu Racing GRM||Scott McLaughlin||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.5726|
|2||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||Will Davison||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.6478||0:00.0752|
|3||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.6596||0:00.0870|
|4||Supercheap Auto Racing||Russell Ingall||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.7181||0:00.1455|
|5||Holden Racing Team||James Courtney||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.9117||0:00.3391|
|6||Tekno Autosports||Jonathon Webb||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.0127||0:00.4401|
|7||Fujitsu Racing GRM||Alexandre Premat||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.0686||0:00.4960|
|8||TEKNO Team VIP||Shane Van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.1464||0:00.5738|
|9||e`kol Racing||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.1651||0:00.5925|
|10||Red Bull Racing Australia||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.3086||0:00.7360|
|11||Jack Daniel’s Racing||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:22.3642||0:00.7916|
|12||Team BOC||Jason Bright||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.4510||0:00.8784|
|13||Lockwood Racing||Fabian Coulthard||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.4983||0:00.9257|
|14||Red Bull Racing Australia||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.5696||0:00.9970|
|15||The Bottle-O FPR Ford||David Reynolds||Ford Falcon FG||1:22.5943||0:01.0217|
|16||Norton 360 Racing||Michael Caruso||Nissan Altima||1:22.6076||0:01.0350|
|17||Dodo Insurance Racing||Dean Fiore||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.7020||0:01.1294|
|18||Team HIFLEX||Tony D’Alberto||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.7832||0:01.2106|
|19||Norton 360 Racing||James Moffat||Nissan Altima||1:22.8080||0:01.2354|
|20||Wilson Security Racing||David Wall||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.8898||0:01.3172|
|21||Jack Daniel’s Racing||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:23.0008||0:01.4282|
|22||Holden Racing Team||Garth Tander||Holden Commodore VF||1:23.0621||0:01.4895|
|23||Jeld-wen FPR Ford||Alex Davison||Ford Falcon FG||1:23.2241||0:01.6515|
|24||Irwin Racing||Lee Holdsworth||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:23.3531||0:01.7805|
|25||Heavy Haulage Racing||Tim Slade||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:23.4695||0:01.8969|
|26||SP Tools Racing||Maro Engel||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:23.8920||0:02.3194|
|27||Wilson Security Racing||Jonny Reid||Ford Falcon FG||1:23.9514||0:02.3788|
|28||Advam||Tim Blanchard||Ford Falcon FG||1:23.9620||0:02.3894|
See below for Speedcafe.com’s Clipsal 500 Adelaide Race Guide