Craig Lowndes’ bid to equal Peter Brock’s marker of nine wins in the annual pre-Bathurst endurance race is on track following a record setting Friday practice.
Eight cars eclipsed Will Davison’s practice lap record for the V8 Supercars at Sandown in the closing minutes of the third and final session of the day.
Will Davison had sat at the top of the order when the chequered flag flew, only to see Lee Holdsworth and then Lowndes lap even faster.
Lowndes’ time of 1:08.93s eclipsed Holdsworth’s effort by just 0.028s.
Davison, whose car was steered by co-driver Steve Owen in the final minutes, ended up third ahead of Scott McLaughlin, Alexandre Premat, Mark Winterbottom, Garth Tander and Alex Davison.
The 2013 specification ‘Car of the Future’ has proven slower than its predecessor throughout much of the year, with resurfacing of several corners clearly contributing to today’s speed.
Lowndes has won V8 Supercars’ annual 500km endurance race eight times in the last 17 years, tasting success at Sandown (1996, 1997, 2005, 2007 and 2012), as well as in the years it was held at Queensland Raceway (2000) and Phillip Island (2010 and 2011).
Brock meanwhile won each of his nine trophies at the Melbourne venue.
A final practice session will take place on Saturday morning ahead of a 20 minute qualifying session and two 60km qualifying races.
See below for the Practice 3 result
|1||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||01:08.93|
|2||Lee Holdsworth||Mercedes E63 AMG||01:08.96||00:00.03|
|3||W.Davison/S.Owen||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.02||00:00.08|
|4||Scott McLaughlin||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.03||00:00.09|
|5||A.Premat/G.Ritter||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.05||00:00.12|
|6||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.06||00:00.13|
|7||G.Tander/N.Percat||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.22||00:00.29|
|8||Alex Davison||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.33||00:00.39|
|9||Jason Bright||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.43||00:00.49|
|10||David Reynolds||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.44||00:00.50|
|11||J.Courtney/G.Murphy||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.47||00:00.53|
|12||R.Ingall/R.Briscoe||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.51||00:00.58|
|13||S.Pye/P.Morris||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.56||00:00.62|
|14||Tim Slade||Mercedes E63 AMG||01:09.57||00:00.64|
|16||Tony D’Alberto||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.64||00:00.71|
|17||S.Van Gisbergen/||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.65||00:00.72|
|18||J.Whincup/P.Dumbrell||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.67||00:00.73|
|19||Fabian Coulthard||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.69||00:00.75|
|20||Maro Engel||Mercedes E63 AMG||01:09.72||00:00.78|
|21||J.Webb/M.Lieb||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.75||00:00.82|
|22||David Wall||Holden Commodore VF||01:09.79||00:00.85|
|23||Chaz Mostert||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.86||00:00.93|
|25||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||01:09.93||00:00.99|
|26||T.Blanchard/A.Walsh||Ford Falcon FG||01:09.94||00:01.00|
|28||Dean Fiore||Holden Commodore VF||01:10.26||00:01.32|