Reigning Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge winner Richard Muscat topped practice for the Australian GT Championship presented by Pirelli as part of the Shannons Nationals meeting at Sandown.
Muscat immediately sprang to the top in his competitive debut for Erebus GT in the Mercedes AMG SLS GT3 by topping the third practice session in the 24-car field.
He clocked 1:09.7504s, just under a second quicker than Justin McMillan (Lamborghini Gallardo) with James Koundouris third fastest in a Porsche GT3-R.
“It’s a very different thing to drive compared to the Porsche I was racing last year,” Muscat said.
“It’s taking time to learn how to drive this car and adapt to things like traction control and ABS, as well as the fact the engine is at the front rather than the rear, but it’s been great.
“Working with guys like (Erebus team manager) Barry Ryan and Jack LeBrocq (who raced with the team at the recent Bathurst 12-hour), has made it easier. It’s a great process but you never stop learning.”
PORSCHE GT3 CUP CHALLENGE
Opening round winner Fraser Ross was dominant across the two practice sessions, ending up 0.7s quicker than John Goodacre and John Karytinos.
Ross completed the final practice run in 1:12.2817s ahead of Goodacre’s 1:12.9497s with Karytinos putting in a 1:13.0818s best.
SUPER SIX TOURING CARS
In the third and final practice Gavin Ross set the benchmark in 1:24.2550s ahead of Travis Lindorff (1:24.7044s) with Wayne King clocking the third fastest time in 1:24.9832s in a Commodore sweep out.
Former Suzuki Swift series star Ben Grice ended up with the 9th fastest time in a Falcon.
Championship leader Simon Hodge topped both F3 sessions today, edging out title rivals Ben Gersekowski and John Magro in his Team BRM Mygale.
Hodge (Mygale) clocked 1:08.0506s with Dallara driver Gersekowski putting in a 1:08.5689s best to edge out Magro’s 1:08.7490s.
AUSTRALIAN MANUFACTURERS CHAMPIONSHIP
Bob Pearson and Glenn Seton headed the field in practice in their Mitsubishi Evo 10, clocking a 1:19.5209s best ahead of Garry Holt and Stuart Kostera’s Evo 10 (1:20.3300s) with Ralph Bellamy designed BMW 1M of Beric Lynton (1:21.4411s) third best.
RADICAL AUSTRALIA CUP
Tim Berryman (RAW Racing) showed the way in final practice, clocking 1:09.8685s with Neale Muston (Excalibur Racing) second in 1:10.3154s while Peter White (First Neon) was third in 1:10.7455s as 20 cars turned laps.