Whincup edges Fords in first Sandown practice
Jamie Whincup pipped a quartet of Fords to end opening practice for the Sandown 500 at the top of the order.
The Red Bull Holden’s best of 1:09.52s came in the dying seconds of the 30 minute hit-out, proving 0.1s quicker than Chaz Mostert in the leading Prodrive Falcon.
Whincup’s new car showed no signs of the vibration issue that halted its recent test at Queensland Raceway.
“The guys and girls have done a great job and there’s no vibration, so now we can focus on going fast,” said Whincup.
“The session was promising but we’ve got to keep our heads down and put our best foot forward for the rest of the weekend.”
The Fords of Mark Winterbottom, David Reynolds and Scott Pye completed the top five, having all spent time at in the top spot during the session.
Shane van Gisbergen, Nick Percat, Scott McLaughlin, Jason Bright and Todd Kelly completed the top 10.
The fastest time proved 0.3s adrift of Whincup’s best from the opening Sandown session last year, despite the implementation of a new final drive ratio that allows a higher top speed on the back straight.
Several drivers, including Whincup, endured off-track excursions at Turn 1, while Fabian Coulthard and James Moffat both suffered harmless spins at Turn 4.
Reynolds meanwhile completed the session with a caved in bonnet on the The Bottle-O Ford in a repeat of the issues seen with the FG Xs at the pre-season test.
The Nissans of Michael Caruso and Rick Kelly, which are both running Nissan’s new engine for the first time today, ended the run a the bottom of the time sheets.
The primary drivers spent the entire first session in the cars, with both of this afternoon’s 30 minute runs for co-drivers only.
Result: V8 Supercars Wilson Security Sandown 500 Practice 1
|1||Red Bull Racing Australia||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||1:09.5169|
|2||Pepsi Max Crew||Chaz Mostert||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:09.6177||0:00.1008|
|3||Pepsi Max Crew||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:09.7873||0:00.2704|
|4||The Bottle-O Racing Team||David Reynolds||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:09.8615||0:00.3446|
|5||DJR Team Penske||Scott Pye||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:09.8624||0:00.3455|
|6||Team Darrell Lea STIX||Shane Van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||1:09.9844||0:00.4675|
|7||Repair Management Aust Racing||Nick Percat||Holden Commodore VF||1:09.9939||0:00.4770|
|8||Wilson Security Racing GRM||Scott McLaughlin||Volvo S60||1:10.0053||0:00.4884|
|9||Team BOC||Jason Bright||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.0510||0:00.5341|
|10||Nissan Motorsport||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:10.2355||0:00.7186|
|11||Walkinshaw Racing||Lee Holdsworth||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.2511||0:00.7342|
|12||Freightliner Racing||Fabian Coulthard||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.2514||0:00.7345|
|13||Holden Racing Team||Jack Perkins||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.2844||0:00.7675|
|14||Nissan Motorsport||James Moffat||Nissan Altima||1:10.3324||0:00.8155|
|15||Team Cooldrive||Tim Blanchard||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.4133||0:00.8964|
|16||Supercheap Auto Racing||Tim Slade||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.4151||0:00.8982|
|17||Holden Racing Team||Garth Tander||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.4188||0:00.9019|
|18||GB Galvanizing Racing||Dale Wood||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.4747||0:00.9578|
|19||Wilson Security Racing GRM||David Wall||Volvo S60||1:10.4877||0:00.9708|
|20||Erebus Motorsport V8||Will Davison||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:10.5076||0:00.9907|
|21||Super Black Racing||Andre Heimgartner||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:10.5119||0:00.9950|
|22||Erebus Motorsport V8||Ashley Walsh||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:10.5249||0:01.0080|
|23||Red Bull Racing Australia||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||1:10.5502||0:01.0333|
|24||Nissan Motorsport||Michael Caruso||Nissan Altima||1:10.6718||0:01.1549|
|25||Nissan Motorsport||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:10.6935||0:01.1766|