Coulthard fastest in opening Sandown practice

Fabian Coulthard. pic @supercars via twitter

Fabian Coulthard. pic @supercars via twitter

Fabian Coulthard put DJR Team Penske at the top of the order in opening practice for the Wilson Security Sandown 500.

The Kiwi’s 1:09.12s best came in the dying seconds of the 30 minute session which marked the only running available to primary drivers today.

Red Bull’s Shane van Gisbergen had led the way until the final four minutes where Andre Heimgartner, Jamie Whincup, Chaz Mostert and eventually Coulthard took turns at the top.

Mostert was just 0.09s adrift of Coulthard in the final order ahead of Van Gisbergen, who also improved late, Whincup, Heimgartner and David Reynolds.


Coulthard, whose car is dressed in Team Penske’s 1972 Indianapolis 500 winning colours as part of this weekend’s retro round, ended Practice 1 encouraged by his speed.

“It’s a good start, I’d much rather be here than down the order,” said Coulthard, who will hand over to co-driver Luke Youlden for the day’s remaining sessions.

“We’ve worked hard in the couple of weeks before this round and had a test day.

“Hopefully this will put us in good stead for the rest of the weekend.”

Mostert, who is joined by Steve Owen in the Supercheap Ford for this year’s Pirtek Enduro Cup, was also happy with the balance of his car.

“I’m really surprised we’re up the pointy end,” said Mostert.

“The car felt pretty good out of the gate and to be honest I don’t think we’re going to be too far away.

“It’s going to be pretty low stress getting Steve up to speed. I’m pretty happy.”

Seventh through 10th in the Practice 1 order were Tim Slade, James Moffat, Scott McLaughlin and Craig Lowndes.

Moffat’s session was momentarily interrupted by a loose drivers’ window which required a trip to the garage.

The first of the afternoon’s co-driver sessions will kick-off at 1335 local time.

Result: Virgin Australia Supercars Championship Wilson Security Sandown 500 Practice 1

1 DJR Team Penske Fabian Coulthard Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.12
2 Supercheap Auto Racing Chaz Mostert Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.20 00.08
3 Red Bull Racing Australia Shane Van Gisbergen Holden Commodore VF 1:09.28 00.16
4 Red Bull Racing Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore VF 1:09.30 00.17
5 ABRO/Repair Management Aust Andre Heimgartner Holden Commodore VF 1:09.30 00.18
6 Erebus Motorsport Penrite David Reynolds Holden Commodore VF 1:09.34 00.21
7 Freightliner Racing Tim Slade Holden Commodore VF 1:09.34 00.22
8 Wilson Security Racing GRM James Moffat Volvo S60 1:09.37 00.25
9 Wilson Security Racing GRM Scott McLaughlin Volvo S60 1:09.46 00.34
10 TeamVortex Craig Lowndes Holden Commodore VF 1:09.50 00.38
11 DJR Team Penske Scott Pye Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.51 00.38
12 Monster Energy Racing Cameron Waters Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.53 00.41
13 ABRO/Repair Management Aust Nick Percat Holden Commodore VF 1:09.53 00.41
14 Super Black Racing Chris Pither Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.56 00.43
15 Holden Racing Team James Courtney Holden Commodore VF 1:09.57 00.44
16 Holden Racing Team Garth Tander Holden Commodore VF 1:09.58 00.46
17 Nissan Motorsport Michael Caruso Nissan Altima 1:09.63 00.50
18 Team BOC Jason Bright Holden Commodore VF 1:09.76 00.64
19 Sengled Motorsport Rick Kelly Nissan Altima 1:09.81 00.68
20 Preston Hire Racing Lee Holdsworth Holden Commodore VF 1:09.81 00.68
21 Team Cooldrive Tim Blanchard Holden Commodore VF 1:09.83 00.71
22 Team Darrell Lea STIX Will Davison Holden Commodore VF 1:09.89 00.77
23 The Bottle-O Racing Team Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon FG/X 1:09.95 00.83
24 carsales Racing Todd Kelly Nissan Altima 1:09.97 00.85
25 GB Galvanizing Racing Dale Wood Nissan Altima 1:10.13 01.00
26 Plus Fitness Racing Shae Davies Holden Commodore VF 1:10.41 01.29

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