Reynolds fastest, Lowndes suffers big shunt
David Reynolds topped the times in an eventful opening practice session at the WD-40 Phillip Island 500 which ended with a big shunt for Craig Lowndes.
The Erebus Motorsport driver lit up the timing screens in the dying minutes of the 40 minute hit-out after fitting a much greener tyre for the final runs.
Reynolds posted a 1:30.84s which demoted Red Bull HRT’s Shane van Gisbergen, who was among a group of drivers to improve following a change of rubber.
The Kiwi was 0.0011s adrift of the Erebus Commodore.
However, the session came to frightening end when Lowndes was involved in a high speed crash on the entry to Lukey Heights.
The Triple Eight drivers appeared to suffer a right front tyre failure which sent him into the barriers at speed. Lowndes managed to climb from the damaged #888 wreck without issue.
The crash occurred just seconds after DJR Team Penske’s Fabian Coulthard suffered a tyre failure which sent the Ford driver off on the exit of Stoner.
Nissan Motorsport’s Todd Kelly emerged third fastest ahead of Will Davison, who impressed in his first run in the repaired Tekno Autosports Commodore after suffering a back injury in Tasmania.
“There is a lot of load through your body here, I could feel it in the high speed stuff but hopefully it will just sort of wake the body up a bit and it will only get better,” said Davison after his first run.
“The car is good straight out of the truck and it is an amazing job by the team. I was pretty quick straight up and hopefully we can just improve lap by lap.”
The Preston Hire Holden of Lee Holdsworth was fifth fastest ahead of James Courtney (Mobil 1 HSV Racing) and Tim Slade (Brad Jones Racing).
Coulthard ended the session in eighth despite an off in front of DJRTP team-mate Scott McLaughlin, who had held the top spot earlier in the session.
Chaz Mostert was the best placed Prodrive driver as he rounded out the top 10 ahead of Jamie Whincup and Scott Pye, who topped the times at the halfway mark.
The session was red flagged twice with the first stoppage occurring with 23 minutes remaining when Cameron Waters slid off the road and become stranded on the exit of the Southern Loop.
Nissan Motorsport’s Simona de Silvestro mirrored Waters by going off at the same corner which brought out the second red flag with 18 minutes left on the clock.
The Virgin Australia Supercars Championship field will return to the track for another 40 minutes session at 1515 AEST.
Results: Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit: Practice One
|1||Erebus Penrite Racing||David Reynolds||Holden Commodore VF||1:30.84|
|2||Red Bull Holden Racing Aust||Shane Van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||1:30.84||0:00.0011|
|3||carsales Racing||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:30.91||0:00.0708|
|4||TEKNO Woodstock Racing||Will Davison||Holden Commodore VF||1:30.98||0:00.1351|
|5||Preston Hire Racing||Lee Holdsworth||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.10||0:00.2558|
|6||Mobil 1 HSV Racing||James Courtney||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.13||0:00.2855|
|7||Freightliner Racing||Tim Slade||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.17||0:00.3321|
|8||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Fabian Coulthard||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.19||0:00.3518|
|9||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Scott McLaughlin||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.28||0:00.4401|
|10||Supercheap Auto Racing||Chaz Mostert||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.32||0:00.4800|
|11||Red Bull Holden Racing Aust||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.33||0:00.4885|
|12||Mobil 1 HSV Racing||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.35||0:00.5039|
|13||Nissan Motorsport||Michael Caruso||Nissan Altima||1:31.55||0:00.7078|
|14||Sengled Racing||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:31.69||0:00.8492|
|15||The Bottle-O Racing Team||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.72||0:00.8815|
|16||Wilson Security Racing GRM||Garth Tander||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.74||0:00.8980|
|17||TeamVortex||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.85||0:01.0050|
|18||Wilson Security Racing GRM||James Moffat||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.85||0:01.0051|
|19||MEGA Racing||Jason Bright||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.90||0:01.0585|
|20||Monster Energy Racing||Cameron Waters||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:31.95||0:01.1114|
|21||BIANTE 1:1||Nick Percat||Holden Commodore VF||1:31.97||0:01.1308|
|22||Erebus GB Galvanizing Racing||Dale Wood||Holden Commodore VF||1:32.01||0:01.1680|
|23||Team Harvey Norman||Simona De Silvestro||Nissan Altima||1:32.30||0:01.4525|
|24||Team CoolDrive||Tim Blanchard||Holden Commodore VF||1:32.83||0:01.9905|
|25||Repair Management Aust Racing||Alex Rullo||Holden Commodore VF||1:33.80||0:02.9524|
|26||Repair Management Aust Racing||Taz Douglas||Holden Commodore VF||1:34.05||0:03.2091|