Back to basics approach benefitting Tickford
Cameron Waters believes a back to basics approach has helped Tickford Racing deliver the best car he has experienced this season which resulted in strong pace in practice at Barbagallo Raceway.
The Monster Energy backed driver ended Practice 2 second fastest only 0.0180s shy of pace setter Scott McLaughlin.
Waters’ pace was followed by team-mates Mark Winterbottom and Chaz Mostert who will progress to the second segment of qualifying tomorrow after finishing sixth and eighth in the second 45 minute session.
However, rookie Richie Stanaway was 24th following his first day at the tricky Perth circuit.
Tickford Racing has struggled for outright pace and results this season having yet to score a podium finish across its four drivers, which has resulted in the team taking a back to basics approach.
“I guess we kind of tried a few things earlier in the year and didn’t really work and we kind of got lost with getting pace out of our car,” said Waters.
“End of last year we were quite competitive so took a step back and we’ll work again for what we kind of did today and this weekend.
“It’s probably the best the car’s felt all year to be honest. (It’s) positive at the moment.
“I guess it’s only practice but it’s always good to be up there and not far off these boys (Shell V-Power Racing) who are really the benchmark at the moment.
“You kind of engineer the car and make it do things and you just kind of forget other parts of what cars need.
“So we’ve just taken a step back and gotten everything kind of where we think it needed to be and it was really quick.
“I was surprised I actually did the time to be honest when they said a 54.8 was the quickest I was nup, there was no way.”
Waters is however hopeful the team will be able to capitalise on the changes with a set of strong results.
“Obviously the results have been really bad for our team,” Waters added.
“We want to be a lot better than that but saying that there’s been a lot of soul searching but you know you’ve got a good bunch of people around you when they’re staying positive and working harder than ever and so powerful to turn around this weekend, which is nice.
“The vibe’s getting better. I guess when you get a good result or you’re up the front a little bit it just makes it all worthwhile.”
Tickford Racing boss Tim Edwards confirmed to Speedcafe.com that his team had taken a bold approach to this weekend’s races following a frustrating start.
“Well when you’re on the back foot you tend to probably make some bolder decisions and throw a lot more at the car than when you’re kind of in the sweetspot,” Edwards told Speedcafe.com.
“We did make a conscious effort this weekend to ‘You know what, if the car’s not quite perfect, let’s just massage it rather than trying to throw a completely new set-up at the car and then every time the driver goes out he’s trying to learn how to drive a completely different car.’
“There has been a little bit of that and we’ve kind of just calmed the farm a bit.”
The Supercars field will return for a 20 minute practice at 1000 before the first segment of qualifying at 1155 local time.