Waters leads Mustang sweep in Supercars’ pre-season test

Cameron Waters

Ford Mustangs have swept the top three in the Supercars pre-season test at Phillip Island as Cameron Waters nicked the fastest lap at the very end of the day.

Fabian Coulthard had consolidated his hold on top spot with a second lap in the 1:30s bracket, and just the third of the day across the field, in the final 10 minutes.

He was still first at a best lap of 1:30.7383s in the #12 Shell V-Power Mustang when the clock counted down to zero before he was pipped by only 0.0118s by Waters in the Monster-backed Mustang, which Tickford reported was on green tyres.

After several hours during the mid-afternoon with no movement within the top 10, there was a relative wave of personal best laps in the final five minutes which saw James Moffat end up third-fastest in Chaz Mostert’s Supercheap Auto Mustang.

Moffat split Coulthard’s fastest laps, which left him temporarily second-fastest before team-mate Waters’ 1:30.7265s, while David Reynolds was put back to fourth.

Reynolds had been fastest at the halfway mark with a 1:30.9532s which he set not long before the first of two red flags, both called to allow the track to be cleaned.

Erebus Motorsport had already packed up by the time he lost first position to Coulthard just past the six-and-a-half hour mark of the eight-hour day, with their Penrite ZB Commodores having continued to breach the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit’s noise limit.

Car #9, driven by both Reynolds and Pirtek Enduro Cup co-driver Luke Youlden, and Car #99 of Anton De Pasquale had spent around five hours in first and third respectively, with the latter ended up seventh.

Between them, Will Davison shot up from 23rd in the dying stages to make it four Mustangs in the top five for Milwaukee Racing, while Scott Pye was sixth-fastest in the first of the Mobil 1 Mega Racing ZB Commodores.

The top 10 was rounded out by Scott McLaughlin (DJR Team Penske Mustang), James Courtney (Walkinshaw Andretti United ZB Commodore), and Lee Holdsworth (The Bottle-O Tickford Mustang), the latter of whom also lifted late.

Rick Kelly was Kelly Racing’s best in the Castrol Nissan Altima in 13th, while Triple Eight Race Engineering had a quiet day with Shane van Gisbergen 14th in the first of the Red Bull HRT ZB Commodores and Jamie Whincup 19th.

Mark Winterbottom’s first full day with Team 18 ended with the former Ford man 16th-fastest, while the rookies held up the timing screen with Garry Jacobson (Kelly Racing) 23rd and Macauley Jones (Brad Jones Racing) 24th.

Several co-drivers got laps during the day, namely Tickford’s Michael Caruso, Moffat, and Thomas Randle (Car #5); Youlden; WAU’s Warren Luff and Jack Perkins; Tim Blanchard (Car #8); Garth Tander (Car #97); and Steven Richards (Car #18).

Todd Kelly spent time behind the wheel of his brother’s #15 Altima, while timing showed Rick Kelly have also steered Jacobson’s Rabble.Club-backed machine.

The second red flag came not long before seven hours in, with a total of almost 40 minutes lost due to the stoppages.

The first event of the 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship is the Superloop Adelaide 500 on February 28-March 3.

Results: Pre-season test

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver(s) Car Fastest lap Split Laps
1 6 Monster Energy Racing Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 1:30.7265 76
2 12 Shell V-Power Racing Team Fabian Coulthard Ford Mustang GT 1:30.7383 0:00.0118 87
3 55 Supercheap Auto Racing C.Mostert/J.Moffat Ford Mustang GT 1:30.9390 0:00.2125 77
4 9 Erebus Penrite Racing D.Reynolds/L.Youlden Holden Commodore ZB 1:30.9532 0:00.2267 47
5 23 Milwaukee Racing Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 1:31.0066 0:00.2801 63
6 2 Mobil 1 MEGA Racing S.Pye/W.Luff Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.0293 0:00.3028 68
7 99 Erebus Penrite Racing Anton De Pasquale Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.0334 0:00.3069 49
8 17 Shell V-Power Racing Team Scott McLaughlin Ford Mustang GT 1:31.0656 0:00.3391 61
9 22 Mobil 1 MEGA Racing J.Courtney/J.Perkins Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.1813 0:00.4548 71
10 5 The Bottle-O Racing Team Lee Holdsworth Ford Mustang GT 1:31.1930 0:00.4665 57
11 8 National Pharmacies Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.3366 0:00.6101 90
12 34 Boost Mobile Racing James Golding Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.3758 0:00.6493 73
13 15 Castrol Racing R.Kelly/T.Kelly Nissan Altima 1:31.3841 0:00.6576 80
14 97 Red Bull Holden Racing Team Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.3872 0:00.6607 89
15 7 Kelly Racing Andre Heimgartner Nissan Altima 1:31.4287 0:00.7022 86
16 18 IRWIN Racing M.Winterbottom/S.Richards Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.4303 0:00.7038 67
17 14 Freightliner Racing Tim Slade Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.5183 0:00.7918 105
18 35 Matt Stone Racing Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.7429 0:01.0164 52
19 88 Red Bull Holden Racing Team Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.8148 0:01.0883 77
20 19 Truck ASSIST Jack Le Brocq Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.8513 0:01.1248 42
21 33 Boost Mobile Racing Richie Stanaway Holden Commodore ZB 1:31.9211 0:01.1946 81
22 78 Team Harvey Norman Simona De Silvestro Nissan Altima 1:32.0390 0:01.3125 71
23 3 RABBLE.club G.Jacobson/R.Kelly Nissan Altima 1:32.0659 0:01.3394 73
24 21 Team CoolDrive Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 1:32.2312 0:01.5047 92

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