WTCR star tops opening TCR Aus practice

Nestor Girolami

Honda WTCR driver Nestor Girolami has set a blistering pace in opening practice for TCR Australia Round 6 at Sandown.

The Argentine was almost a second faster than his nearest rival on his first ever drive around the suburban Melbourne circuit.

Girolami went to the top of the timesheets early in the session but it wasn’t until the final 15 minutes when he hit his stride in the #38 Wall Racing Honda Civic Type R.

The WTCR star posted a 1:15.66s in the final moments which proved to be 0.8s faster than series leader Will Brown (HMO Customer Racing, Hyundai).

Brown was fast from the outset but was unable to match the ultimate pace of Girolami.

Tony D’Alberto was third fastest in his Wall Racing Honda albeit 1.1s shy of his new team-mate.

Nathan Morcom put his HMO Customer Racing Hyundai into fourth ahead of Garry Rogers Motorsport’s Jordan Cox (Alfa Romeo).

Series contender Dylan O’Keeffe (Ash Seward Motorsport, Alfa Romeo) could only manage sixth.

The top 10 was completed by Russell Ingall (Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi), John Martin (Wall Racing, Honda), Chris Pither (Garry Rogers Motorsport, Renault) and Andre Heimgartner (Kelly Racing, Opel).

Triple Eight Supercars co-driver Garth Tander ended up in 15th position.

The field will return for a second 30 minute practice session at 1420 AEST.

Results: TCR Australia Practice 1, Sandown

Pos Num Driver Team Car Time Gap
1   38 Nestor Girolami (ARG)   Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   1:15.6664
2   30 William Brown (Qld)     HMO Customer Racing            Hyundai i30N         1:16.5564 00.8900
3   50 Tony D’Alberto (Vic)    Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   1:16.7969 01.1305
4   11 Nathan Morcom (NSW)     HMO Customer Racing            Hyundai i30N         1:17.1506 01.4842
5    7 Jordan Cox (NSW)        Garry Rogers Motorsport        Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1:17.1512 01.4848
6    9 Dylan O’Keeffe (Vic)    Ashley Seward Motorsport       Alfa Romeo Giulietta 1:17.1635 01.4971
7  100 Russell Ingall (Qld)    Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            1:17.4295 01.7631
8   24 John Martin (NSW)       Wall Racing                    Honda Civic Type R   1:17.6111 01.9447
9   33 Chris Pither (NZ)       Garry Rogers Motorsport        Renault Megane RS    1:17.9094 02.2430
10 777 Andre Heimgartner (NZ)  Kelly Racing                   Holden Astra         1:18.0193 02.3529
11  97 Liam McAdam (Qld)       Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            1:18.3421 02.6757
12   8 Jason Bright (Vic)      Taskforce/Melb Performance Cnt Volkswagon Golf GTI  1:18.4580 02.7916
13  62 Bryce Fullwood (NT)     Kelly Racing                   Holden Astra         1:18.5358 02.8694
14   2 Aaron Cameron (Vic)     Melbourne Performance Centre   Volkswagen Golf GTI  1:18.6748 03.0084
15   3 Garth Tander (Vic)      Melbourne Performance Centre   Audi RS 3            1:18.9203 03.2539
16  34 James Moffat (Vic)      Garry Rogers Motorsport        Renault Megane RS    1:18.9851 03.3187
17  35 Alexandra Whitley (Qld) Melbourne Performance Centre   Volkswagon Golf GTI  1:21.8506 06.1842

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