With suggestions that next weekend’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 could be the fastest ever, we take a look at all of the lap records broken so far in 2019.
Superloop Adelaide 500
Chaz Mostert might have finished 15th in Race 2 of the season after being one of the two parties who blocked pit lane in a bizarre crash, but the Tickford Racing driver did manage to eke 0.0418s out of the race lap record when he clocked a 1:20.3792s on Lap 60, early into his final stint.
The record holder had been that afternoon’s race winner, Scott McLaughlin, who set the previous benchmark in his first race weekend for the Shell V-Power Racing Team in 2017.
Beaurepaires Melbourne 400
Fabian Coulthard broke his own, two-year-old record (1:54.3972s) in Armor All Qualifying for Race 3 of the season at Albert Park, by more than two tenths of a second.
He still lined up second on the grid for the opening race of the weekend, however, because team-mate McLaughlin broke it by more than half a second when he put the #17 Mustang on pole with a 1:53.8280s.
Mostert broke a race lap record for the second event in a row when he took the Supercheap Auto Mustang to 1:55.7280s in the corresponding race, amid a charge from 22nd to fifth in 25 laps. Craig Lowndes’ old marker had stood since 2011.
Tyrepower Tasmania SuperSprint
Mark Winterbottom not only got Irwin Racing’s first pole on the Saturday at Symmons Plains, he ended up with a new race lap record of 51.2276s in the Sunday race, pipping Scott Pye’s year-old effort by 0.0346s.
However, the new practice/qualifying lap record stayed in Jamie Whincup’s hands. The Red Bull Holden Racing Team driver set a 50.5084s in Practice 2, and team-mate Shane van Gisbergen a 50.5271s, after Whincup had logged a 50.5609s a year prior.
WD-40 Phillip Island SuperSprint
DJR Team Penske was arguably at its most dominant this year to date at the Island so it was no surprise that McLaughlin moved his lap record from 1:31.2142s to 1:30.9508s in the first race of the weekend.
Coulthard followed him home on the road and also went under the old lap record when he set a 1:31.1893s on Lap 2.
Pirtek Perth SuperNight
A resurfaced Barbagallo Wanneroo Raceway almost guaranteed that lap records would tumble, and so it was that every single driver went under Jason Bright’s 55.9440s, set all the way back in 2004, in Friday night’s race.
Walkinshaw Andretti United’s James Courtney finished dead last after picking up an early puncture but ironically set the fastest lap of all when he reeled out a 53.7293s on his 48th tour of the Perth track, not long after a second pit stop.
McLaughlin ultimately took 1.7589s off the pre-event practice/qualifying record on the Friday afternoon, although that was a less ancient standard which he set two years earlier.
Truck Assist Winton SuperSprint
The Kiwi beat Mostert’s 1:18.7603s from 2016 when he qualified on pole for Race 14 at Winton by more than half a second, with a 1:18.5233s.
BetEasy Darwin Triple Crown
McLaughlin’s roll continued when he became the first driver to win the Triple Crown at Hidden Valley, and he snipped 0.0801s out of his practice/qualifying lap record when he took provisional pole on the Sunday with a 1:05.4737s.
Watpac Townsville 400
Supercars’ North Queensland event is the only one this year where neither the race nor practice/qualifying record has fallen, perhaps in part due to rain falling on the Friday and Sunday of the event.
Century Batteries Ipswich SuperSprint
McLaughlin took both records on the Sunday at Queensland Raceway, setting a 1:08.3985s in Practice 4 and a 1:09.6229s in that afternoon’s 20th race of the season.
He already held the practice/qualifying lap record and took the race lap record of Courtney, who had set a 1:09.6591s in 2018.
OTR SuperSprint – The Bend
With the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship converging on The Bend for just the second time, lap records were not unexpected.
Of the 26 starters, 17 drivers broke the record in Saturday’s Race 21, with David Reynolds’ 1:49.4042s the very best. The Penrite Racing driver was in fact more than a second faster than the best racing lap from the first visit.
Whincup had held that record, and his practice/qualifying lap record was also beaten, first by McLaughlin in Practice 2, then again in Practice 3, by Mostert in a thrilling Saturday qualifying session, and finally by McLaughlin in Sunday’s qualifying.
ITM Auckland SuperSprint
Pukekohe Park Raceway had been partially resurfaced since the last Supercars event there, with 15 breaking the lap record in Race 23 and three usurping the new benchmark in Race 24.
On each afternoon, Whincup became the new lap record holder, ultimately at 1:02.3719s. That came just after the controversial Safety Car period, when the Triple Eight driver had clear air as the race leader.
Van Gisbergen ended up the practice/qualifying record holder with the 1:01.5480s that got him pole for Race 23.
Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000
McLaughlin is the fastest driver around Mount Panorama in a Supercar courtesy of the memorable 2:03.8312s he set in the Armor All Top 10 Shootout in 2017, but he expects that to be toppled before qualifying, weather permitting.
In terms of race laps, Reynolds has been on song in recent years. He broke the lap record with a 2:06.2769s in 2016, set the fastest lap in 2017 (2:07.5013s), then further lowered the record last year to 2:06.1492s.
Proceedings at this year’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 get underway with three practice sessions on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Practice 7 on Saturday is now open to all drivers rather than additional drivers only.