James Courtney has pipped Shane van Gisbergen to Practice 1 honours at the Robson Civil Projects Townsville SuperSprint by 0.0568s.
The Tickford Racing driver was one of the last to complete the half-hour session, recording a 1:12.6292s in the #44 Boost Mobile Mustang.
In doing so, he not only knocked the #97 Red Bull Holden Racing Team entry out of first position, but also saw that the top four would be covered by less than a tenth of a second.
Walkinshaw Andretti United’s Bryce Fullwood (#2 Mobil 1 Middy’s ZB Commodore) was briefly fastest with a 1:12.6996s before van Gisbergen bettered it, and Scott Pye (#20 DeWalt ZB Commodore) ended up fourth with a 1:12.7248s.
Of the title contenders, Scott McLaughlin (#17 Shell V-Power Mustang) finished ninth courtesy of the 1:12.9798s which he set on his first flyer and Jamie Whincup (#88 Red Bull HRT ZB Commodore) wound up 18th on a 1:13.4062s.
McLaughlin was almost two tenths clear of the field after most had set their initial lap times before van Gisbergen set a 1:12.9463s on his second flyer.
The latter went fastest to the second sector on his next lap, swiped the left-hand mirror fascia off the #97 ZB Commodore on exit of Turn 10, and ultimately clocked a 1:12.9909s.
Chaz Mostert (#25 Mobil 1 Appliances Online ZB Commodore) then jumped to the top with a 1:12.7840s, his first representative time after roading tyres at the start of the session.
The top three remained the same until many but reportedly not all drivers took green tyres for their final runs.
Van Gisbergen understeered over the edge of the race track and got loose at Turn 6, for a second time, on the lap before the 1:12.6860s which looked like it might be best for the session.
Pye, similarly, was briefly third before Courtney broke the beam right near the end.
That shuffled Mostert back to fifth with no improvement on his first run proper, ahead of Andre Heimgartner (#7 Ned Mustang), Anton De Pasquale (#99 Penrite ZB Commodore), Todd Hazelwood (#14 Black Duck ZB Commodore), McLaughlin, and Nick Percat (#8 R&J Batteries ZB Commodore).
David Reynolds effectively missed half a session due to engine misfire in the #9 Penrite ZB Commodore before setting a 1:13.0265s that left him 11th all told.
Cameron Waters, who set the pace this time last week with a 1:12.5033s, was 12th-fastest with a personal best 1:13.0980s in the #6 Monster Energy Mustang.
Fabian Coulthard (#12 Shell V-Power Mustang) ended up 20th on a 1:13.4204s and Rick Kelly propped up the timesheets with a 1:13.7516s after suffering a sticking throttle in the #15 Castrol Mustang.
Following a cloudy Practice 1, the second session for the full Virgin Australia Supercars Championship field starts at 11:20 local time/AEST.
Results: Practice 1
|1||44||Boost Mobile Racing||James Courtney||Ford Mustang GT||1:12.6292|
|2||97||Red Bull Holden Racing Team||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.6860||0:00.0568|
|3||2||Mobil 1 TM Middy’s Racing||Bryce Fullwood||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.6996||0:00.0704|
|4||20||DEWALT Racing||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.7248||0:00.0956|
|5||25||Mobil 1 Appliances Online||Chaz Mostert||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.7840||0:00.1548|
|6||7||NED Whisky Racing||Andre Heimgartner||Ford Mustang GT||1:12.8938||0:00.2646|
|7||99||Penrite Racing||Anton De Pasquale||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.9153||0:00.2861|
|8||14||Team Black Duck||Todd Hazelwood||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.9401||0:00.3109|
|9||17||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Scott McLaughlin||Ford Mustang GT||1:12.9798||0:00.3506|
|10||8||R&J Batteries||Nick Percat||Holden Commodore ZB||1:12.9822||0:00.3530|
|11||9||Penrite Racing||David Reynolds||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.0265||0:00.3973|
|12||6||Monster Energy Racing||Cameron Waters||Ford Mustang GT||1:13.0980||0:00.4688|
|13||55||Supercheap Auto Racing||Jack Le Brocq||Ford Mustang GT||1:13.1281||0:00.4989|
|14||3||Team CoolDrive||Macauley Jones||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.1642||0:00.5350|
|15||22||Team SYDNEY||Chris Pither||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.3345||0:00.7053|
|16||35||Yellow Cover Racing||Garry Jacobson||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.3410||0:00.7118|
|17||5||Truck Assist Racing||Lee Holdsworth||Ford Mustang GT||1:13.3667||0:00.7375|
|18||88||Red Bull Holden Racing Team||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.4062||0:00.7770|
|19||34||UNIT Racing||Jake Kostecki||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.4074||0:00.7782|
|20||12||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Fabian Coulthard||Ford Mustang GT||1:13.4204||0:00.7912|
|21||19||Local Legends Racing||Alex Davison||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.4342||0:00.8050|
|22||18||IRWIN Racing||Mark Winterbottom||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.5802||0:00.9510|
|23||4||SCT Motor Sports||Jack Smith||Holden Commodore ZB||1:13.6414||0:01.0122|
|24||15||Castrol Racing||Rick Kelly||Ford Mustang GT||1:13.7516||0:01.1224|