McLean fastest in Super2 Practice 1 at wet SMP

Matt McLean. Picture: Ross Gibb

Matt McLean has set the pace in Practice 1 for Round 1 of the Dunlop Super2 Series at a wet Sydney Motorsport Park.

The Eggleston Motorsport driver clocked a 1:40.7845s just before the second of two red flags in the 50-minute session, which saw intermittent showers throughout.

McLean (#54 VF Commodore) finished 0.1021s clear of Image Racing’s Jaylyn Robotham, another second-year Super2 driver, with Triple Eight Race Engineering rookie Cameron Hill ending up 0.9971s off the pace in third.

The first 10 minutes of the session were reserved for the rookies, who went out with light rain falling over Eastern Creek and the circuit already damp.

Grove Racing’s Matt Payne (#10 Nissan Altima), Hill (#111 VF Commodore), and MW Motorsport’s Thomas Maxwell (#3 Nissan Altima) all had spells on top in those initial 10 minutes.

Image Racing rookie Jay Hanson (#49 VF Commodore) moved the marker to a 1:42.2242s just past the 15-minute mark, before team-mate Robotham (#999 VF Commodore) clocked a 1:41.6823s and 1:40.8866s on consecutive laps.

Despite the sun poking through the clouds and the track drying out, wets were still the preferred option, as Tickford Racing’s Zak Best (#78 FGX Falcon) and MWM’s Angelo Mouzouris (#6 Nissan Altima) demonstrated when they had offs while running on slicks.

The session was then red flagged in the 21st minute when Super3 competitor Paul Boschert (#25 Paul Boschert VE Commodore) spun at the Turn 8 hairpin and became bogged on the inside of the corner.

Almost as soon as the session went green again, the showers returned, prompting anyone who had changed to slicks during the stoppage to switch back.

The rain only temporarily halted the advance in times, however, with the timing screen soon lighting up again with a flurry of personal best and even fastest sectors.

McLean, who had been second-quickest since just before the first red flag, took over the ascendancy with a 1:40.7845s with just over 10 minutes to go.

Moments later, the session was interrupted again when Garry Hills (#76 Garry Hills VE Commodore) spun off the road at Moffat Corner (Turn 1) and slid into the tyre barriers via an outfield left saturated from rain during the week.

Despite some opting for slicks for what was a final three minutes or so of track activity, there were no changes to the pointy end of the order.

McLean thus held onto top spot, from Robotham on the earlier 1:40.8866s, Hill on a 1:41.7816s which he got in just prior to the second red flag, and Payne on a 1:42.1598s.

Hanson rounded up the top five, from Matt Stone Racing’s Aaron Seton (#30 VF Commodore), Cameron Crick (#38 Eggleston VF Commodore), Declan Fraser (#777 Triple Eight VF Commodore), Best, and Mouzouris.

Eggleston’s Kai Allen was best of the Super3 contingent on his debut in the category, clocking a personal best 1:43.2634s in the #26 VE Commodore which left him 14th outright.

Tyler Everingham (#27 MWM Nissan Altima) missed the session after an overnight hospital stay but is on his way to Sydney and set to drive later this weekend.

Practice 2, a 40-minute session, starts this afternoon at 16:40 local time/AEDT.

Results: Practice 1

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver Car Cls Fastest lap Split
1 54 Eggleston Motorsport Matthew McLean Holden Commodore VF S2 1:40.7845  
2 999 Erebus Academy / Image Racing Jaylyn Robotham Holden Commodore VF S2 1:40.8866 0:00.1021
3 111 Triple Eight Race Engineering Cameron Hill Holden Commodore VF S2 1:41.7816 0:00.9971
4 10 Grove Racing Matthew Payne Nissan Altima S2 1:42.1598 0:01.3753
5 49 Image Racing Jay Hanson Holden Commodore VF S2 1:42.2242 0:01.4397
6 30 Sherrin Rentals Aaron Seton Holden Commodore VF S2 1:42.3450 0:01.5605
7 38 Eggleston Motorsport Cameron Crick Holden Commodore VF S2 1:42.3898 0:01.6053
8 777 Triple Eight Race Engineering Declan Fraser Holden Commodore VF S2 1:42.4134 0:01.6289
9 78 Best Leisure Industries Zak Best Ford Falcon FG/X S2 1:42.6397 0:01.8552
10 6 MWM Angelo Mouzouris Nissan Altima S2 1:42.6921 0:01.9076
11 3 MWM Thomas Maxwell Nissan Altima S2 1:43.0340 0:02.2495
12 58 EFS Ryal Harris Holden Commodore VF S2 1:43.1501 0:02.3656
13 18 Cavalier Homes Matthew Chahda Ford Falcon FG/X S2 1:43.1875 0:02.4030
14 26 Eggleston Motorsport Kai Allen Holden Commodore VE CH 1:43.2634 0:02.4789
15 7 Mocomm Motorsport Comms Jim Pollicina Holden Commodore VE SC3 1:43.3250 0:02.5405
16 5 Anderson Motorsport Brad Vaughan Ford Falcon FG CH 1:43.3600 0:02.5755
17 8 Steeline Racing Elly Morrow Holden Commodore VF S2 1:43.7290 0:02.9445
18 11 Brema Group Racing Zane Morse Holden Commodore VF S2 1:44.7260 0:03.9415
19 39 Vectra Corp Chris Smerdon Ford Falcon FG SC3 1:45.3328 0:04.5483
20 76 Valmont Coatings Garry Hill Holden Commodore VE2 SC3 1:45.9813 0:05.1968
21 35 Unit Racing Jason Gomersall Ford Falcon FG SC3 1:46.6737 0:05.8892
22 67 Flash Bush Motorsports Nash Morris Ford Falcon FG/X S2 1:46.6865 0:05.9020
23 219 Masterton Motorsport James Masterton Holden Commodore VE SC3 1:47.5092 0:06.7247
24 23 RHM / Nulon Ray Hislop Ford Falcon BA SC3 1:48.1725 0:07.3880
25 25 Weldcraft Motorsport Paul Boschert Holden Commodore VE SC3 1:48.5954 0:07.8109
26 77 Mr HDT Race Cars Blake Fardell Holden Commodore VE2 CH 1:48.7252 0:07.9407
27 2 Page Bros Jayco Steven Page Holden Commodore VE2 SC3 1:49.8007 0:09.0162
28 4 Crusher Parts International Tony Auddino Ford Falcon BF SC3 1:50.3603 0:09.5758
29 68 Turbo Brisbane Shane Beikoff Ford Falcon AU HC 1:56.3459 0:15.5614
30 46 Turbo Brisbane Jarred Danaher Ford Falcon FG SC3    

Classes: S2 Super2, CH Super3 Championship, SC3 Super3 Cup, HC Super3 Heritage Class

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