PRODRIVE RACING – WINTON SUPERSPRINT FRIDAY WRAP
Prodrive Racing (Australia)'s Cameron Waters has finished Friday's practice sessions third overall after momentarily holding the practice lap record at the Winton Supersprint. As predicted, the new Winton surface played a large part in running with times expected to fall further on Saturday. Dirt on the track at turn eight interrupted Mark Winterbottom's green tyre run late in the second session but managed a eighth place finish despite the debris. Chaz Mostert's day finished with 20 minutes still on the clock in the final outing, with a reported misfire the cause. Mostert was pleased with the progress of the #55 Supercar prior to his session being cut short, saying the car is 75% of the way there ahead of tomorrow morning's practice. Chris Pither has continued his run of good form after the Perth SuperSprint, finishing as the fastest Ford in the day's final practice. Practice laps have been beneficial for Pither who is feeling comfortable in the Super Black Ford.
Co-drivers opened running for the Supercars category at the Winton SuperSrint earlier in the day, with Supercheap Auto racer Steve Owen setting the fastest time in the #55 Ford, while car #6 co-driver Jack Le Brocq followed in p2 after a last-lap dash. Dean Canto ran on the hard tyre for most of the 30 minute session, switching to the soft compound in the closing stages to finish fourth. Richie Stanaway enjoyed a strong start to Supercars running, finishing 13th in the opening session while also setting a few laps in the main practice sessions.
Mark Winterbottom - #1 The Bottle-O PRA Ford: 12th – 1m19.73s
"We didn't quite make the gains that we wanted to today. We didn't really finish where we wanted to at the end of the day and the debris at turn eight didn't help with that either. If we had of gotten around that I think we would have been stronger but that's just how it is. We know where we need to be it's just about getting there now. We'll look at the data and hopefully roll out tomorrow with a better car."
Cameron Waters - #6 Monster Energy PRA Ford: 3rd – 1m19.39s
"We were quick in practice one. We put the green tyres on and the car was actually really nice. We came out in practice two and tried a few things and didn't really get a lap together. There was so much stuff out at turn eight and just couldn't really get it together. I learnt quite a lot today and we'll probably reset the car back to practice one and try and do that again tomorrow."
Chaz Mostert - #55 Supercheap Auto PRA Ford: 18th – 1m19.89s
"Pretty tough day. Obviously coming to a track that has a brand new grip level and stuff like that it really tested us drivers and the engineers today. I think in practice two we really made great inroads with the car and getting the car to 75% of the way there but we really needed that last quarter of the session there to get that 25% where I think we needed it. It was really good to get a direction and feel change in the car and at the end we just had a little engine misfire and it put us a bit out. I don't exactly know what happened with the car but the guys will fix it up. I'm really happy with the direction we're going in which is good for practice tomorrow."
Chris Pither - #111 Super Black PRA Ford: 11th – 1m19.72s
"It's great to roll out again and finish in the top ten in that last session. I really wanted to continue on from Perth and we've rolled out with a really good car again which is fantastic. To have the guys putting a great car together for me back at the workshop makes things better here and it definitely shows. I'm feeling good in the car now and getting more confident every time I'm out on the track so hopefully I can continue on with that tomorrow and we can get a good lap together for qualifying."
Tim Edwards – Team Principal:
"As we thought it would the new surface played a part in the sessions today and we saw what we expected which was a new practice lap record. I wouldn't be surprised if that changes again tomorrow. There are a few things to look at after practice today but realistically we're not too far off where we want to be. It's good to see that Chaz is happy in the car and on the soft tyre and Chris as well and Cam had a great run in that first session. Frosty isn't too far off the pace either so we'll look to improve further tomorrow."
DRIVER CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS
1) Craig Lowndes – Triple Eight: 894
2) Jamie Whincup – Triple Eight: 852
3) Scott McLaughlin – Garry Rogers Motorsport: 846
4) Mark Winterbottom – The Bottle-O Racing Team: 816
12) Chaz Mostert – Supercheap Auto Racing: 563
20) Cameron Waters – Monster Energy Racing: 460
24) Chris Pither– Super Black Racing: 313
1) Triple Eight: 1655
2) HRT: 1402
3) Garry Rogers: 1317
4) Prodrive Racing (Australia): 1276