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PRESS RELEASE/Australian GT – The Bend/Shannons Nationals – Photo: AGT
Jaie Robson and David Reynolds ended the opening day at The Bend Motorsport Park fastest after a soggy 60-minute practice session.
The Aussie Driver Search Mercedes-AMG GT3 set a time of 3:33.724s to head the WM Waste Management entry of Max Twigg and Tony D’Alberto (Mercedes-AMG GT3) by little more than half a second.
The session started in the dry, but rain quickly closed in and doused the circuit without a lap set.
Conditions then settled in, the circuit remaining wet for the duration, adding a further element to the first official Australian GT running on the circuit.
The Robson/Reynolds pairing were among the sessions’ most prolific, banking 14 laps, as did Peter Hackett and Jake Fouracre (Eggleston Motorsport).
With conditions expected to improve for the remainder of the weekend, several opted to limit their running.
Jeremy Gray and Andrew Miedecke (JMG/Bilstein) recorded just two-timed laps, as too did Tony Walls and Warren Luff (Objective Racing).
Liam Talbot (Hot Wheels Ca Care Products) only completed an installation lap before handing the car to John Martin who chalked up seven timed efforts.
Having missed Thursday’s test day, Tony Quinn and Shane van Gisbergen (Mariani Beef Jerky) ended the day third despite their limited experience, 1.9-seconds off the pace of Robson/Reynolds.
Dylan O’Keeffe and Ash Samadi (Ah Apartments) ended proceedings fourth fastest, the tricky and constantly changing conditions, mixed with the long lap, seeing large time gaps between cars.
Scott Taylor had a spin mid-way through the session to draw a red flag after the Mercedes-AMG GT3 he’s sharing with Craig Baird found itself stuck in the slippery infield but still managed the fifth best time of the day.
Also in the ten were Jim Manolios and Dean Canto (Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate/Prielli) in eighth fastest and the Geoff Emery/Garth Tander (Valvoline) in tenth.
Leading the GT4 class was Justin McMillan and Glen Wood, setting the 14th fastest time overall to head their class by an impressive eight seconds.
Australian GT continues today with two back-to-back Qualifying sessions, beginning at 12:30 before the first hour of the opening CAMS Australian Endurance Championship race at 17:20.
Results: Australian GT Championship, The Bend, Practice
|1||Aussie Driver Search||J.Robson/D.Reynolds||Mercedes-AMG GT3||3:33.724||CH|
|2||WM Waste Management||M.Twigg/T.D’Alberto||Mercedes-AMG GT3||3:34.306||CH|
|3||Mariani Beef Jerky||T.Quinn/S.van Gisbergen||Mclaren 650S GT3||3:35.650||CH|
|4||Ah Apartments||A.Samadi/D.O’Keefe||Audi R8 LMS||3:36.070||CH|
|5||Scott Taylor Motorsport||S.Taylor/C.Baird||Mercedes-AMG GT3||3:37.347||CH|
|6||Walkinshaw GT3||L.Talbot/J.Martin||Porsche 911 GT3-R||3:38.207||CH|
|7||BMW Team SRM||S.Richards/M.Almond||BMW M6 GT3||3:39.060||CH|
|8||Haemokinesis / Trofeo Estate||J.Manolios/D.Canto||Lamborghini Huracan||3:39.083||CH|
|9||Eggleston Motorsport||P.Hackett/J.Fouracre||Mercedes-AMG GT3||3:40.954||CH|
|10||Valvoline||G.Emery/G.Tander||Audi R8 LMS||3:41.853||CH|
|11||The Bend Motor Sport Park||Y.Shahin/L.Youlden||Mercedes-AMG GT3||3:42.766||CH|
|12||Total Oil / Opti-Coat / Logite||F.Ross/D.Padayachee||McLaren 650S GT3||3:43.307||CH|
|13||Wall Racing||A.Deitz/C.McConville||Huracan GT3||3:45.977||CH|
|14||Interlloy / M Motorsport||J.McMillan/G.Wood||Reiter KTM X-Bow||3:49.397||GT4|
|15||Objective Racing||T.Walls/W.Luff||McLaren 650S GT3||3:50.729||CH|
|16||KFC/Ctech Laser/Moveitnet/B&B||T.Bates/D.Gaunt||Audi R8 LMS||3:51.404||CH|
|17||Hogs Breath Cafe / Griffith Co||M.Griffith/H.Jones||Ginetta G55 GT4||3:57.425||GT4|
|18||M Motorsport / Vantage Freight||D.Crampton/T.Harrison||Reiter KTM X-Bow||3:58.128||GT4|
|19||JMG / Bilstein||J.Gray/A.Miedecke||Aston Martin Vantage GT4||4:22.057||GT4|