VIDEO | V8 Supercars Hit Adelaide for 2015 Clipsal 500

2015 V8 Supercars Championship | Clipsal 500 (Friday Practice)

Article and Images | Rhys Vandersyde

The V8 Supercar 2015 season kicks off in ernest this weekend with Round 1 of the championship taking place on the streets of Adelaide for the Clipsal 500. Popular with the fans, Adelaide really gets behind the Clipsal 500, with an estimated crowd of 80,000 set to flock to the track for Sunday’s on track action.

Friday’s V8 Supercar action was a chance for all the teams to debut their new sponsors and liveries for 2015 with three practice sessions before qualifying for races 1 and 2 later in the afternoon.

It was an ideal opportunity for series rookies Andre Heimgartner (Super Black Racing) and Ashley Walsh (Erebus Motorsport) to get to grips with the Adelaide street circuit, while Marcus Ambrose (DJR Team Penske) and Tim Blanchard (Team Cooldrive) got reacquainted on their return the championship.

With the other drivers getting up to speed, 2014 Champion, Jamie Whincup (Red Bull Racing Australia), showed he was still the man to beat setting some impressive lap times in practice. Lee Holdsworth was also out to impress who’s move to Walkinshaw Racing in the off season seemed to pay dividends, showing a solid pace with the third fastest time in practice.

Qualifying Race 1

With only 10 minutes in each of the two qualifying sessions, it would be a short sharp shoot out to determine the positions for Saturday’s races. The first qualifying session was trouble free, although Blanchard elected to sit out the session to save tyres which pushed him to the rear of the grid.

Whincup continued where he left off in 2014, on pole and leading from the front with a stunning lap time of 1:20.09. The kiwi contingent fought it out for 2nd and 3rd with Fabian Coulthard (Freightliner Racing) narrowly beating Scott McLaughlin (Volvo/Wilson Security Racing).

Fastest of the Ford’s was Chaz Mostert (Pepsi Max Crew) in 4th with Michael Caruso the fastest of the Nissan Motorsport Altima in 6th. Will Davison (Erebus Motorsport) was the best of the Mercedes back in 18th place.

Images by Rhys Vandersyde

Qualifying Race 2

The back to back qualifying sessions didn’t allow teams much time to make adjustments to their cars, so it would be down to the drivers to improve their pace for a better result in the second qualifying session.

There was no surprise that Jamie Whincup was once again on top of the time sheets at the end of the second session with a 1:20.03. McLaughlin improved to second, while Holden Racing Team’s James Courtney was close behind in third.

David Reynolds (Bottle-O Racing) would be the fastest of the Ford’s in 6th while Caruso was again the best preforming Nissan in 12th. Ashley Walsh (Erebus Motorsport) outperformed his much more experienced teammate to be the fastest of the Mercedes in 15th.

With the grid for both races now set, the teams have one more practice session tomorrow. Action will then continue on Sunday with qualifying and the 3rd and final race of the weekend.

Keep tuned into MyDrive for updates across the weekend

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