2015 V8 Supercars Championship | Coates Hire Sydney 500
Article and Images by Rhys Vandersyde
V8 Supercars | Coates Hire Sydney 500 Friday
The final round of the V8 Supercars Championship kicked off on the streets of Sydney Olympic Park. With 300 points up for grabs over the course of the weekends three races. Mark Winterbottom (Pepsi Max Crew) and Craig Lowndes (Red Bull Racing Australia) are the only two drivers in the running for the title with Winterbottom holding a 179 point lead over Lowndes.
To get you up to speed with the driver movements for this round, here is a quick rundown on the changes for Homebush.
Firstly, Jack Perkins will fill in for the injured Nick Percat at Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport.
Chris Pither has signed to drive for SuperBlack Racing in 2016 and he’ll also be replacing Andre Heimgartner for the final race of 2015 as well.
In order for Cameron Waters to focus on his Dunlop Series title, Pepsi Max Crew have enlisted the help of Steve Owen to fill in for Chaz Mostert in the No. 6 car. And finally, Erebus Motorsport has brought in Alex Davison to replace Ash Walsh to gain more information about the car and setup.
The first 30 minute practice session was a chance to get back up to speed with the Homebush street circuit. A couple of drivers found the walls early in the session as they explored the limits of the track. Championship leader Mark Winterbottom (Pepsi Max Crew) hit the wall at Turn 1 yet luckily his car was quickly repaired for the second session.
Shane Van Gisbergen (Team Darrell Lea) ended the session with the fastest time of 1:28.6455 for Holden. Scott Pye (DJR Team Penske) and David Reynold (Bottle-O Racing) represented Ford in second and third, half a second off the pace.
Big names continued to find the limits of the track in the second practice session, this time Jamie Whincup (Red Bull Racing Australia) found the wall at the first chicane although he was able to resume without issue.
Again Shane Van Gisbergen (Team Darrell Lea) proved to be fastest with a 1:27.8837, almost a second clear of Jason Bright (Team BOC) with the second fastest time. David Reynolds (Bottle-O Racing) again finished the session third fastest.
The third practice session had to be Red Flagged when Chris Pither (SuperBlack Racing) launched his car over the chicane, moving the tyre bundles and heavily damaging the front of his Ford Falcon.
The session later resumed allowing Shane Van Gisbergen to again set the fastest time, with a 1:27.7652. However Jason Bright (Team BOC) would be much closer to the Kiwi’s pace setting the second fastest time with a 1:27.8533. Jamie Whincup (Red Bull Racing Australia) finished the session third fastest.
V8 Supercars action continues tomorrow with qualifying before two 125 kilometre races.
Keep tuned into MyDrive for updates throughout the Coates Hire Sydney 500.
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For details on the V8 Supercars Championship, click > www.v8supercars.com.au
For Foxtel coverage details, click > www.foxtel.com.au
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