The Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia field has completed its final preparations ahead of the series’ two longest single-driver races, with Alex Davison and Anthony Gilbertson finishing the eventful Friday practice sessions at Phillip Island quickest in their respective classes.
Davison was the best of the Pro ranked drivers ahead of his stablemate Dylan O’Keeffe, James Moffat and Dale Wood. The fastest three drivers from Friday posted their best times in the morning session, while Wood’s best lap came from the slower afternoon practice session, in which the former Supercars driver was the pacesetter.
After his impressive Friday form, Davison will now look to begin his Endurance Cup title defence in Saturday’s race one in style.
“I didn’t do a test day like many others had done, so it was good to arrive and be on the pace from the start of the day. With longer races this weekend, we focussed our efforts in the second session on a race set-up for a long run. I feel well prepared for tomorrow,” said Davison.
Jordan Love was the fifth best across Friday’s two sessions from Jaxon Evans, David Wall, Nick McBride, Peter Major and Michael Almond in tenth.
Gilbertson was the best of the TAG Heuer Pro-Am racers in the morning session, ultimately placing 11th outright for the day and ahead of Pro-Am rivals Max Twigg and Roger Lago. Having long-distance race experience in Carrera Cup’s feeder series, Porsche Michelin GT3 Cup Challenge Australia, Gilbertson feels well prepared for the two 25-lap races.
“I posted my best lap in the morning session when the track was a little bit faster and the sun wasn’t out. The car felt great straight out of the truck and it’s just as good at the end of today,” said Gilbertson.
“Having driven the longer races in GT3 Cup Challenge will really help me this weekend at Phillip Island. We’ve also done some longer runs in testing to find out how to conserve these rear tyres. This new car has more power so rear grip is everything, so if we can look after the tyres early in the race it will pay dividends towards the finish.”
While the morning session was uninterrupted, although delayed due to morning fog, the afternoon session was cut short after Dean Cook made heavy contact with the Hayshed tyre wall, handing the Ashley Seward Motorsport crew the large task of repairing the #22 TAG Heuer Pro-Am entry overnight.
Qualifying for the Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia championship will be held at 11:35am on Saturday before the series’ kicks off the first of six Endurance Cup races for the 2018 season.
Race Schedule (local time)
Saturday April 21, 2018
11:35am Qualifying (20 minutes)
2:15pm Race 1 (25 laps)
Sunday April 22, 2018
12:20pm Race 2 (25 laps)
Results: Combined Practice 1 & 2
1. #888 Alex Davison (Pro) 1:31.2627
2. #88 Dylan O’Keeffe (Pro) 1:31.4100 (0:00.1473)
3. #18 James Moffat (Pro) 1:31.6647 (0:00.4020)
4. #100 Dale Wood (Pro) 1:31.6766 (0:00.4139)
5. #777 Jordan Love (Pro) 1:31.8389 (0:00.5762)
6. #7 Jaxon Evans (Pro) 1:31.9121 (0:00.6494)
7. #1 David Wall (Pro) 1:32.0491 (0:00.7864)
8. #8 Nick McBride (Pro) 1:32.2582 (0:00.9955)
9. #14 Peter Major (Pro) 1:32.6520 (0:01.3893)
10. #77 Michael Almond (Pro) 1:32.6644 (0:01.4017)
11. #19 Anthony Gilbertson (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:32.8180 (0:01.5553)
12. #15 Josh Hunt (Pro) 1:32.9739 (0:01.7112)
13. #111 Cameron Hill (Pro) 1:32.9802 (0:01.7175)
14. #80 Max Twigg (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:33.0370 (0:01.7743)
15. #23 Roger Lago (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:33.0829 (0:01.8202)
16. #6 Tim Miles (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:33.3289 (0:02.0662)
17. #4 Stephen Grove (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:33.6262 (0:02.3635)
18. #12 Adam Garwood (Pro) 1:33.7285 (0:02.4658)
19. #13 Sam Shahin (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:33.8286 (0:02.5659)
20. #20 Adrian Flack (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:34.1323 (0:02.8696)
21. #808 John Steffensen (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:34.1376 (0:02.8749)
22. #22 Dean Cook (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:35.3172 (0:04.0545)
23. #35 Indiran Padayachee (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:36.0114 (0:04.7487)
24. #9 Marc Cini (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:37.2604 (0:05.9977)
25. #131 Graham Williams (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:37.4585 (0:06.1958)
26. #5 Greg Taylor (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:38.6974 (0:07.4347)