Townsville’s Reid Park street circuit roared into life on Friday as Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes hit the track in three free practice sessions ahead of an important V8 Supercars round for the team.
Craig finished the day in 10th while Jamie had to settle for 15th, as both Red Bull Racing Australia drivers battled to find the pace needed to attack the kerbs and Chaz Mostert who ended the final session quickest.
“We’re making progress but we still need to find a little more pace yet,” said Lowndesy after stepping out of his No. 888.
“The car is getting nicer every outing which is good. We know we’ve got longer races over the course of the weekend so we’re looking for longer endurance running than sprint running.
“We haven’t got soft tyres to practice on so we’ve got to rely on our knowledge from the past. If we can get the car to work on the hard tyre it should transfer across to the soft.
“We’ll sit down tonight and go through some data and have a good think about what we’ve done today. We’ll see what the good and bad has been and make our plans for tomorrow.”
Searching for the speed he needs to attack the field, Jamie said he’ll be looking to jump straight on to the front foot tomorrow as he looks to close the gap on the field after slipping to eighth in the championship.
“We worked pretty hard coming in to Townsville to get a good balance and we were well on track,” J Dub said following his last run.
“There was so much positive out of the final run and I was amped to get the new tyres on at the end to see what we could do.
“Unfortunately when we did it was a bit of an anti-climax and we just didn’t bump up the timesheet as much as we would have hoped. Tomorrow we just have to get speed out of the car.
“If the car is quick we can do things and we can be aggressive with the strategy and I can race hard. At the moment we’re on the back foot so we want to get on the attack and that all comes from good car speed.
“We’re working seriously hard, but unfortunately the times didn’t show it today. We’ll get there eventually.”
Saturday’s action is jammed packed with practice four starting at 09:10 local time followed by qualifying and the first of two 70 lap races. Check out the TV schedule here.