Alex Davison has returned to the Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia championship with immediate impact at the opening day of the Clipsal 500, joining reigning champion Craig Baird at the head of the field.
In Davison’s return to the category, the McElrea Racing driver finished just 0.16 seconds behind the fastest time of Baird at the conclusion of Thursday’s two practice sessions.
Behind the leading duo in the times were Daniel Gaunt, Steven Richards, Nick Foster, Tom Tweedie and Matt Kingsley, while James Koundouris held the eighth quickest time, which was the best lap of the Elite Class drivers.
Baird posted his fastest time on his final lap of the day, pipping Davison at the top of the timesheets. However, Davison expects to become quicker throughout the weekend as he gains more experience in the Porsche.
“In order to improve I had to continue to adapt to the car today. I held a steady pace in the first session to get my technique right and I made a big improvement in the second session. Baird just pipped me on the final lap but there’s still some time to gain,” said Davison.
“These cars are obviously a lot different to the V8 Supercar and also quite a big difference to the Porsches I used to race in Carrera Cup. I’m otherwise enjoying it and am looking forward to the competitive part of the weekend.”
Meanwhile, Baird was pleased with gaining the fastest lap time in both practice sessions.
“We haven’t raced here since 2008 and it took a while to get my eye back in, but I’m happy with the fastest time in both sessions and I’m looking forward to the weekend,” said Baird.
Elite Class pace-setter Koundouris was delighted with his pace having not driven the car since the 2011 season finale in Sydney.
“I like the Adelaide circuit and I always seem to go alright here,” said Koundouris.
“The layout of the circuit is great, Turn 8 is a really hairy corner and it always makes for good racing.”
Porsche City Index Carrera Cup Australia will hold qualifying and its opening race of the season on Friday March 02.
Friday March 02
12:55pm – 1:15pm Qualifying (20 minutes)
7:45pm – 8:15pm Race 1 (28 minutes + 1 lap)
Saturday March 03
9:40am – 10:00am Race 2 (11 laps)
Sunday March 04
1:20pm – 1:40pm Race 3 (11 laps)
Broadcast schedule – Carrera Cup Race 3 (live)
Date: Sunday March 04
Time: 1:15pm (Adelaide), 1:45pm (Melbourne, Sydney), 12:45pm (Brisbane) and 10:45am (Perth)
Times subject to change – please check local guides.