BATHURST BATTLE BEGINS WITH BOWE FASTEST
THE CHASE to beat Bowe at Bathurst has begun as Round 6 of the ENZED Touring Car Masters got underway today at Mount Panorama Bathurst.
The double Bathurst 1000 winner smashed the existing TCM practice record in practice two on a fine Thursday his best of 2m20.51s a full 1.1 seconds under the existing class practice record set in qualifying last year Ã¢â‚¬â€œ by Glenn Seton.
Bowe headed Chevrolet Camaro-driving rival Andrew Miedecke Ford Falcon XB pilot Kim Jane and Charger star Greg Crick in the combined practice times across two 20-minute sessions today.
Ahead of qualifying the top-four is filled with four different models; Mustang Camaro Falcon and Charger.
Keith Kassulke (5th) Andrew Fisher Jim Richards Bill Pye Jason Gomersall and Paul Freestone completed the top-10 in a competitive day with third through 10th covered by just two seconds Ã¢â‚¬â€œ a fair contrast to the 1.9s gap Bowe established at the pointy end of the field in practice.
Both sessions were interrupted with red flag stoppages today the first halted two minutes from its conclusion when Mark King spun into the gravel at the Chase after a tyre delaminated on Conrod straight.
King was able to control the car Ã¢â‚¬â€œ despite the blowout happening at more than 260km/hr Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and escape without damage ending the day 11th in the King Springs / Whiteline transport Camaro.
The second session was called short when Will Vining backed his Mustang into the fence at Skyline Ã¢â‚¬â€œ though he still ended the day quickest of the Pro Sports contenders.
The Savy Motorsport crew expect the Mustang to be back on track tomorrow for qualifying.
Returning to the track this weekend is TCM fan favourite Brad Tilley who after a lengthy repair process has returned his iconic Falcon GTHO to the circuit this weekend.
Severely damaged in a crash at the Clipsal 500 in March Tilley and his team have scrambled to raise the funds to repair the Falcon but have made a triumphant return this weekend.
Tilley ended practice in 13th position but says thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s more to come from the Green Machine.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s been a massive process to get it back on track and IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m absolutely stuffedÃ¢â‚¬Â he said following the second practice session.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been getting to the workshop at 5 and working until 8 in the morning when IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d start work. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d then pick up at 5pm and work through until I couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t stand up any more!
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t know why people just love the car. I remember winning that race here two years ago and being able to hear the crowd over the car at the end. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve worked so hard to get it back for this weekend.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a labour of love for us and weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re really thrilled to have got it back on track here. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going to be pretty good Ã¢â‚¬â€œ we changed some things in the front end so itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s different to drive.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“It has only driven from the shed onto the truck before today Ã¢â‚¬â€œ so this is a big day for us. It ran well and it will get better.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The ENZED Touring Car Masters will return to the circuit tomorrow for qualifying and the first of three races that make up the TCM Mountain Masters presented by ENZED Rare Spares and Shannons.
COMBINED PRACTICE TIMES Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Round 6 Mount Panorama.
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________Pos Car Competitor/Team Driver Vehicle Cap CL Fastest...Lap Gap1 18 Dunlop Super Dealers/Wilson Se John Bowe (VIC) Mustang Trans Am 5600c P2 2:20.5137R2 95 Whiteline Transport Racing / L Andrew Miedecke (NSW) Camaro SS 5800c P2 2:22.4278 0:01.91413 48 Sydneys Cheapest Cars Kim Jane (VIC) Falcon XB Coupe 5800c P2 2:23.6787 0:03.16504 75 Mopar Performance Greg Crick (TAS) Charger E55 5570c P2 2:24.4248 0:03.91115 52 Outbound Racing / wheels.com.p Keith Kassulke (QLD) Falcon XB Coupe 5800c P1 2:24.6217 0:04.10806 9 Synergy Race Engines Andrew Fisher (NSW) Falcon XY GTHO 5800c P2 2:24.8173 0:04.30367 1 Shannons Insurance Jim Richards (VIC) Falcon Sprint 4700c P2 2:25.0130 0:04.49938 7 calga.biz Bill Pye (NSW) Camaro 5800c P2 2:25.3436 0:04.82999 35 iseek Racing Jason Gomersall (QLD) Torana SL/R 5000 5047c P2 2:25.3502 0:04.836510 25 Freestones Transport/Freestone Paul Freestone (VIC) Camaro SS 5800c P2 2:25.7910 0:05.277311 85 Whiteline Transport Racing / K Mark King (QLD) Camaro RS 5800c P2 2:26.1477 0:05.634012 88 TIFS - Warehousing & Distribut Tony Karanfilovski (NSW) Mustang Trans Am 5800c P2 2:26.5856 0:06.071913 28 Brad Tilley (NSW) Falcon XY GT 5800c P2 2:27.2274 0:06.713714 56 Autolite Spark Plugs Brett Youlden (VIC) HQ Monaro 5800c P1 2:27.2327 0:06.719015 11 Lion Mill Solutions Adam Bressington (NSW) Falcon XA GT 5768c P2 2:29.0706 0:08.556916 98 Thunder Road Racing Australia William Vining (NSW) Mustang Coupe 5000c P2 2:29.2811 0:08.767417 3 Hercules Engines Cameron Mason (NSW) Mustang Fastback 5000c P2 2:29.5815 0:09.067818 99 Outbound Racing / Treloar Rose Les Walmsley (VIC) HQ Monaro 5810c P2 2:29.6751 0:09.161419 50 Flo-gineering Carey McMahon (VIC) Torana SL/R 5000 5000c P2 2:30.1104 0:09.596720 6 Chris Stillwell Racing Sven Burchartz (VIC) Mustang Trans Am 5000c P2 2:30.2169 0:09.703221 46 THD Motorsport Leo Tobin (VIC) Boss Mustang 5000c P2 2:30.2848 0:09.771122 60 Tilleys Racing Equipment Cameron Tilley (NSW) HQ Monaro 5800c P2 2:30.4916 0:09.977923 74 Lyndways Builders Wayne Mercer (VIC) Falcon XY GTHO 5800c P2 2:31.0837 0:10.570024 10 Sunliner RV Tony Hunter (VIC) Monza 2+2 5000c P1 2:32.6899 0:12.176225 33 SportsMed Greg Keene (SA) 911 RS 3600c P2 2:32.7439 0:12.230226 4 Skye Sands Rusty French (VIC) 911 RS 3600c P2 2:38.7299 0:18.216227 43 Treloar Roses / Mick Wilson Pl Mick Wilson (VIC) Charger RT 4390c P1 2:39.1154 0:18.601728 5 Northern BM P/L Phillip Showers (VIC) Escort RS 1600 2000c P2 2:45.1932 0:24.679529 72 BMR Industries Bruce McLeod (NT) Falcon XA Superbird 5000c P2 2:45.2334 0:24.7197