Lee Holdsworth quickest in P2, McLaughlin has engine drama

Lee Holdsworth
Lee Holdsworth

AUCKLAND – Lee Holdsworth has edged closer to his first podium finish in 1987 days, after clocking the fastest ever lap at Pukekohe Park Raceway in today's second practice session for the ITM Auckland SuperSprint.

The Bottle-O Mustang driver, who last stood on the podium as a winner at Winton in April 2014, was quickest in drying conditions this afternoon ahead of Auckland-born Red Bull Holden Ace Shane van Gisbergen and Milwaukee Racing Mustang's Will Davison.

Holdsworth's record-breaking effort in P2 topped a clean sweep for Tickford Racing drivers, with Davison the quickest in P1 earlier today.

“It was lit, the car is good. We did some changes there and it came out alive," Holdsworth said.

"We came here with a pretty nice base car so we have just been searching for that little bit extra to get us up into the top three. I feel like we have really found something now, we will wait and see now.

“This track is super quick at the moment and it is only going to get faster and faster. I am stoked. I could hope for a better start to the weekend, now we just have to follow it through."

Holdsworth quickest in Auckland practice
Holdsworth quickest in Auckland practice

Friday the 13th proved unlucky for defending Virgin Australia Supercars Champion Scott McLaughlin though, with his Shell V-Power Mustang starter motor not working in the opening stages of P2.

His team rallied in his 100th career round start and had the runaway series leader on track late, where he managed to clock the 7th quickest lap of the session.

“We didn’t get as many laps in as we wanted but it was alright. At least we got back out, the boys were all over it. But I was holding on, it’s hard work around here," the runaway Championship leader said.

Behind the top three this afternoon the Holden's of David Reynolds, Nick Percat and Jamie Whincup were four, five six. In front of McLaughlin, Anton De Pasquale, Fabian Coulthard and Scott Pye.

McLaughlin will put this afternoon's engine drama behind him for qualifying tomorrow as he chases his 15th pole position of 2019 and a potentially record breaking 17th race win of the year.

Australian drivers still hold the edge over the locals on race wins at Pukekohe, claiming 25 of the 40 Supercars races held at the venue.

McLaughlin and van Gisbergen won the two races held last year, the first time New Zealand drivers have swept a Pukekohe weekend since Greg Murphy won all three races in 2005.

There will be one final practice session tomorrow morning, before ARMOR ALL Qualifying begins at 1:55pm and the opening race of the weekend – a 200km 70-lap SuperSprint begins at 4:10pm local time.

Results Practice 2

POS # DRIVER TEAM BEST LAP GAP LAPS
1 5 Holdsworth The Bottle-O Racing Team 1:01.628 +0.000 15
2 97 Van Gisbergen Red Bull Holden Racing Team 1:01.776 +0.148 18
3 23 Davison Milwaukee Racing 1:01.792 +0.164 13
4 9 Reynolds Penrite Racing 1:01.804 +0.176 14
5 8 Percat NZ Safety Blackwoods Racing 1:01.806 +0.178 17
6 88 Whincup Red Bull Holden Racing Team 1:01.821 +0.193 13
7 17 McLaughlin Shell V-Power Racing Team 1:01.929 +0.301 7
8 99 A. de Pasquale Penrite Racing 1:02.008 +0.380 16
9 12 Coulthard Shell V-Power Racing Team 1:02.037 +0.409 13
10 2 S. Pye Mobil 1 Racing 1:02.071 +0.443 13
11 14 Slade Machinery House Racing 1:02.146 +0.518 14
12 55 Mostert Supercheap Auto Racing 1:02.177 +0.549 15
13 6 C. Waters Monster Energy Racing Team 1:02.333 +0.705 12
14 22 Courtney Mobil 1 Racing 1:02.367 +0.739 14
15 33 R. Stanaway Boost Mobile Racing 1:02.436 +0.808 15
16 7 Heimgartner Plus Fitness Racing 1:02.514 +0.886 18
17 35 T. Hazelwood Bigmate Racing 1:02.517 +0.889 14
18 18 Winterbottom Irwin Racing 1:02.519 +0.890 16
19 15 R. Kelly Castrol Racing 1:02.589 +0.961 13
20 34 J. Golding Boost Mobile Racing 1:02.589 +0.961 13
21 3 G. Jacobson RABBLE.club Racing 1:02.608 +0.980 17
22 78 S. De Silvestro Team Harvey Norman 1:02.734 +1.106 15
23 21 M. Jones Team CoolDrive 1:02.761 +1.133 17
24 19 J. Le Brocq Truck Assist TEKNO Racing 1:03.369 +1.741 16

Practice 1 Results

POS # DRIVER TEAM BEST LAP GAP LAPS
1 23 Davison Milwaukee Racing 1:02.445 +0.000 6
2 17 McLaughlin Shell V-Power Racing Team 1:02.519 +0.074 15
3 97 Van Gisbergen Red Bull Holden Racing Team 1:02.655 +0.210 17
4 9 Reynolds Penrite Racing 1:02.726 +0.281 7
5 2 S. Pye Mobil 1 Racing 1:02.737 +0.292 12
6 12 Coulthard Shell V-Power Racing Team 1:02.801 +0.355 9
7 5 Holdsworth The Bottle-O Racing Team 1:02.997 +0.552 9
8 18 Winterbottom Irwin Racing 1:03.020 +0.575 8
9 3 G. Jacobson RABBLE.club Racing 1:03.547 +1.102 18
10 78 S. De Silvestro Team Harvey Norman 1:03.567 +1.122 8
11 34 J. Golding Boost Mobile Racing 1:03.571 +1.126 9
12 22 Courtney Mobil 1 Racing 1:03.663 +1.218 8
13 7 Heimgartner Plus Fitness Racing 1:03.837 +1.391 8
14 33 R. Stanaway Boost Mobile Racing 1:03.882 +1.437 8
15 19 J. Le Brocq Truck Assist TEKNO Racing 1:04.277 +1.832 9
16 21 M. Jones Team CoolDrive 1:04.641 +2.196 9
17 88 Whincup Red Bull Holden Racing Team 1:05.030 +2.585 14
18 35 T. Hazelwood Bigmate Racing 1:05.557 +3.111 7
19 6 C. Waters Monster Energy Racing Team 1:08.410 +5.964 6
20 55 Mostert Supercheap Auto Racing 3:07.862 +2:05.417 6
21 15 R. Kelly Castrol Racing 5:29.552 +4:27.107 8
22 14 Slade Machinery House Racing 11:40.269 +10:37.823 4
23 99 A. de Pasquale Penrite Racing +0.000 2
24 8 Percat NZ Safety Blackwoods Racing +0.000 2

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