Official Supercars pre-season testing has reached the halfway point today with all three Kiwis putting in some good laps and times.
Andre Heimgartner is the one who has set the pace in the morning session, a blistering 1min 29.8268sec enough to see him eclipse second fastest Will Brown by a massive 1.3137 seconds.
Jack Smith rounds out the top three only two one hundredths off Brown’s time.
Matt Payne is the second fastest Kiwi and top rookie in the field, running as high as third before dropping down to eighth as conditions improved.
Defending champion Shane van Gisbergen sits 23rd out of the 25 runners after putting in 47 laps. He did, however, share his drive with Kiwi co-driver Richie Stanaway.
A misty, damp night in Sydney meant wet tyres were the order of the morning until about one hour was left in the session. A drying track saw teams able to switch to slicks for the final hour of the morning session which resulted in the top times tumbling.
Van Gisbergen set the pace early on, holding top spot for the majority of early proceedings before track improvements were felt.
Heimgartner was quick to lay a bench mark to lead heading into the final 90 minutes before a host of drivers went on to better his time.
That includes Payne who ran inside the top three with just over 30 minutes to go but, as expected, the improving track saw drivers continue to trade places.
With all 25 cars now having set a time it was Brown who sat top entering the final 15 minutes, only to be topped by an incredible Heimgartner flyer in the dying stages.
Whilst pre-season testing in wet conditions may not give a fair indication of true pace, it appears a number of contenders are emerging from the pack.
The afternoon session begins at 3pm and will help create a better picture of pace as the track continues to dry. Live timings can be followed on the Supercars website.
Supercars pre-season testing morning session
|Place||Driver||Gap to leader|
|15th||Anton de Pasquale||+2.3326|
|16th||Jack Le Broq||+2.4767|
|23rd||Shane van Gisbergen||+3.8839|