Pye floats to the top
- By Kassie Gadeke
- Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
Fresh from his podium finish in New Zealand, Scott Pye has topped the first practice session at a damp Phillip Island with a 1min32.0550 lap.
Changing conditions throughout the hour-long session meant the V8 Supercars rolled out of pit lane in the rain, but with under 20 minutes remaining the switch to slick tyres began.
Pye finished just 0.09sec ahead of Todd Kelly - though the two had a close call on the final lap after Kelly rejoined the track in the tricky conditions.
"I was hoping he'd be a little bit further back so when I got to turn two I could go around him," Pye told FOX SPORTS.
"Unfortunately though when you re-join on a wet track he's going to come arrowing across so I sort of took the precautionary side and decided to give him room and run off the track."
Pye was pleased with his Ford Falcon FG X and the opportunity to steer it in the wet.
"The car was good. In the wet conditions we haven't done much running, I think Bathurst was the only time really this year we've done it.
"We experimented a lot with pressures and some setup stuff and felt like just before we went to the slicks we were fairly strong.
"Then the guys put the car back to a dry setup ran what we came here with, rolled out of the truck competitive again which is great."
Team BOC's Jason Bright was third quickest in the session, but ended up stranded on track at the end of the run out of fuel.
Championship leader Mark Winterbottom followed in fifth with David Reynolds right behind.
Injured Nick Percat jumped to the top of the times at one stage in the session and said his foot felt alright after the run. "Overall I'm fit and healthy, that's the main thing, and I can live to fight another day," he said.
He finished eighth in the Repair Management Australia Racing Commodore.
Championship chaser Craig Lowndes was 13th in the session.