Best dominates first Dunlop Series practice

Dunlop Series
05 Oct
Super2 points leader banging down the door on Dunlop Series lap record at Mount Panorama
2 mins by James Pavey
  • Best straight into the 2:05s in Practice 1 on Thursday

  • Super2 points leader just over 0.1s off the Super2 Bathurst lap record

  • Masterton crash triggers red flag 10 minutes into session

Super2 points leader Zak Best has dominated opening Dunlop Series practice at Mount Panorama, with the Anderson Motorsport driver over a second clear of the field.

Best, who carried a 33-point lead over Eggleston Motorsport driver Kai Allen to Bathurst, clocked a series of 2:05s laps in cold conditions on Thursday morning.

The Victorian was the only driver to clock a time in the 2:05s barrier, with Erebus Motorsport veteran Jack Perkins second, albeit 1.1608s down.

Best’s 2:05.5180s was just down on the Super2 practice/qualifying lap record, a 2:05.3898s, set by Jack Le Brocq in 2017.

Notably, Best's time smashed the benchmark of the corresponding session from 2022, a 2:09.5678s set by Cameron Hill.

Ryan Wood, Aaron Love and Allen rounded out the top five, with Brad Vaughan sixth ahead of Zane Morse, Jay Hanson, Zach Bates and Cooper Murray.


Ryan Gilroy was the highest placed Super3 driver in 17th overall with a 2:08.6228s, just ahead of fellow Altima driver Cameron McLeod.

The session was suspended shortly after cars rolled out of pit lane, with James Masteron crashing his Super3 Mustang at Forrest's Elbow. Replays showed Masterton running wide and into the tyre barriers.

perkins practice 1 2023 bathurst

At the time of the stoppage, Best was already clear of the field with a 2:06.6183s, with Perkins second with a 2:07.5355s.

When the session resumed, it was the Zak Best show, with the 21-year-old leaving his rivals for dead in his Gen2-spec Ford Mustang.

Best first improved to a 2:06.3770s, with Perkins responded with a 2:06.8772s. Best jumped into the 2:05s with a 2:05.8700s, with Perkins narrowly improving on his own benchmark to a 2:06.6788s.

The #17 Ford continued to set purple sectors, with Best firing in a 2:05.5454s before setting the session best time of a 2:05.5180s to stamp his authority on the field.

The session ran green until the chequered flag after Masterton's crash, save for an off by Jett Johnson at Murray's Corner. Third-generation racer Johnson ended up 23rd overall.

Dunlop Series drivers will return to the track for Practice 2 at 2:50pm AEDT.

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