Bathurst newcomers impress Tander and Mostert

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 02/02/2018
  • By Mitchell Adam

Great Race winners Garth Tander and Chaz Mostert were impressed by the performances of team-mates and Mount Panorama newcomers Frederic Vervisch and Augusto Farfus in Bathurst 12 Hour practice.

The Supercar stars are contesting the GT enduro with Audi and BMW respectively, joined by factory drivers.

Both entries contain drivers making their maiden Bathurst appearance; Tander with Vervisch and Kelvin Van der Linde, and Mostert with DTM racer Farfus.

The cars occupied the top two spots in Friday’s three full-field practice sessions, Vervisch putting the Audi on top at the end of the day.

“He’s good, really good,” Tander told Supercars.com of Vervisch.

“He was the fastest Audi driver at Spa [in the 24 Hours], so of all the tracks at Europe that you compare to here, Spa’s probably it.

“He was the fastest guy there and straight into it here.

“From his prep, we spent a lot of time on the track walk, and I knew full well they’d be on it straight away.”

Tander predicted his team-mates would settle in quickly, with his day built around maximising their time in the R8 LMS.

Liqui Moly Bathurst 12HR

“We ticked all the objectives, and for me personally it was getting comfortable in the car again,” he said.

“It’s May since I’ve driven the car, I haven’t done any testing so it’s the first time I’ve driven a car since [November’s Supercars season finale in] Newcastle.

“It’s just getting in the groove, and then obviously with Frederick (above) and Kelvin, giving them plenty of laps, learning the track.

“They’re pros, they were straight into it. The car’s good, it’s straight.

“I’ll probably do a few more laps tomorrow. I’m comfortable with where I’m at, my speed’s OK. We’re cruising.”

A race winner in both the DTM and World Touring Car Championship with BMW, Farfus topped Practice 2 and 3 in the Schnitzer Motorsport M6 GT3.

Wittmann is making his second 12 Hour visit and set the car’s fastest time in Practice 4.

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Mostert declared his team-mates were both “super fast” and “very impressive out there”.

“Augusto, it seemed like he’s been driving here for 10 years,” he told Supercars.com.

“He’s a massive talent. It’s amazing to be teamed up with him.

“Hopefully I can learn some things off these guys this weekend and try to bring it back to Supercars.”

Farfus, Mostert and Wittmann formed three quarters of BMW’s line-up in the FIA GT World Cup in Macau last November, the trio finishing fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

“All the BMW guys had a fair bit to do with each other [in Macau],” Mostert added.

“So it was great to bond with those guys in Macau and then for BMW to announce that they’re coming here and I’m going to be teamed up with those two was pretty awesome.

“I’m looking forward to the weekend. I think there’s big expectations, we’ll just have to see how we go.”

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