Craig Lowndes is still smiling despite his spectacular crash with Warren Luff in practice this morning - because he is now convinced he has a car that can win the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
The Red Bull Racing Holden Commodore VF driver has struggled for pace all week at Bathurst, but overnight changes confirmed the car is now on the pace.
But moments after setting a time good enough for 10th fastest in the session on old tyres, Lowndes was in the wall, with the help of Luff's brakeless Holden Racing Team Commodore at turn 2.
Lowndes quickly ran to the HRT Commodore, which Luff is co-driving with Garth Tander, to help extricate from the car, which was lying on its side.
"I saw his car on its side and I wanted to get him out," said Lowndes. "He is a lanky bugger, he had his legs stuck around the steering column, but we got him out and he was okay."
Lowndes, who will share #888 with Steven Richards, only just made the ARMOR ALL top 10 shootout and now must depend on his crew to get the Commodore repaired in time for the 5.10pm start.
"Whether we get the car right for the top 10 doesn't really matter to me, I just want to get the car right for tomorrow," Lowndes told v8supercars.com.au.
"Now we know the car is fast so we are looking good." The team came to Bathurst with a radical aerodynamically slick set-up that RBRA engineering chief Ludo Lacroix said would be crucial to winning the race if it could be sorted it correctly.
"We have not moved completely away from that idea, we have made more geometry changes than aero changes this morning and the car was feeling really good.
"Mechanically we have made it better ... not much camber, more toe, caster and a few things.
"We were just struggling for balance yesterday. We had a good front at times and a good rear at times, but we never had a good combination. But this morning the car came together."