Six-time champ Jamie Whincup has edged early fast man Rick Kelly by just 0.008sec in the second practice session at Hidden Valley.
In an incredibly close session at the CrownBet Darwin Triple Crown, 23 cars were separated by less than 0.7sec with all four manufacturers in the top five cars.
Whincup’s teammate Shane van Gisbergen was home third behind the Nissan Altima, with Volvo’s Scott McLaughlin and Ford’s Scott Pye – in a new car this weekend – completing the top five.
Whincup was happy earlier today with second and managed to make it one better in the second run.
“I feel we unlocked a few things on the test day last week and things are starting to make sense again – to be honest, we were a bit confused last race weekend,” Whincup said. He attributed it to “mainly setup stuff”.
Despite temperatures in the 30s, Whincup was feeling fresh after running his cool suit during the session.
“I’m feeling good – when the car is nice to drive you use half the energy. It’s only Friday though.”
DJR Team Penske’s Fabian Coulthard was close behind in sixth, despite losing half the session after his team completed a precautionary engine change after a misfire in practice one.
Lee Holdsworth in 11th was just 0.1765sec from the leader, demonstrating just how close the top 10 is this weekend at Hidden Valley.
Rookie Aaren Russell ran off at turn 10, damaging his Plus Fitness Racing Commodore hitting the tyres, while Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport’s Andre Heimgartner continued to suffer from power steering issues.
The Supercars hit the track at 9.55am local time for practice tomorrow before qualifying and racing.