Shannons Nationals The Bend Review: Friday

The last Shannons Nationals Friday session is done and dusted with the six competing categories all building towards a brilliant finale at The Bend Motorsport Park.

Following the conclusion of the day, stay updated with all the results of each series.

S5000

New boy Thomas Randle has sent a message to his rival competitors ahead of the second outing for Australia’s newest category.

The Dunlop Super2 regular finished both of today’s practice sessions as the fastest, while two Virgin Australia Supercars Championship drivers ended the day with a second apiece.

In practice one, it was Sandown’s victor James Golding who nabbed the second fastest time ahead of another newcomer in Anton De Pasquale, who finished the second session behind Randle.

The series continues tomorrow with qualifying on Saturday morning before the first qualifying race during the afternoon.

Carsales TCR Australia Series

Two different winners in today’s practice sessions saw Andre Heimgartner beat Tony D’Alberto in session one and Aaron Cameron finish ahead of Chris Pither in session two.

In both sessions, current runner-up Dylan O’Keefe rounded out the top three fastest drivers as the battle for second place heats up with D’Alberto, O’Keefe and Cameron all in the running.

Series winner Will Brown had a difficult day at the office, finishing 10th during both sessions, while Australian international driver James Allen
enjoyed two top 10 times in his first appearance at The Bend.

The series has its 30-minute qualifying session tomorrow at 9:30am before the first of three races at 12:45pm tomorrow afternoon.

The Porsche Michelin GT3 Cup Challenge

Today’s action saw two practice sessions and qualifying take place with Ryan Suhle ending the day in pole after a lightning quick lap time in what was a brilliant performance.

Aaron Love backed up his practice two fastest time with a P2 finish for qualifying, while Max Vidau edged out series leader and practice one winner Harri Jones to start tomorrow’s race from third.

Brett Boulton will start the highest in the TAG-Heuer Pro AM class after qualifying in eighth – eight places ahead of class leader Sam Shahin. Just one place behind in the outright standings was Andrew Goldie.

With the series holding all three of the round’s races tomorrow, fans can expect a huge climax to the 2019 season.

Australian Prototype Series

Ahead of the season finale, the series held three practice sessions with 2017 winner Mark Laucke ending the day posting the fastest time in two of three practice sessions

Earlier in the day, it was current series runner-up Daniel Gonzalez who was the fastest of the day, beating out series leader David Barram.

Heading into the round in third place overall, John Paul Drake also enjoyed a consistent day, hanging around the top three in all sessions.

The series has qualifying at 8.30am which will set up the first of two races at 15:05 ACDT.

Australian Production Cars

A dominant day for Coleby Cowham and Lindsey Kearns saw the duo win both practice sessions and qualify first for tomorrow’s opening race.

The pair were unstoppable all day and finished quite ahead of the chasing pack, which was made up of Grant Sherrin and Bradley Carr, while series leaders Chris Lillis and Nathan Callaghan struggled during the practice sessions.

However, it was a completely different story in qualifying as Callaghan earned a solid third place behind a shock runner-up in Duane West, while the Sherrins will start the first race in fourth, one place ahead of Carr.

The series has two races tomorrow with race one at 10.35 and the second to wrap up the day at 16:10.

The Excel Nationals

Like the Production Cars, it was a day dominated by one sole car and in the Excels, which boast the largest entry list for the weekend, Benjamin Grice was the fastest in each practice session and secured pole.

South Australian Asher Johnston troubled Grice in both practice sessions but couldn’t back it up in qualifying, finishing qualifying in fifth place.

A brilliant final lap from Andrew Hobby saw him secure a spot on the front row ahead of Cooper Webster and Joel Johnson.

The Excels Nationals kick off proceedings tomorrow morning with a 20-minute race at 8am ACDT before the second race at 14:35.

The action continues tomorrow from 8am with tickets to the Shannons Nationals starting from $20 per day and $30 for a weekend pass.

Click here to purchase tickets to the season finale.

Fans unable to attend the round can catch the live stream on motorsportaustraliachampionships.com.au Saturday and Sunday from 9am local time.