Phillip Island Supercars: McLaughlin fastest despite traffic woes

Supercars champion Scott McLaughlin led the way in Practice 3 at Phillip Island despite a tussle with James Golding that ruined his final run.

Phillip Island Supercars: McLaughlin fastest despite traffic woes

The DJR Team Penske driver spent the majority of the session on top with a comfortable margin, a 1m30.186s set on the five-minute mark leaving him over three-tenths clear of the likes of Jamie Whincup and Chaz Mostert.

There was little in the way of meaningful improvement in the middle part of the session, which for the third time this weekend was briefly interrupted by wild geese that wandered onto the circuit.

With three minutes to go McLaughlin looked set to try and lower his benchmark, however he was baulked by a slow-moving James Golding at the apex of Turn 1.

That opened the door for teammate Fabian Coulthard to have a crack at top spot, the Friday pacesetter falling 0.04s short of McLaughlin's time.

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James Courtney also threatened McLaughlin's time with a purple first sector, but ultimately couldn't even best the 1m30.417s he'd set a lap earlier.

And that left the reigning champ on top, despite effectively missing out on his final run due to that Golding run-in.

“It was a bit of a balls-up. It’s not the nicest thing going down the front straight and cars weaving going into one of the fastest corners in Australia,” said McLaughlin.

“It was pretty wild. I actually thought he saw me there so I was going to keep going, then he kept coming across and I was like ‘oh crap’.

“At least it’s only practice, but Jimmy is a smart guy, I’m sure he won’t do it again."

Golding admitted after the session that he'd simply failed to spot McLaughlin coming.

“I was just warming my tyres up out of the pits and didn’t see Scotty coming up behind me,” he said. “I obviously wouldn’t be doing that sort of thing on purpose, lucky it wasn’t qualifying otherwise I’d be getting a penalty."

Courtney ended up best of the rest behind the Penske Mustangs, the Walkinshaw Holden driver followed by Cam Waters, Whincup and Mostert, the latter two not improving on their earlier times.

Todd Hazelwood was seventh fastest, Lee Holdsworth eighth, and Andre Heimgartner and Scott Pye rounding out the Top 10.

Cla # Driver Car Time Gap
1 17 New Zealand Scott McLaughlin Ford Mustang GT 1'30.1861  
2 12 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Ford Mustang GT 1'30.2304 0.0443
3 22 Australia James Courtney Holden Commodore ZB 1'30.4177 0.2316
4 6 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 1'30.4907 0.3046
5 88 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 1'30.5027 0.3166
6 55 Australia Chaz Mostert Ford Mustang GT 1'30.5605 0.3744
7 35 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 1'30.5610 0.3749
8 5 Australia Lee Holdsworth Ford Mustang GT 1'30.7593 0.5732
9 7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Nissan Altima L33 1'30.7711 0.5850
10 200 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 1'30.9274 0.7413
11 9 Australia David Reynolds Holden Commodore ZB 1'30.9939 0.8078
12 15 Australia Rick Kelly Nissan Altima L33 1'31.0991 0.9130
13 97 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.1468 0.9607
14 18 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.2502 1.0641
15 99 Australia Anton De Pasquale Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.2872 1.1011
16 3 Garry Jacobson Nissan Altima L33 1'31.3018 1.1157
17 14 Australia Tim Slade Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.3836 1.1975
18 21 Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.4554 1.2693
19 8 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.5832 1.3971
20 23 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 1'31.5988 1.4127
21 34 Australia James Golding Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.6841 1.4980
22 78 Switzerland Simona de Silvestro Nissan Altima L33 1'31.6926 1.5065
23 33 New Zealand Richie Stanaway Holden Commodore ZB 1'31.8125 1.6264
24 19 Australia Jack Le Brocq Holden Commodore ZB 1'32.0771 1.8910
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Phillip Island Supercars: Coulthard fastest, Whincup misses Q2

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