Newcastle Supercars: Holdsworth leads opening practice

Lee Holdsworth topped the opening practice session on the streets of Newcastle, as Shane van Gisbergen ended up well clear of Supercars title rival Scott McLaughlin.

Newcastle Supercars: Holdsworth leads opening practice

It was David Reynolds that set the early pace, leading the way at the 10-minute mark thanks to his 1m11.739s.

It took another 10 minutes for the next change, McLaughlin going quickest with a 1m11.622s, as Jamie Whincup slotted into second with a 1m11.729s.

Holdsworth, who had sat second behind Reynolds earlier in the session, then jumped to the top right at the half-way point with a 1m11.600s.

Reynolds returned to the top eight minutes later with a 1m11.526s, only for Holdsworth to hit back immediately with a 1m11.423s.

But that time didn't last long either, Shane van Gisbergen, who had moved into the top three, going quickest with a 1m11.313s.

The finally flurry of activity at the top of the times came inside the final two minutes, sparked by Reynolds making his third appearance in top spot with a 1m11.143s. He was quickly replaced by van Gisbergen's 1m10.883s, before Holdsworth – currently on the market for 2019 – landed the knock-out blow with a 1m10.820s.

“With where everything is at the moment, I need to show what I can do,” said Holdsworth

"I haven’t had the opportunity all year, but finally we’ve rolled out something that’s quite a decent car.

"I’ve got confidence to push this thing, run right up to the walls and things like that. I just love these street circuits and this track, it’s awesome.

"I’m having fun but I’ve got a lot on the mind as well."

Van Gisbergen and Reynolds finished the session second and third respectively, followed by Chaz Mostert and Craig Lowndes.

Walkinshaw pair Scott Pye and James Courtney were sixth and seventh, as Nissan trio Michael Caruso, Andre Heimgartner and Simona de Silvestro rounded out the Top 10.

As for the title battle, van Gisbergen's second spot left him well clear of rival McLaughlin. The DJR Team Penske driver ended up way down in 15th, one spot behind teammate Fabian Coulthard.

Cla # Driver Car Time Gap
1 18 Australia Lee Holdsworth Holden Commodore ZB 1'10.8203  
2 97 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 1'10.8833 0.0630
3 9 Australia David Reynolds Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.0632 0.2429
4 55 Australia Chaz Mostert Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.3006 0.4803
5 888 Australia Craig Lowndes Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.3321 0.5118
6 2 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.3852 0.5649
7 25 Australia James Courtney Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.3903 0.5700
8 23 Australia Michael Caruso Nissan Altima 1'11.4125 0.5922
9 7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Nissan Altima 1'11.4139 0.5936
10 78 Switzerland Simona de Silvestro Nissan Altima 1'11.4275 0.6072
11 6 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.4381 0.6178
12 19 Australia Jack Le Brocq Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.4487 0.6284
13 230 Australia Will Davison Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.5115 0.6912
14 12 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.5520 0.7317
15 17 New Zealand Scott McLaughlin Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.5647 0.7444
16 1 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.5788 0.7585
17 8 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.6312 0.8109
18 35 Australia Todd Hazelwood Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.6339 0.8136
19 15 Australia Rick Kelly Nissan Altima 1'11.7519 0.9316
20 56 New Zealand Richie Stanaway Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.7672 0.9469
21 14 Australia Tim Slade Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.7701 0.9498
22 33 Australia Garth Tander Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.8230 1.0027
23 34 Australia James Golding Holden Commodore ZB 1'11.8753 1.0550
24 5 Australia Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon FG X 1'11.9136 1.0933
25 99 Australia Anton De Pasquale Holden Commodore ZB 1'12.0663 1.2460
26 21 Australia Tim Blanchard Holden Commodore ZB 1'12.0726 1.2523
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