TRADIE Racing’s David Reynolds and DEWALT Racing’s Mark Winterbottom placed ninth and 16th respectively in Practice 1 for this weekend’s Taupo Super400, as Supercars hit the track for the first time at Taupo Motorsport Park.

A single 90 minute practice session provided teams with a valuable opportunity to acclimate themselves to the nuances of the Taupo circuit. Dividing their focus between race simulations and qualifying runs, the team meticulously assessed tyre degradation and sought the optimal setup for both extended stints and one-lap performance.

Reynolds’ TRADIE Camaro was on song, showing strong pace across multiple sectors to finish a commendable ninth fastest. Winterbottom was 16th as he dialled in his setup for the Taupo circuit.

Saturday’s action sees Qualifying at 10:20am, the Top 10 Shootout at 12pm and Race 7 at 3:05pm, to be run over 60 laps, with the threat of rain looming.

All the action can be viewed live on Fox Sports & Kayo.


Mark Winterbottom, #18 DEWALT Racing Team 18 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

Practice 1: 16th

“We struggled today in practice just with flow and rhythm and couldn’t get the car to flow the way I wanted. But tyre life was really strong. There were positives, but just we weren’t fast enough and I really struggled to have the car to do what I wanted to do.

“We’ve made some changes and obviously with the rides, you can never really tell, but I’m feeling a lot better in some of the spots I was struggling. So, if it’s dry tomorrow, I’m definitely a lot more confident. I wasn’t after practice but I’m feeling a lot better now than what we were.

“If we can qualify at the front, our tyre life and race pace I think is going to be quite strong. So it’s all qualifying, that’s key for me. If we get that right, we’ll be in a good position.”

David Reynolds, #20 TRADIE Racing Team 18 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

Practice 2: 9th

“First time at Taupo in a Supercar. I rolled out of pit lane and was like, ‘Whoa, this is so different’, because it’s been a long time since I drove a high-powered car here. Like, 15 years ago, but I got up to speed pretty quickly I think.

“We had an hour and a half session, which was probably the best practice session we’ve had as a team or on my side of the garage since I joined the team. We rifled through some changes, and they all made sense, and we made the right change at the right time, and then made a better change after that to make the car faster. We kind of got faster and faster on an old set of tyres, which really doesn’t happen. So, it was a big day but it was a really positive day.

“We threw some tyres on at the end and the car was really good, it responded really well on the new tyre, and then made a small mistake, so we tried to correct that on the next set of tyres, and then I sprayed it again.

“I found it really hard to do a nice, smooth, 100 percent lap around here. It’s very bumpy, there’s a lot of surface changes. There’s the really old surface and a really new surface, so the car gives you completely different reads and different feelings and you have to drive them with different techniques, so it’s a very hard circuit to do, but we had a fantastic day and can’t wait for tomorrow.”