IRWIN Racing’s Mark Winterbottom was fifth fastest in the opening practice session at the Boost Mobile Gold Coast 500.

Winterbottom featured in the top ten in both of Friday’s practice sessions in fifth and tenth respectively, while Alspec Racing’s Scott Pye was 20th and 12th in each session.

However, the time sheets were largely influenced by kerb strikes which affected both Pye and Winterbottom’s fastest laps of the day. Both drivers tested the limits of the Surfers Paradise Street Circuit throughout the day with multiple kerb strikes which cancelled each lap time.

The conditions were hot on the Gold Coast today with ambient temperatures reaching 30 degrees and cabin temperatures passing 50 degrees, meaning drivers will be put to the test in the two 85-lap races over the weekend.

With two practice sessions down, attention now turns to Saturday’s qualifying session at 11:25am AEST, before the first of two 250 kilometre races kicking off at 3:45pm AEST which will be broadcast live on Channel 7 and Fox Sports.


Scott Pye, #20 Alspec Racing Team 18 Holden ZB Commodore 

Practice 1: P20 (1:12.0408)

Practice 2: P12 (1:11.2537)

“The first session was pretty tough because of the kerbs here and the restrictions on cutting them, so we lost a few laps where we didn’t register a time on the board at the end of the session, but our pace was ok.

“We tuned up the car a little bit and made some changes and went into Practice 2 with a good package and we finished P12. 

“It’s tight in front of us so there’s a little bit of work to do with that loaded lateral drive, so getting out of the corner will help us a lot and a little bit of kerb ride but that’s the one I’m sure everyone’s looking for.

“We’ll give it a bit of love tonight and hopefully come out for qualifying tomorrow a bit stronger.”

Mark Winterbottom, #18 IRWIN Racing Team 18 Holden ZB Commodore

Practice 1: P5 (1:11.5724)

Practice 2: P10 (1:11.2344)

“So good to be back, it’s a track I really missed. The chicanes at the back and the way the cars fly, they just don’t do that at any other circuit so to be back running around here was fantastic.

“It’s pretty warm out there, so the conditions will be tricky on the weekend. A couple of top ten finishes today but we do need to find a bit more so we’ll work hard tonight and turn up tomorrow and have a crack.”