TICKFORD RACING – NTI TOWNSVILLE 500 FRIDAY REPORT
8 July, 2022
At the end of the first day of action at the NTI Townsville 500 in the books, Tickford Racing’s Cam Waters (No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang) was at the sharp end of the timing sheets, posting the second quickest lap of Practice 2 on the streets of Townsville. Waters, who picked up two wins in Townsville in 2021, is confident in his No. 6 Mustang as he looks to continue his recent run of form in 2022 that has included three race wins.
Thomas Randle (No. 55 Castrol Racing Ford Mustang) spent his day coming to grips with the Reid Park street circuit, turning his first laps at the venue since 2019. Despite practice results of 16th and 17th on Friday, Randle is optimistic he can factor in the top half of the field when Saturday’s action kicks off.
Citing a relative imbalance in his car on Friday, James Courtney (No. 5 Snowy River Caravans Ford Mustang) placed just 18th and 20th in the day’s respective practice sessions. Courtney, however remains confident that his team’s set up direction coming out of Friday will have him fighting towards the front on Saturday.
Jake Kostecki (No. 56 Tradie Ford Mustang) lost time on his final flying lap of Practice 2, negating what was on track for a top 10 time, but the 22-year old left the first day of action fairly pleased with his car’s speed, and believes there is more to find in the No. 56 Tradie Mustang.
The NTI Townsville 500 continues on Saturday with Race 19 qualifying starting at 9:50 a.m. AEST. The fastest 10 cars from that session will take part in the Top Ten Shootout at 12:00 p.m., which will finalise the grid for Race 19, an 88-lap, 250-kilometre race starting at 2:45 p.m.
No. 5 Snowy River Caravans Ford Mustang
Practice 1: 1m14.51s, 18th
Practice 2: 1m14.24s, 20th
“All in all it wasn’t a great day, but it’s only practice so we’re not too torn up about it. We wanted to try some things today and unfortunately they didn’t work out the way we had hoped. It’s not ideal but it’s not the end of the world, obviously the other side of the garage had a pretty good second session so we’ll look at their data and the data off the other cars and see what we can apply for tomorrow.”
No. 6 Monster Energy Ford Mustang
Practice 1: 1m14.21s, 13th
Practice 2: 1m13.52s, 2nd
“The car feels pretty good, we worked to a bit of a plan today and made some positive adjustments for the second session so I’m feeling pretty happy with where we ended up. It’s a bit tricky on the Hard tyre, just finding the limit of what it can do, but especially in the second practice I think we got the car into a good window which is nice. There’s definitely a bit more in it, a bit more speed to find, but we learnt a lot across all of our cars today so we’ll put that to good use and look to come out swinging on Saturday.”
No. 55 Castrol Racing Ford Mustang
Practice 1: 1m14.41s, 17th
Practice 2: 1m14.05s, 16th
“It wasn’t the smoothest day for us to be honest. I wasn’t totally happy with the balance today, and we had a few minor issues here and there that hampered us a little. Nothing massive, but it kind of put us off of our run plan, which isn’t what you want when you’re chasing speed. We’ll look over everything tonight, there’s a bit more in the car and a bit more in the driver, we’ll give them both a tune up and get it right for Saturday.”
No. 56 Tradie Ford Mustang
Practice 1: 1m14.29s, 16th
Practice 2: 1m14.42s, 22nd
“Today wasn’t too bad, we made some good changes with the car and found some good things throughout the day. We were on for a pretty solid time at the end of Practice 2 and I just made a mistake in the last sector, it’s a little frustrating not to put it together but it’s nice knowing the car has some decent speed in it. We’ll have a look and find some more speed overnight, and have a good crack at it tomorrow.”
Tim Edwards, Team Principal
“We tried a few different things with different cars today, that’s one of the benefits of having four cars is being able to send cars and drivers in different directions in practice. Obviously when you do that some guys find a good direction and others don’t, so it’s not surprising to see today as mixed as it was. But despite what the results look like we learnt a lot and we have a good idea of where the cars need to be, so we’ll adjust and tune as we need to for tomorrow and hopefully have all four cars running at the front when we go racing.”
DUNLOP SUPER2 SERIES
Returning to the site of his first Dunlop Super2 Series pole and win from a year ago, Zak Best (No. 78 Best Leisure Industries Ford Falcon FG X) put in a solid day of work in Townsville, placing second and fourth in Friday’s two practice sessions. The 20-year old was less than one tenth of a second from the top of the time sheets in both sessions, giving Best plenty of confidence that he can be in front running form on Saturday.
The Dunlop Super2 Series returns to action on Saturday with Race 5 qualifying at 9:05 a.m. AEST, followed by the 21-lap Race 5 at 1:25 p.m.
No. 78 Best Leisure Industries Ford Falcon FG X
Practice 1: 1m15.43s, 2nd
Practice 2: 1m15.29s, 4th
“Overall it was a good day for us, the car was pretty quick out of the box and we improved bit by bit over the two practice sessions, it’s a good way to start the weekend. Obviously it’s pretty close at the top of the field so we’ll try and tune up the car a bit more tonight, and hopefully we can stick it on the front two rows in qualifying and have a good, strong race in the afternoon.”