Nick Percat’s red-hot qualifying form in the 2013 Porsche Carrera Cup has continued with the South Australian putting his 911 GT3 on pole position for the three-race program at Albert Park.
Percat was the only driver among the crackerjack field – lauded as the most impressive at Albert Park in nearly a decade – to tap into the 1min58-second bracket, which was more than sufficient to keep the fast-finishing Steve Richards in check.
“I couldn’t be happier! It’s unbelievable – two meetings, two pole positions, the first on my home track and the second at my ‘other’ home – I live just five minutes away from Albert Park,” said Percat.
“To do it up against Steven Richards, (Craig) Baird and all these guys shows we’ve got good car speed; now we just need to translate it into the race.
“I only had one day in the car before the Clipsal 500, so I’m still learning the ropes in things like the tyre and how it reacts, but these cars are really good here. We’ve probably got a car that’s a bit loose everywhere -- but then loose is fast, as they say. It’s like an open-wheeler: you can really throw it around.”
Richards set his best lap in the dying minutes of the session, which saw him vault past 2013 Porsche Carrera Cup leader and multiple Albert Park winner Baird, with Warren Luff completing the top four.
At the season-opening Carrera Cup round in Adelaide Baird won two of the two three races to eke out an early championship lead over Richards and Percat. The 2013 series will be held over seven rounds.
Michael Patrizi, Shae Davies and Matthew Kingsley were also impressive in qualifying, which was dominated by the ‘professional’ class drivers.
The first ‘elite’ driver – the Carrera Cup classification for those who enjoy racing without it being their prime income stream – was James Koundouris in 10th position.
All 22 drivers made it through qualifying unscathed, and will return for the opening eight-lapper at 6:20pm tomorrow.