AGP 2019 Wrap: Day one

Thursday 14 March, 2019
Re-live all the action from an entertain first day.

Virgin Australia Supercars Championship

Scott McLaughlin has continued his dream start to 2019, finishing on pole in both of today’s Virgin Australian Supercars Championship qualifying sessions.

The Ford Mustang pilot was untroubled throughout the first session of qualifying, his closest rival being teammate Fabian Coulthard.  Remarkably both drivers managed to finish the session under the current Albert Park qualifying record.

In the second session of the day, Chaz Mostert overcame a disastrous 22nd in the first to qualify for the second race on the front row, while McLaughlin earned his third pole for 2019 on just his first lap, with the 2018 champion unable replicate his form for the remainder of laps.

“The driver needs a big tune-up after that second lap, I just made a mistake,” McLaughlin said.

“It wasn’t my best lap by any means. I had a really good first sector and half a good second sector, I was lucky to hold on in that last sector.

“The car is good, it was awesome, the 53.8 [from first qualifying] was amazing. I’m stoked for everyone at Shell V-Power Racing and Ford Performance.” 

The Virgin Australia Supercars Championship will have a further two more qualifying session early tomorrow afternoon before the first of four races later in the day.

CAMS PAYCE Australian Formula 4 Championship 

The CAMS PAYCE Australian Formula 4 Championship has had thrilling start to the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix with only six thousands of a second separating the top two drivers.

Making his grand return to the category, Luis Leeds ended the day in Castrol Pole Position over 2018 champion Jayden Ojeda after a sensational qualifying session saw the two battle it out through the 20 minute session.

Despite Ojeda leading the field for much of the session, Leeds managed to clinch pole in the final seconds of the session, confirming AGI Sports front row lockout in the process.

“It literally feels like a dream,” Leeds said

“AGI had the car absolutely hooked up. Going into the last lap, I knew Jayden was in front of me. I had to push my absolute heart out.

“I’ve got such a great opportunity to go out there, get on a pole and I did just that.”

The CAMS PAYCE Australian Formula 4 Championship will hold the first race of its 2019 season on Friday morning at 10.55am.

CAMS Australian GT Championship

The CAMS Australian GT Championship had the honour of being the first category to compete for points as McLaren’s Fraser Ross took out the first race of the weekend.

Less than one second separated Ross, Max Twigg and American based Kenny Habul for the majority of the race, however after Habul went wide on the seventh lap and dropped out, the race opened up.

Following Habul's exit, Ross took his opportunity, overtook Twigg on the eighth lap and held on to score maximum points in a thrilling race, as Peter Hackett finished third.

The result was a harsh ending for the 2018 CAMS Endurance Champion in Twigg, who had taken pole earlier on in the day ahead of Abdul and Ross. 

In the second qualifying session of the day, Ross managed to finish on pole ahead of the three Mercedes cars with Habul, Hackett and Twigg all qualifying ahead of 2018 GT champion Geoff Emery.

The CAMS Australian GT Championship will hold the second race of the round at 10:15 tomorrow morning.

Porsche PAYCE Carrera Cup Australia

Dale Wood has owned the first day of competition in the Porsche PAYCE Carrera Cup Australia claiming both pole position and the first race in what was a dominate performance. 
Wood began the day on a high claiming the fastest time ahead of Michael Almond and Dylan O'Keeffe who had an entertaining battle between themselves, before the second competitive race in the day provided one a thrilling finish.
Only four hundredths of a second separated Wood, O'Keefe and young sensation Jordan Love as the trio crossed the finish line today as Almond sustained issues early on in the day to retire from the race.
He wasn't the only major causality as Steve Richards and Josh Hunt also failed to finish the race, ending an fantastic opening day of the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix 2019.  
The Porsche PAYCE Carrera Cup Australia will take centre stage just once tomorrow with the second race of the weekend to occur at 14:55.


2019 Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli

Blackbird Concessionaires were the pick of the bunch in the Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli Asia Pacific, with the team topping the charts in the opening two practice sessions. 

In the first session, David Pun managed to post the fastest lap over teammate Phillip Prette, just under two seconds separating the two, while Zagame Melbourne’s Hector Lester came in one second slower for third.

Prette was the man to beat in the second session thanks to his time of two minutes, as second placed James Weiland ended the practice just one second faster than Go Max.

The Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli Asia Pacific will kick off proceedings tomorrow morning with its qualifying session the only track action for the day.