Stichbury fastest at Taupo

Zach (940 x 450)

Zac Stichbury topped the practice times at the Taupo International Motorsport Park on Friday as the Toyota 86 Championship geared up for its penultimate 2022 round this weekend.

Drivers concluded two days of practice and it was Stichbury who emerged with the fastest times from both days.

Ronan Murphy backed up good pace on Thursday's unofficial practice day with the fastest time in Friday morning’s session, noting some very worthwhile work on the car between rounds by his Action Motorsports team that certainly helped with his overall pace.

Brock Gilchrist was fast again, trailing Murphy by just a tenth of a second with championship leader Rowan Shepherd a further couple of tenths back.  Sharing fourth fastest times were Simon Evans and the big surprise of the session, Todd Foster. John Penny, Dion Pitt, Thursday pace setter Zac Stichbury and Marco Giltrap rounded out the top ten.

The second afternoon session was topped by Stichbury who dipped into the 1 minute 44 second bracket. Gilchrist backed up his morning form with second place.

Hugo Allan was third fastest for The Heart of Racing while Murphy showed pace again with fourth fastest time. Evans was there again in fifth followed by Pitt, Shepherd, Penny, McCutcheon and the in-form Foster completed the top ten in that session.

The third session was ended prematurely when Marco Giltrap stopped out on track before any meaningful times were recorded.

Saturday morning brings qualifying before the first race on Saturday afternoon, with the grid based on fastest times recorded in the morning qualifying session. Sunday morning’s race will be a reverse top ten and the afternoon feature race will have a grid based on points scored over the weekend.