Rooney sets early pace as Exton hits trouble


It was a very brief opening session for the Toyota 86 drivers as the Supercars weekend finale got underway at Taupo this morning, but it was a dramatic one for title contender William Exton.

Within just a handful of laps on a drying track, Exton ground to a halt with oil smoke pouring from the engine. Unfortunately that would mean an engine change as the first job of the weekend for the mechanics at Racelab.

The drivers completed just four flying laps before the session was stopped and in that time they worked their way down to impressive times.

Top of the list was Jackson Rooney with a high 1 minute 43 second lap, just a few tenths ahead of an impressive Lockie Bloxsom - the Aussie looking to impress the Supercars teams at the start of a busy weekend in the Toyota and in a Porsche.

Sixth and overcoming a mid-week bout of illness was Cormac Murphy in sixth while championship leader Tom Bewley was seventh having completed one less flying lap.

Tayler Bryant was eighth fastest and one of the stories of the last couple of rounds – Will Morton – was inside the top ten again in ninth.  Christina Orr-West was top of four women in the field with a good lap to put her into the top ten.

A second practice session later today will be followed by qualifying for the weekend’s first race on Saturday morning.