Mawer sets fastest ever lap at Sydney Motorsport Park

Bart Mawer in the RP968 Porsche set a blistering lap at Sydney Motorsport Park. Image: YWTA

Bart Mawer has set a new fastest-ever officially recorded lap at Sydney Motorsport Park in the opening sessions of the Yokohama World Time Attack.

Mawer lapped the Gardiner circuit in 1:18.837s aboard the RP968 4-litre Billet engined Porsche 968 which is a new record for the annual event and eclipsed the previous best of 1:19.2770s which he set in 2019.

The official lap record stands at 1.19.142s, set by Nico Hulkenberg when A1GP visited the venue in 2007.

“We felt the cooler conditions this morning would offer more in outright speed. There was a little oil down on Turn 8 which went a fair way, and it was a little more slippery than what I was expecting,” he said.

Any chance of going faster was snuffed out early in the next session when the Pro Class Porsche had the right rear CV assembly fail. “We made changes as we were looking to try some different things. I think there is more in it.”

Second fastest was Tim Slade in the Tanuki Nissan Silvia S13 (formerly MC Hammerhead) with his 1:20.456 in the third session. Slade missed the first session due to steering issues and had limited track time in the second when Mawer stopped.

“We really only had a proper run in the car yesterday and we tried a different tyre in the second session,” he reported and added it still feels a little like the car he drove previously despite the number of changes made since.

“We went back to our original tyre choice later. I feel there is lot more in me rather that the car,” he added.

Third fastest and first in Pro Am was Feras Qartoumy in the Chev Corvette who edged ahead of Pro and fellow American Cole Powelson in his Pro Nissan R35 GTR. The latter along with Pro Am’s Wayne Lee (S13) posted faster times late which relegated Slade in his other drive – the Open Class leading Skyline.

The Open Class is a tight contest with Nathan Morcom (Mitsubishi EVO) just 0.09s slower with the pair sixth and seventh respectively. Rob Nguyen (Ginetta G55) is third in class and ninth behind Drew Hall (Pro Am Skyline). Richard Perini (Ginetta G55) was 10th, and fourth in Pro Am.

Leading Australian Formula Open series driver Trent Grubel has a roof over his head for this weekend in a Subaru Impreza WRX and was the fastest in Clubsprint at 1:33.493.

Last year’s class winner Jamal Assaad was second six tenths away but with the work ahead after he crash the EVO 6RS and tore the right front suspension out.

The third and fourth fastest times went to Adam Casmiri in a Honda Integra and Toyota GR Yaris respectively.

The World Time Attack continues Saturday with further sessions for the four classes before their Shootouts for the top five in each. There is also Flying 500, Drifting Cup and numerous merchandising stands.

Ticket sales have exceeded 30,000 and the event is also being livestreamed.

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