Nissan drivers James Moffat and Todd Kelly fought for the top spot in the closing stages of practice two, the Norton Nissan best in the day’s second 20-minute run.
Moffat’s 1min10.153 was quicker than Fabian Coulthard’s 1min10.54 recorded in the first session, and just 0.05sec quicker than Jack Daniel’s teammate Todd Kelly in the second.
Fellow Norton Hornet Michael Caruso came in 10th, putting three of four Altimas in the top 10.
But ‘Moff’ warns the team will not get excited after running Dunlop soft tyres on his V8 Supercar that session.
“Practice two, so we’re just sticking to our program – that’s it, there’s not much to say. We’re not getting excited about anything,” The #360 driver told v8supercars.com.au.
“We’ve still got a lot of work to do. It’s nice for the team to have two cars at the top of the time sheets, but I’m sure everybody in these garages will know … we have to do it in qualifying.”
Changing conditions – including high temperatures – have made a difference as the day has gone on.
“It’s pretty hot – certainly quite a lot of difference in track condition from the first to the second session there,” Moffat said.
“I think also, we seem to find whenever the Touring Car Masters are on before us, they don’t do any favours to the track condition. I’m not sure if it’s the type of rubber they put down but it’s always generally pretty slippery straight up after them.
“The temperature is a little bit hotter than last year, so when it’s hotter the cars are not handling as well. But that’s the same for everybody.”
Four of the five manufacturers featured, with Ford this time missing out on a top 10 finish – the first was Chaz Mostert in 12th.
After Moffat and Kelly, Volvo’s Scott McLaughlin, Red Bull’s Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes, Erebus Mercedes’ Lee Holdsworth and Will Davison, and Brad Jones Racing’s’ Jason Bright and Coulthard, along with Caruso, completed the top 10.
Others to note include Championship leader Mark Winterbottom 15, Shane van Gisbergen 17, Garth Tander 18 and James Courtney 22.
The fourth Nissan of Rick Kelly finished 21st.
One more practice session will unfold at the SKYCITY Triple Crown today ahead of tomorrow’s qualifying and two 100km races, and Sunday’s 200km race, which will see the V8 Supercars run both Dunlop soft and hard tyres.
The final session begins at 2.25pm local time (2.55pm AEST).