A clear sky and warm conditions greeted ASBK competitors this morning at Hidden Valley Raceway, the 2.87 km circuit situated 12km east of Darwin City, the Northern Territory capital.
One young bloke that got out of bed on the right side this morning was Tom Toparis. The 18-year-old dropped in a stunning 1m08.059 early in QP1.
Both Toparis and Cru Halliday had already gone under the previous Supersport lap record on Friday, but this morning both men were knocking on the door of the first ever 1m07s lap of Hidden Valley on a Supersport bike.
Halliday responded to Toparis’ 1m08.059 with a 1m08.028 to move back to the top of the leader-board before then becoming the first man in the 7s, a 1m07.951 in the dying seconds of QP1 earning Cru Halliday a new lap record. The previous Supersport race lap record was set by Ted Collins last year on 1m09.153 while the qualifying record had belonged to Mark Chiodo on 1m08.715. Both Halliday and Toparis smashing those markers this morning.
Max Croker and Lachlan Epis also joined the 1m08s club today, a 1m08.703 for Croker and 1m08.986 for Epis.
Supersport QP1 Times
Cru Halliday – Yamaha 1m07.951
Tom Toparis – Kawasaki 1m08.059
Max Croker – Suzuki 1m08.703
Lachlan Epis – Kawasaki 1m08.986
Giuseppe Scarcella – Kawasaki 1m09.480
Damon Rees – Honda 1m09.641
Zac Johnson – Yamaha 1m10.011
Mick Hefferan – Kawasaki 1m10.082
Ty Lynch – Yamaha 1m10.348
Scott Nicholson – Suzuki 1m10.387
Dallas Skeer – Suzuki 1m10.525
Rhys Belling – Yamaha 1m10.656
Graeme Smith – Kawasaki 1m13.905
New ground was also broke in the Supersport 300 class with Oli Bayliss and Seth Crump the first into the 1m17s. Oli Bayliss the quickest at 1m17.702s to lower the qualifying record he set here last year by more than a full second.
Supersport 300 QP1 Times
Oli Bayliss – Kawasaki 1m17.702
Seth Crump – KTM 1m17.966
Tom Bramich – Yamaha 1m18.483
Olly Simpson – Yamaha 1m18.733
Tayla Relph – Yamaha 1m18.895
Hunter Ford – Yamaha 1m19.454
Harry Khouri – Yamaha 1m19.524
Ben Baker – Kawasaki 1m19.648
Callum O’Brien – Yamaha 1m19.659
Locky Taylor – Yamaha 1m19.680
Zac Levy – Yamaha 1m19.705
Max Stauffer – Yamaha 1m20.357
Ben Bramich – KTM 1m20.429
Mitch Simpson – Yamaha 1m20.686
Travis Hall – Yamaha 1m20.710
Laura Brown – Yamaha 1m21.375
Zane Ford – Yamaha 1m22.011
Jack Cousens – Yamaha 1m23.135
Ryan Moscardini – Yamaha 1m25.412
YMI Superbike QP1
While there had been very little wind for the other categories, a breeze had started blowing up the main straight when Superbike competitors hit the track on schedule at 1040 this morning.
Close behind on Friday was Troy Bayliss, his Ducati 1299 Panigale R Final Edition visibly faster than we have seen it before, a fact remarked on by some of his competitors. A new exhaust system and some tuning changes bearing some powerful fruit. Unfortunately there is no speed trap here at Hidden Valley Raceway to give you actual numbers but trust me, it’s fast!
Neither Bayliss nor Herfoss were in any hurry to take to the track this morning though, both men no doubt saving tyre wear. Daniel Falzon and Bryan Staring were also happy to sit out the first half of the session.
Troy Bayliss went straight to the top of the charts on his first flyer, a 66.225s lap put in just before the halfway mark of the 30-minute session. TB then dropped in a stunning 1m05.601 on his next lap, well under the 1m05.986s lap record set here by Josh Waters last year. Bayliss only did three laps during the session but that was all he needed to take provisional pole and send a shot across the bows of his competitors and declare that he was on a mission to win here in Darwin.
Josh Waters had gone out a little before Bayliss but crashed at turn ten. He quickly remounted and returned to the pits but it’s fair to say at this stage of the game that Josh and the Ecstar Suzuki squad are going to have to turn things around if they are to emulate the double-victory success they enjoyed here last year. Waters finishing QP1 ninth quickest, just behind his young teammate Mark Chiodo.
Bryan Staring went out late in the session and lowered his previous 1m06.401s best from yesterday to a 1m06.088s before returning to the pits. The BCperformance Kawasaki man putting only four laps on his Dunlops in the session, but that was all he needed to finish Q1 in second place behind Bayliss.
Daniel Falzon clocked up quite a few laps in the second half of the session but crashed at turn five while on his tenth lap. The South Australian was quickly back up but had to settle for fourth quickest this morning, a 1m06.376 making him the fastest Yamaha.
Troy Herfoss finally joined the track with seven-minutes remaining. TB was in the pits watching the monitors, wondering if the Honda man was going to spoil his party. In Herfoss’ first time attack he was fractionally quicker to the first split but marginally slower at the second and then lost time in the final sector. The Honda man put in a few more laps but failed to get a really clean run which meant he also failed to improve on the 66.033 he set yesterday, ending QP1 third quickest on 66.228.
Jamie Stauffer put in a lot of laps during Q1 and ended the session an impressive fifth quickest ahead of Wayne Maxwell and Glenn Allerton.
Arthur Sissis rounded out the top ten a fraction behind Waters but ahead of Glenn Scott, Matt Walters and Kyle Buckley.
Superbike QP1 Times
Troy Bayliss – Ducati 1m05.601
Bryan Staring – Kawasaki 1m06.088
Troy Herfoss – Honda 1m06.228
Daniel Falzon – Yamaha 1m06.376
Jamie Stauffer – Ducati 1m06.429
Wayne Maxwell – Yamaha 1m06.514
Glenn Allerton – BMW 1m06.603
Mark Chiodo – Suzuki 1m06.847
Josh Waters – Suzuki 1m06.890
Arthur Sissis – Suzuki 1m06.895
Glenn Scott – Kawasaki 1m07.059
Matt Walters – Kawasaki 1m07.069
Kyle Buckley – Kawasaki 1m07.355
Lachlan Epis – Kawasaki 1m07.399
Mitch Levy – Yamaha 1m07.717
Mitch Rees – Honda 1m07.786
Alex Phillis – Suzuki 1m07.883
Sloan Frost – Suzuki 1m08.041
Sam Lambert – Kawasaki 1m08.198
Ted Collins – BMW 1m08.369
Ben Stronach – Yamaha 1m08.577
Brad Swallow – Kawasaki 1m08.816
Heath Griffin – Ducati 1m09.903
Adam Senior – Yamaha 1m10.226
Phil Czaj – Aprilia 1m10.334
Evan Bykes – Kawasaki 1m11.061
2018 ASBK Calendar
Round 4- Hidden Valley Raceway, Darwin NT June 29 – 1 July
Round 5- Morgan Park Raceway, Warwick QLD August 17 – 19
Round 6- Winton Motor Raceway, Benalla, VIC September 7 – 9
Round 7- Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, VIC October 12 – 14
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