Tyre conservation was top of Fabian Coulthard's mind at Symmons Plains today as extra track time and no extra tyre allocation compromised strategy for the Lockwood Racing driver.
V8 Supercars will run five practice sessions during this weekend's racing compared to the usual four but no extra tyres have been issued.
Coulthard, who ran in the top ten for most of the day, says it was this consideration that stopped him using up an extra set of tyres at the end of the day and going for glory. As a result he dropped to 20th on the time sheets.
He is now hoping to benefit from the conservative approach tomorrow, when there will be one final practice session at 10.10am before qualifying at 13.25 and the 59-lap race at 16.00.
"We've got extra time on the track and no extra tyres, which defeats the purpose. We would welcome the extra running if we had enough tyres to use it efficiently, but otherwise it's just pointless.
"I just think everybody else put tyres on towards the end and we didn't. Obviously we've got another practice session tomorrow. I'm not exactly unhappy with the car; it's quite good but the sheets don't reflect that we didn't go for glory today.
"We always aim to be in the top ten and that's where I think we are at the moment. Anywhere after that and it becomes a bit of a crash-fest."
Tasmania Challenge - 2012 V8 Supercars - Races 3 & 4
SYMMONS PLAINS INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY
PRACTICE SESSIONS P2 P3
01. Shane Van Gisbergen, SP Tools Racing, 0:51.4162
02. Will Davison, Trading Post FPR Ford, +0.1250
03. David Reynolds, The Bottle-O Racing Team, +0.1956
04. Mark Winterbottom , Orrcon Steel FPR Ford, +0.2449
05. Alexandre Premat , Fujitsu Racing GRM, +0.2896
06. Todd Kelly, Jack Daniel's Racing, +0.2981
07. Craig Lowndes, TeamVodafone, +0.3542
08. Tim Slade, Lucky 7 Racing, +0.3653
09. Lee Holdsworth, Irwin Racing Ford, +0.3816
10. Tony D'Alberto, Tony D'Alberto Racing, +0.3861
20. Fabian Coulthard, Lockwood Racing, +0.6455
Published: 30 March 2012.