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Barnicoat Sets Pace In AGT SuperSprint, Mies’ Record Still Stands

59Racing's McLaren 720S GT3 came closest to breaking the lap record

After almost four hours of track time for Australian GT teams in the 2019 AGT SuperSprint last week, the outright GT3 lap record at Bathurst remained unbeaten.

The event, formerly known as Challenge Bathurst, saw a number of GT3 cars hit the track over two days (Thursday and Friday), with a chance to gun for the record in an un-restricted 40-minute session on Friday.

The best time of the event came, unsurprisingly, in the aforementioned unrestricted session, Ben Barnicoat in 59Racing’s McLaren 720S GT3 setting a 2:00.564. While that wasn’t enough to eclipse Christopher Mies’ 1:59.291 from last year, it was still an impressive lap in what was the 720S GT3’s maiden appearance at the circuit. Here, head-wind on the main straight and the hotter warmer early afternoon conditions ensured the Mies benchmark would remain unbeaten.

Barnicoat’s time was by far the quickest in the session though. Shane van Gisbergen, who like Barnicoat was quick throughout the SuperSprint meeting, and topped the second and third sessions, could only manage a 2:03.879 in his #888 Triple Eight Mercedes AMG GT3 EVO. Behind the top four was completed by the two Valvoline Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVOs, Mies’ best tour in the #2 the better of the two, a 2:04.071.

Ultimately just three cars were prepared to chase a time, and one of those was eliminated almost immediately after Vince Muriti suffered a spin on his own water at ‘The Cutting’, bringing out a red flag. The #33 Perfect Auto Body Audi, fortunately, avoided the walls to return to pit lane unscathed, but damage to the radiator sidelined the team. It ended any chance Luke Youlden (Muriti’s teammate) had at challenging the record – the former Bathurst 1000 winner lamenting his first chance to tackle the circuit on green tyres and without BoP restrictions.

After the session resumed the McLaren continued the charge with a sequence of purple sectors, ultimately going best on its final attempt with time running out. Barnicoat’s best wasn’t enough to beat Mies, but it was the fastest of the event and was achieved despite suffering damage from light contact with the barriers at the top of the mountain.

In addition to the GT3 machinery on show, there was a selection of other cars that were entered in the event. The fastest non-GT3 time came during the third of the four sessions, the #120 MARC II Mustang setting a 2:06.241 with Adam Hargraves at the wheel.

That concluded the 2019 Australian GT season, with plans already well underway for 2020, a season which will begin at the Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour with the CAMS Australian Endurance Championship, before heading back to Mount Panorama in Easter for the opening round of the CAMS Australian GT Championship.

SESSION 1 TIMES:

1. 2. Christopher Mies – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:03.5080
2. 888. Shane van Gisbergen – Triple Eight Race Eng. Mercedes AMG GT3 EVO – 2:04.3660
3. 1. Christopher Mies – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:05.4280
4. 33. Luke Youlden – Perfect Auto Body, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:05.7300
5. 1. Garth Tander – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:06.1860
6. 777. Yasser Shahin – The Bend Motorsport Park, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:06.3550
7. 59. Ben Barnicoat – 59Racing, McLaren 720S GT3 – 2:06.4090
8. 129. Liam Talbot – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Lamborghini Huracan GT3 – 2:08.4900
9. 69. James Koundouris – Supabarn, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:08.6890
10. 120. Adam Hargraves – Local Search, MARC II Mustang – 2:08.9950
11. 19. Mark Griffith – Daimler Trucks Newcastle, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:09.8390
12. 29. John Martin – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Huracan Super Trofeo EVO – 2:09.8880
13. 77. Dean Grant – Urban Alley Brewery, BMW M6 GT3 – 2:10.2610
14. 7. Tony Quinn – Local Legends, Aston Martin Vantage GT3 – 2:11.6270
15. 295. Geoff Taunton – Taunton Excavations, MARC II Mustang – 2:11.8270
16. 33. Vince Muriti – Perfect Auto Body, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:13.1620
17. 25. Nick Karnaros – Earth Electrical, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:13.2620
18. 96. Kurt Kostecki – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:13.5240
19. 81. Chris Perini – GWR/991Racing, Radical SR3RSX – 2:13.8660
20. 96. Brett Hobson – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:14.0280
21. 31. Peter Paddon – First Focus, Radical SR3RS – 2:14.4510
22. 74. Jason Miller – Stokes Skis Australia, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:15.0350
23. 80. Paul Braico – GWR, Radical SR3RS – 2:16.9470
24. 75. Adrian Deitz – Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi R8 LMS GT3 ultra – 2:18.6080
25. 16. Victor Zagame – Zagame’s, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:18.7070
26. 87. David Greig – Daikin, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:18.8610
27. 34. Stephen Champion – GWR/Champion’s Bus. Growth Adv. Radical SR3RS – 2:20.0180
28. 64. Joseph Ensabella – Aaron Laboratories, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:21.9810
29. 96. Jake Kostecki – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:23.7240
30. 17. Sebastian Lip – The Bend Motorsport Park, Radical SR3RS – 2:27.8830

SESSION 2 TIMES:

1. 888. Shane van Gisbergen – Triple Eight Race Eng. Mercedes AMG GT3 EVO – 2:03.8940
2. 59. Ben Barnicoat/Tom Blomqvist – 59Racing, McLaren 720S GT3 – 2:05.1270
3. 1. Christopher Mies/Garth Tander – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:05.1800
4. 33. Vince Muriti/Luke Youlden – Perfect Auto Body, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:05.2870
5. 2. Garth Tander/Christopher Mies – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:05.7000
6. 777. Yasser Shahin/SVG – The Bend Motorsport Park, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:05.7410
7. 77. Dean Grant/Steve Richards – Urban Alley Brewery, BMW M6 GT3 – 2:08.0220
8. 129. Liam Talbot – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Lamborghini Huracan GT3 – 2:08.1330
9. 96. Hobson/Kostecki/Kostecki – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:09.4870
10. 69. James Koundouris/Theo Koundouris – Supabarn, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:09.5570
11. 120. Hargraves/Sbirrazzouli/Jilsen – Local Search, MARC II Mustang – 2:10.1880
12. 29. John Martin – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Huracan Super Trofeo EVO – 2:10.5470
13. 295. Geoff Taunton/Dylan O’Keefe – Taunton Excavations, MARC II Mustang – 2:11.2880
14. 7. Tony Quinn – Local Legends, Aston Martin Vantage GT3 – 2:12.5490
15. 19. Mark Griffith – Daimler Trucks Newcastle, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:13.1160
16. 31. Peter Paddon – First Focus, Radical SR3RS – 2:14.0230
17. 74. Jason Miller – Stokes Skis Australia, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:14.7030
18. 81. Chris Perini – GWR/991Racing, Radical SR3RSX – 2:14.8450
19. 25. Nick Karnaros – Earth Electrical, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:15.4960
20. 75. Deitz/McConville – Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi R8 LMS GT3 ultra – 2:19.5780
21. 80. Paul Braico – GWR, Radical SR3RS – 2:19.7480
22. 34. Stephen Champion – GWR/Champion’s Bus. Growth Adv. Radical SR3RS – 2:21.1550
23. 87. David Greig – Daikin, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:21.4300
24. 64. Joseph Ensabella – Aaron Laboratories, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:26.5680
25. 17. Sebastian Lip – The Bend Motorsport Park, Radical SR3RS – 2:29.7790
26. 16. Victor Zagame – Zagame’s, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – NTR

SESSION 3 TIMES:

1. 888. Shane van Gisbergen – Triple Eight Race Eng. Mercedes AMG GT3 EVO – 2:01.5220
2. 59. Ben Barnicoat – 59Racing, McLaren 720S GT3 – 2:02.6490
3. 2. Christopher Mies – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:03.0660
4. 33. Vince Muriti/Luke Youlden – Perfect Auto Body, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:03.2890
5. 1. Garth Tander – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:03.4810
6. 129. Liam Talbot – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Lamborghini Huracan GT3 – 2:04.9690
7. 777. Yasser Shahin – The Bend Motorsport Park, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:06.0390
8. 120. Adam Hargraves – Local Search, MARC II Mustang – 2:06.2410
9. 7. Tony Quinn – Local Legends, Aston Martin Vantage GT3 – 2:06.4580
10. 69. James Koundouris – Supabarn, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:06.6990
11. 96. Kurt Kostecki – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:06.9240
12. 77. Dean Grant – Urban Alley Brewery, BMW M6 GT3 – 2:07.3110
13. 295. Geoff Taunton – Taunton Excavations, MARC II Mustang – 2:07.6780
14. 19. Mark Griffith – Daimler Trucks Newcastle, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:08.0920
15. 74. Jason Miller – Stokes Skis Australia, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:12.2640
16. 25. Nick Karnaros – Earth Electrical, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:12.5580
17. 31. Peter Paddon – First Focus, Radical SR3RS – 2:12.6870
18. 80. Paul Braico – GWR, Radical SR3RS – 2:15.0780
19. 87. David Greig – Daikin, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:16.0010
20. 34. Stephen Champion – GWR/Champion’s Bus. Growth Adv. Radical SR3RS – 2:16.4460
21. 16. Victor Zagame – Zagame’s, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:20.1450
22. 17. Sebastian Lip – The Bend Motorsport Park, Radical SR3RS – 2:38.7300
23. 75. Deitz/McConville – Melbourne Performance Centre, Audi R8 LMS GT3 ultra – NTR

SESSION 4 TIMES (Unrestricted):

1. 59. Ben Barnicoat – 59Racing, McLaren 720S GT3 – 2:00.5640
2. 888. Shane van Gisbergen – Triple Eight Race Eng. Mercedes AMG GT3 EVO – 2:03.8790
3. 2. Christopher Mies – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:04.0710
4. 1. Garth Tander – Valvoline, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:04.1630
5. 777. Yasser Shahin – The Bend Motorsport Park, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:05.8500
6. 77. Dean Grant – Urban Alley Brewery, BMW M6 GT3 – 2:06.1060
7. 96. Brett Hobson/Kurt Kostecki – Hobson Motorsport, Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 – 2:06.1920
8. 7. Tony Quinn – Local Legends, Aston Martin Vantage GT3 – 2:08.9060
9. 19. Mark Griffith – Daimler Trucks Newcastle, Mercedes AMG GT3 – 2:10.3320
10. 69. James Koundouris – Supabarn, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:11.8040
11. 33. Vince Muriti – Perfect Auto Body, Audi R8 LMS GT3 EVO – 2:12.0260
12. 120. Adam Hargraves – Local Search, MARC II Mustang – 2:12.6130
13. 129. Liam Talbot – Haemokinesis/Trofeo Estate, Lamborghini Huracan GT3 – 2:12.8610
14. 295. Geoff Taunton – Taunton Excavations, MARC II Mustang – 2:13.5690
15. 74. Jason Miller – Stokes Skis Australia, Porsche Type 997 GT3 Cup Car – 2:14.0670
16. 25. Nick Karnaros – Earth Electrical, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:14.9020
17. 87. David Greig – Daikin, Porsche Type 991 GT3 Cup Car – 2:17.9250
18. 16. Victor Zagame – Zagame’s, Audi R8 LMS GT3 – 2:26.5080

Featured image courtesy of AGT