by Michael Teychenne
on 07 October, 2017

 Nissan Motorsport has completed final practice at Mount Panorama, as attention now turns to tomorrow's 161 lap Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

Rick Kelly will lead away the Nissan squad in 12th on the grid. The #15 Sengled Racing driver completed a trouble-free morning practice, as the two-time winner worked through a pit stop and race strategy program.

Michael Caruso lines up just behind Kelly in 13th. Wearing a BIG4 livery for the round, the #23 Nissan NISMO entry made contact with the turn one wall in today's practice. The team was able to repair the damage and Caruso then went on to record his fastest lap of the session.

Todd Kelly will begin his 20th Bathurst 1000 when the clock strikes 11:10am tomorrow morning. The #20 carsales Racing driver will start from 15th as he pairs up with Jack Le Brocq. The young gun is in strong form after claiming second place in today's Super2 race around the 6.2km circuit.

Simona De Silvestro qualified over 3 seconds quicker than her attempt last year, as the #78 Team Harvey Norman driver will line up 23rd on the grid. In 2016 De Silvestro finished 14th, and now paired with David Russell, the Swiss driver will aim to improve on that result.

Check out Scott Sinclair's summary below on how the team approaches the most significant day in Australian motorsport.



Scott Sinclair
Nissan Motorsport Team Manager

"Our day starts with a team meeting at 6am where we’ll detail the plan for the morning. We’ll run through a few key points and make sure everyone is across the program for the warm-up. The guys will then do their standard preparation which will take about 90 minutes.
"The engineering meeting at 7:15am will detail the plan for every car across every lap in the warm-up. Anything that the guys want to try in the warm-up, we’ll detail then. You don’t want to be at the point where you’re trying things in the warm-up. It really is just a systems check. We’ll also do a couple of pit stops for the crew to get their eye in and a few laps for each of the drivers. It’s only 20 minutes, so it’s just a case of getting everyone’s head in the game.
"Assuming a clean warm up, the time between the warm-up and the race is the calmest for the entire weekend. We'll get all the spares out and set up in the garage before we go tonight. So the morning is pretty straightforward.
"We had a strategy meeting earlier today, and we feel comfortable with the approach we have for a dry race. If it becomes wet, then we just have to stay on our toes and react to the changing conditions. You’d like to put strategies in place to deal with every scenario, but the reality is you simply can’t. You can’t predict how much rain there will be. Quite often you get caught out on a drying track, but you need to make a fuel window.There are all those things that you can’t plan and have to do on the fly."
"If the cars are on different strategies then there will be a pit stop every 20 minutes. In other sports, like cricket, there is downtime in-between play. In that regard, it's similar for our mechanics. The guys have been on their feet all weekend. The race provides the first opportunity to grab a seat. For the engineers is it constant. They’ll keep an eye on tyres, the weather and dealing with strategy. So it is a big day for everyone.
"The intensity of the pack up depends on how your day went. If you’ve had a bad day, everyone is really keen to get out. But if you’ve had a good result then everyone takes their time and enjoys it. If the race finishes at 5:30pm, we’ll aim to finish by 9:30pm. Hopefullywe’ll have trophies to pack away in the truck too."