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Lights up for Supercars stars in Sydney

After three months out of action, Friday’s sampler of night racing at Sydney Motorsport Park has Supercars star Shane Van Gisbergen itching for the championship to resume.

Van Gisbergen’s tilt for a second Supercars crown has been on hold for over 100 days with COVID-19 putting the championship on hiatus since back-to-back events in Townsville in July.

On Friday, the field roared back into action with two half-hour practice runs at Sydney Motorsport Park ahead of this weekend’s Sydney SuperNight event.

The two-day competition is the first of four straight weekends of racing at the venue with Saturday’s 32-lap race to be held under lights.

Van Gisbergen, who was third-fastest behind Ford’s Anton De Pasquale and Red Bull Ampol Racing teammate Jamie Whincup in Friday’s night-time practice session, was clearly impressed by his taste of night driving in a race car.

“It doesn’t feel like full night. It’s too good almost,” the New Zealander told Fox Sports.

“Still, you’re travelling along pretty quick it feels like, but it’s no quicker than earlier.”

While De Pasquale made a fast start to the weekend to put the Red Bull duo on the back foot, Van Gisbergen says a forecast cool change makes it hard to gauge how much Friday’s results will mean on Saturday.

“Tomorrow is going to be completely different,” he said after Friday’s sessions.

“The wind’s a different direction, and we’ll have all different kinds of comments about the car.

“Not reading too much into it.”

Saturday’s action begins with qualifying at 3.35pm before a top 10 shootout for pole position at 4.40pm.

The first race of the weekend then begins at 7.10pm.

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