Whincup blitzes second Supercars practice

Oliver Caffrey
Jamie Whincup (pic) has finished ahead of Scott McLaughlin in Supercars practice at Phillip Island

Seven-time Supercars champion Jamie Whincup has responded from a poor morning session to take out second practice at Phillip Island.

The Red Bull ace finished 17th in Friday's first practice when fellow Holden driver James Courtney came out in front, as early fog blanketed the regional Victorian venue.

Drivers had to wait 30 minutes for practice two after the session was delayed because of a crash in a support category.

Once they were out on the track, Whincup set a hot early pace with a best lap of 1:29.9856s and never looked like relinquishing his advantage.

Supercars' most-decorated driver was happy with his car, looking to add to victories already this season in Melbourne and at Symmons Plains in Tasmania.

"We've been thereabouts in the last few rounds but we need to push a bit harder.

"Those Penske cars are quick so we're going to have to work hard to get pole."

The practice went in order of the top two in the championship standings, with Scott McLaughlin placing second in both sessions.

The Shell V-Power driver suffered a tyre puncture in the first practice but still did enough to only be shaded by Courtney.

McLaughlin took a while to get going in the afternoon, but the 24-year-old stormed past rivals to show his determination to make amends for his efforts last year at Phillip Island.

The New Zealand ace had pole position for both 2017 races, only for Fabian Coulthard and Chaz Mostert to come out on top when tyre troubles plagued him.

He wasn't alone having to cope with tyre failures, as they marred last year's opening race, forcing him to hold back on day two when Mostert broke a three-year drought for a race victory.

The Supercars Commission even met before the second race to enforce changes to prevent further issues.

But McLaughlin said the demons of 2017 wouldn't haunt him.

"I felt it when it was going (in practice) and you're always trying to push that maximum like last year, but a couple of idiots just blew one up today," McLaughlin said.

The first 250km race begins at 3.45pm on Saturday, preceded by qualifying from 12.05pm.