Big Love crash hands Best Bathurst pole

Dunlop Series
06 Oct
Zak Best sweeps Bathurst poles after Aaron Love crash brings end to qualifying
2 mins by James Pavey
  • Best powers to pole with another record lap at Mount Panorama

  • Qualifying declared early after Friday winner Love crashes heavily

  • Best set to share front row with Allen again, as McLeod scores Super3 pole

A big crash for Friday winner Aaron Love has helped Zak Best secure a dominant ARMOR ALL Pole Position for the Dunlop Series finale in Bathurst.

Super2 points leader Best powered to a 2:04.7025s to put nearly 0.6s on his record set in Friday qualifying, a 2:05.2863s.

Love was second on the time sheets before he crashed heavily at Reid Park, with the impact ripping the front left wheel out of the Petronas Ford.

The Race 1 victor brought his damaged Mustang to a halt around Sulman Park, and with three minutes remaining on the clock, the session was declared.

With Love triggering the red flag, the #78 Ford lost its fastest time and demoted the West Aussie driver to 25th and last. However, given the damage, Love is unlikely to start the race.

It promoted Kai Allen to second on the grid, with Best and Allen — who are first and second in the points — sharing the front row for the second time in as many days.

Love suffers big shunt at Reid Park

Earlier, Cameron McLeod soared to his ninth Super3 pole in 10 attempts this season after a thrilling battle with points leader Jobe Stewart.

McLeod led Stewart by 0.05s before the latter went ahead by 0.02s. McLeod turned up the wick and scored provisional pole by 0.2s, before improving to a 2:06.4159s to seal top spot and 10th overall for Saturday afternoon's race.

Super2 drivers hit the track and Best was straight onto it, powering to a 2:04.7025s. Love, who will also race in Sunday's Repco Bathurst 1000, clocked a 2:04.9360s to also go underneath Best's Friday benchmark.

Love, however, went on with it and suffered a big accident going across the top of the Mountain. The crash brought the session to a close, given the close proximity to Supercars practice and the damage strewn around the track.

Allen's 2:05.4056s was a whopping 0.7s down on Best, with Ryan Wood and Zane Morse the only other drivers within one second of the #17 Anderson Motorsport Ford.

Ironically, Wood and Morse will share the second row, having been caught up in first lap drama on Friday, resulting in DNFs.

Brad Vaughan and Zach Bates will share the third row, with Cooper Murray seventh aboard his repaired Eggleston Holden after his late race crash on Friday while running third.

Nash Morris and rookie Aaron Cameron, who was a standout sixth in Friday's race, qualified eighth and ninth ahead of McLeod.

Saturday's 18-lap Race 2 will commence at 3:55pm AEDT.

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