Will Davison has been stripped of ARMOR ALL Pole Position after he was deemed to have blocked James Courtney in qualifying, though the TEKNO driver says he didn’t see the fast-approaching Holden Racing Team car.
Davison was in the way of the #22 on its hot lap, after the Commodore was released earlier in qualifying to have a go for pole.
TEKNO driver and yesterday’s third place finisher Davison was surprised by the penalty, claiming he could not see the HRT Commodore and was not informed of a car on a hot lap.
He initially thought it was “mad” to get a penalty, but after seeing the replay, said: “I don’t feel anything because I didn’t know he was there – I had no idea he was there.
“The last time I looked in the mirror I had three cars that had come out of the pits behind me vey slowly, so I can’t even comment. I had no idea James was there.
“We got pole, we had the fastest car, so really happy with the lap I did.
“Worked so hard to get another pole position and something so silly like that – there was no blocking on my behalf, I had no idea he was there.
“I didn’t know he was on a lap as simple as that.”
The two drivers had an explosive run-in at the circuit last year when Courtney tapped Davison at the hairpin – though the move was ruled acceptable by the Stewards.
But after the session Courtney didn’t have an issue with Davison – he was more concerned about the car’s performance after finishing the session 19th. HRT teammate Garth Tander was 18th.
“It didn’t really cost us much – it’s embarrassing really, the car’s nowhere near it should be,” Courtney said.
“We were just wobbling around at the back, so we’ve got a lot of work to do to find out what’s going on.
“Something in the rear just isn’t gelling the car with the front, so it’s a bit puzzling as to what is going on. We had a really big swing at it then to sort it out but obviously we didn’t get it right.”
It was reported on the television coverage major changes had been made to Courtney’s car overnight.
Davison wouldn’t comment on whether the penalty was fair or not.
“We’ll see. I don’t know. It is what it is,” he said.
“If I knew there was a car coming at 200km an hour you’d stay out of the way, wouldn’t you?
“I looked in the mirror and I assumed – normally everyone goes out together. That was the last info I had – all good, everyone’s in a train … nothing more to say, I didn’t know he was there.”
Davison starts from third with Mark Winterbottom and Shane van Gisbergen sharing the front row for this afternoon’s race. Winterbottom said it was the easiest $1000 he’d ever earned as he was presented the ARMOR ALL Pole cheque in “weird” circumstances.