McLaughlin scorches to fifth straight pole

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 30/07/2017
  • By Stefan Bartholomaeus

Scott McLaughlin scored a fifth straight Armor All Pole Award with a blistering lap in qualifying for Race 16 at the Coates Hire Ipswich SuperSprint.

McLaughlin gradually built up to his ultimate 1:08.42s record across three new tyre runs, clocking 1:08.73s and 1:08.63s during his earlier efforts.

Chaz Mostert moved from third to second on his last run but fell 0.18s short of the Kiwi, who now has 11 poles for the season and 14 consecutive front-row starts.

McLaughlin is the first driver to score five straight poles in the ATCC/Supercars Championship since team co-owner Dick Johnson in 1988.

CLICK HERE for the full Race 16 Qualifying result.

“It’s awesome. Number 11 this year is pretty surreal. I’m living the dream,” said McLaughlin

“I saw the number (lap time) and thought ‘if someone beats that, good on them’.

“Ludo (engineer Lacroix) always tells me there was another tenth somewhere and today it was the first sector.”

Mostert’s effort backed up a second place finish for the Supercheap Ford in yesterday’s race.

“The gap around here is a fair bit so there’s still work to do but I’m pretty happy,” he said.

“The boys are doing everything right at the track, we just need to do a bit more work in the workshop. We know where we need to work hard to find that little bit more.”

Jamie Whincup jumped from fifth to third with his last lap but was also left wide-eyed at the deficit to McLaughlin.

“Today the car is good, we had a good balance… (but) two tenths is a lot, we’re missing something there,” he said.

Fabian Coulthard also improved his time late but dropped from second to fourth ahead of Shane van Gisbergen and Mark Winterbottom.

Craig Lowndes was seventh after finding traffic on his last lap while Nick Percat, Jason Bright and Cameron Waters rounded out a top 10 that featured all four Prodrive Fords.

Todd Kelly was the top Nissan in 12th, while the wildcards were led by debutant Todd Hazelwood who held the fastest third sector prior to McLaughlin’s last lap and ended up 20th.

The 200km Race 16 is scheduled to get underway at 1405 local time.

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