Whincup claims Bathurst pole

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 08/10/2016
  • By Bruce Newton

Jamie Whincup has claimed pole position for tomorrow’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, after pipping Scott McLaughlin in this evening’s ARMOR ALL Top 10 Shootout by just 0.0652 sec.

The Red Bull Holden Commodore VF driver’s lap was ragged but incredibly fast, brushing the wall at the top of the mountain before stopping the clock at 2 min 05.4263 sec.

“It wasn’t the tidiest lap but she was hooked up on brand new green tyres,” said Whincup, who will go for his first win at Bathurst since 2012 with co-driver Paul Dumbrell.

“There’s this rumour getting around you can’t win from pole, but it’s the best place to start. Tune her up tonight and see how we go tomorrow.”

McLaughlin’s lap was clean and tidy, with only a slight bobble exiting the Chase losing him obvious time in the Wilson Security GRM Volvo S60.

“It’s pole at Bathurst it means everything. Tomorrow’s the main day. Congrats to Jamie, it was a great lap, I just gave it all,” said McLaughlin.

Chaz Mostert made it successfully through his first-ever Bathurst shoot-out to be third fastest in the Supercheap Auto Ford Falcon FG X, while DJR Team Penske’s Fabian Coulthard’s spectacular lap earned him fourth place and locked out row two for the blue oval.

Mostert will start the race from the inside of row two after crashing out of the 2015 event during Friday qualifying.

“It was fantastic to have that whole lap by myself,” said Mostert. “It’s pretty special getting top 10 here.

“Fantastic for Jamie to get pole, he’s been great to watch here over the years.

“Even the marshals on the left hand bend where I initially hit the wall last year were giving me the thumbs up when I did my warm up lap… can’t wait to get back out for the race and enjoy it.”

Brad Jones Racing’s Tim Slade dropped from provisionally third overnight to fifth on the grid after losing time across the top of the mountain.

Nissan’s Michael Caruso was a big winner in the session, moving from 10th to sixth, while behind him came Red Bull’s Shane van Gisbergen, HRT’s Garth Tander, Scott Pye and his Shell V-Power Falcon, while Mark Winterbottom was 10th.

“I’m really proud of the lap, moved up a few spots,” said Caruso. “We’re already thinking about tomorrow and can’t wait to get into it.”

The defending Virgin Australia Supercars champion was the biggest loser in the session, dropping from seventh to 10th fastest after he ran off at the Chase, electing to sacrifice the lap rather than lock and damage a tyre.

Click here for full results from the ARMOR ALL Top 10 Shootout. 

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