Craig Lowndes will be the last man out in this afternoon’s Top 10 Shootout after topping an extraordinarily close qualifying session on the streets of Adelaide.
Lowndes’ best early time of 1:20.8731s was matched to all four decimal places by Shane van Gisbergen as the chequered flag fell – with the Red Bull Holden driver keeping the top spot on the account of having set the time first.
Lowndes had elected not to return to the track for the final six minutes following a lengthy red flag delay caused by Maro Engel’s Mercedes expiring at Turn 4.
Despite the Mercedes having dropped coolant throughout the opening four corners, several drivers managed to improve in the closing stages, with Jamie Whincup, Will Davison and Fabian Coulthard securing third through fifth respectively on their last laps.
Scott McLaughlin, Alexandre Premat, Mark Winterbottom, Jonathon Webb and James Courtney complete the Top 10 Shootout field.
Scott Pye missed out on the top 10 by just one place after an impressive performance on debut as a full-time driver.
Michael Caruso was the best of the Nissans in 13th and will share the seventh row with team-mate James Moffat. All four Altimas in the field managed to lap within a second of pole.
The best of the Erebus Mercedes entries, Lee Holdsworth and Tim Slade, are back on row 12, while Engel will start from the rear after his issues.
The biggest scalp of the interrupted session was Garth Tander, who had been mired down in 18th when the red flags were thrown. He will start 18th, despite improving his time on his final lap.
See below for the full Qualifying result
|1||Red Bull Racing Australia||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||1:20.8731|
|2||TEKNO Team VIP||Shane Van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||1:20.8731||0:00.0000|
|3||Red Bull Racing Australia||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||1:20.8892||0:00.0161|
|4||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||Will Davison||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.0594||0:00.1863|
|5||Lockwood Racing||Fabian Coulthard||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.1496||0:00.2765|
|6||Fujitsu Racing GRM||Scott McLaughlin||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.1865||0:00.3134|
|7||Fujitsu Racing GRM||Alexandre Premat||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.2323||0:00.3592|
|8||Pepsi Max Crew FPR Ford||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.2653||0:00.3922|
|9||Tekno Autosports||Jonathon Webb||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.3006||0:00.4275|
|10||Holden Racing Team||James Courtney||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.3136||0:00.4405|
|11||e`kol Racing||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.5084||0:00.6353|
|12||Supercheap Auto Racing||Russell Ingall||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.6164||0:00.7433|
|13||Norton 360 Racing||Michael Caruso||Nissan Altima||1:21.6701||0:00.7970|
|14||Norton 360 Racing||James Moffat||Nissan Altima||1:21.6903||0:00.8172|
|15||Dodo Insurance Racing||Dean Fiore||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.6930||0:00.8199|
|16||Jeld-wen FPR Ford||Alex Davison||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.7393||0:00.8662|
|17||Jack Daniel’s Racing||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:21.7477||0:00.8746|
|18||Holden Racing Team||Garth Tander||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.7832||0:00.9101|
|19||Jack Daniel’s Racing||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:21.8651||0:00.9920|
|20||Team BOC||Jason Bright||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.8754||0:01.0023|
|21||The Bottle-O FPR Ford||David Reynolds||Ford Falcon FG||1:21.9048||0:01.0317|
|22||Team HIFLEX||Tony D’Alberto||Holden Commodore VF||1:21.9709||0:01.0978|
|23||Irwin Racing||Lee Holdsworth||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:22.1206||0:01.2475|
|24||Heavy Haulage Racing||Tim Slade||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:22.2518||0:01.3787|
|25||Advam||Tim Blanchard||Ford Falcon FG||1:22.2749||0:01.4018|
|26||Wilson Security Racing||David Wall||Holden Commodore VF||1:22.2837||0:01.4106|
|27||Wilson Security Racing||Jonny Reid||Ford Falcon FG||1:22.8720||0:01.9989|
|28||SP Tools Racing||Maro Engel||Mercedes E63 AMG||1:23.2133||0:02.3402|
See below for Speedcafe.com’s Clipsal 500 Adelaide Race Guide