Bright steals provisional pole at Bathurst

Jason Bright on his way to provisional pole around Mount Panorama

Jason Bright has broken TeamVodafone’s Mount Panorama stronghold by claiming provisional pole position for Sunday’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.

Bright, driving the Trading Post Racing Commodore, set a time of 2m07.0002s, less than a tenth of a second ahead of Bathurst’s new lap record holder Craig Lowndes and his Vodafone team-mate Jamie Whincup.

Bright, who will be partnered by Matt Halliday in the #14 Trading Post entry, set his time with just three minutes of the session remaining.

The final order of the top 10 will be sorted tomorrow afternoon on the tradition Bathurst top 10 shootout.

Bright said that he was surprised to end the day at the top of the timesheets.

“I didn’t expect to be quickest,” he said.

“We were struggling a little bit on greens. I had a crack on greens yesterday, but it wasn’t a qualifying car at all. I was very surpised to be fifth after yesterday’s issues. I didn’t expect to be able to do a low 7s.

“We made a couple of changes during the session, and it just gave us some time.”

Lowndes, who will partnered by Mark Skaife, will be the second last car to attack the shootout tomorrow.

While he could not match his record-breaking lap from the final lap of practice earlier this morning, he was happy to be on the pace.

“Our first outing was on a tyre that did the 2m06s lap on, then we put the second tyre on and we were on a lap that would have been a mid-2m07s,” he said.

“We sat around for a long time and decided to have another run, change the method of our madness. We didn’t get the best out of the first sector – the second and third sector started to come on string, so that gives us something to think about.

“The top 10 is one lap, and we need a car that comes out of the block, heat the tyres up as good as you can, and once you come out of turn one, you need a good feel, a good sense as a driver.”

Behind Lowndes is Jamie Whincup and Steve Owen, ahead of the consistent Orrcon Steel Ford Performance Racing Falcon of Mark Winterbottom.

Behind Winterbottom is Lee Holdsworth (Fujitsu Racing), James Courtney (Jim Beam Racing) and the Toll Holden Racing Team duo of Will Davison and Garth Tander.

Bathurst specialist Greg Murphy (Castrol EDGE Racing) was back in usual Bathurst form, taking ninth place ahead of Paul Dumbrell (The Bottle-O Racing).

Just missing out on a shootout birth was Steve Johnson (Jim Beam Racing), Rick Kelly (Jack Daniel’s Racing), Shane van Gisbergen (SP Tools Racing), Steve Richards (Dunlop Super Dealers FPR) and Michael Caruso (Fujitsu Racing).

Damian Assaillit was excluded from the results for a pit lane infringement.

Practice tomorrow will be held at 10am, followed by the top 10 shootout at 1545.

Race 18; V8 Supercars Qualifying; Bathurst
1 14 Jason Bright        2:07.0002*
2 888 Craig Lowndes       2:07.0069
3 1 Jamie Whincup       2:07.3663
5 33 Lee Holdsworth      2:07.4687
6 18 James Courtney      2:07.7278
7 22 Will Davison        2:07.7375
8 2 Garth Tander        2:07.7899
9 51 Greg Murphy         2:07.8646
10 55 Paul Dumbrell       2:07.8717
11 17 Steven Johnson      2:07.9635
12 15 Rick Kelly          2:08.0556
13 9 Shane Van Gisbergen 2:08.0656
14 6 Steven Richards     2:08.1161
15 34 Michael Caruso      2:08.2907
16 39 Russell Ingall      2:08.3541
17 19 Jonathon Webb       2:08.3753
18 4 Alex Davison        2:08.4052
19 11 Jason Bargwanna     2:08.4550
20 3 Tony D’Alberto      2:08.5508
21 24 Fabian Coulthard    2:08.6359
22 21 Karl Reindler       2:08.8156
23 12 Dean Fiore          2:08.8886
24 10 Andrew Thompson     2:09.0272
25 47 Tim Slade           2:09.0784
26 30 Nathan Pretty       2:09.1773
27 7 Todd Kelly          2:09.3223
28 16 Tony Ricciardello   2:10.4957
29 44 G.Emery/M.Zukanovic 2:11.5023
EXC 27 Damian Assaillit    –

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