Scott Pye says the failure to convert a maiden pole position has given him extra motivation to claim a breakthrough victory heading into the gruelling final Clipsal 500 leg.
After starting Race 1 from the prime spot, the DJR Team Penske driver was left to rue a missed opportunity when a fumbled pit stop saw a potential victory slip from his grasp.
Pye held second position for the opening 12 laps of the heat after narrowly losing out to Red Bull’s Jamie Whincup at the start.
However, his race unravelled in the pits when the team dropped the car off its jacks before the left-rear wheel was attached.
Pye went on to finish the race in 12th position followed by a seventh place result in Saturday’s second 125km heat.
Having offered a glimpse of DJR Team Penske’s true potential, the South Australian is determined to deliver silverware in the 250km encounter.
“It does (give me fire in the belly),” Pye told Speedcafe.com
“It was a fantastic day for me to get that pole on Friday.
“That race (Race 1) was really disappointing because I thought there was some silverware up for grabs.
“I think we can take a lot of confidence out of it as we know it will be our day. It is just a matter of time.
“I hope wins are not too far away although you can’t rush these things.
“We need to get everything in order and make sure when we do qualify on pole again we don’t make any mistakes and get the win.
“The championship is too close to relax. You have just got to keep working at it.”
Heading into the new season DJR Team Penske were tipped to make significant gains this season as it builds on a challenging first year under majority American ownership.
After just two races of the new season Pye believes the squad is already ahead of its improvement curve.
“I think I’m ahead of where I was expecting to be,” added Pye.
“I’m really confident going forward that podiums are realistic.
“I believe this weekend a podium is still achievable.
“This year I think we are ahead of schedule at the moment, but it doesn’t take much to fall behind again, so we need to keep working hard.”
Today’s 78-lap, 250km Clipsal 500 showpiece is scheduled to begin at 1520 local time.