Paul Dumbrell has handed Todd Hazelwood a significant leg-up in the Dunlop Super2 Series title battle after crashing out of qualifying in Newcastle.
Dumbrell, who had failed to pull up the #88 Eggleston Motorsport VF Commodore at Turn 1 on multiple occasions during Friday practice, locked up and slid into the tyre wall early in the session.
While the series leader drove away from the scene, the red flags were still flown, meaning that Dumbrell lost his best lap time and took no further part in the session.
Having toured the run-off at the top of Watt Street on his first flying lap, Dumbrell’s penalty locked him into last position on the 22-car grid.
“I just had a few issues with rear locking and it just caught me out there,” Dumbrell explained.
“In hindsight I should have gone down the escape road and just come back and put a green tyre on but I didn’t.
“Obviously it makes our championship very hard today.
“It’s the same for everyone, I’ve just done a bad job today.”
Bathurst 250 winner Macauley Jones (#14 Brad Jones Racing VF Commodore) had sat atop the timesheets when the session was neutralised in the sixth of 15 minutes.
Anton de Pasquale and then Dumbrell’s team-mate Will Brown went faster upon the restart, the latter of whom also run off at Turn 1 immediately after.
Hazelwood then went and laid down a 1:11.1469s which proved to be good enough for Armor All Pole Position.
Jack Le Brocq (#28 MW Motorsport Altima) came closest, but couldn’t piece together a whole lap which left him less than a tenth of a second short and starting on the outside of the front row.
Garry Jacobson (#1 Prodrive Racing Australia FGX Falcon), who nearly became involved in Dumbrell’s error himself, briefly held second late in the session but was bumped back a spot by Le Brocq.
Brown (#38 VF Commodore) will join him on the second row, with MW Motorsport team-mates Bryce Fullwood (#16 Altima) and Shae Davies (#26 Altima) off Row 3.
Richard Muscat, Macauley Jones, Anton de Pasquale, and Nathan Morcom round out the top 10, with Jack Perkins 11th.
With Hazelwood trailing Dumbrell by 49 points, a win for the South Australian native would move him into the series lead if Dumbrell finishes worse than sixth.
Race 1 (20 laps) starts at 1435 local time/AEDT.
Results: Armor All Qualifying for Race 1
|1||Bigmate Racing||Todd Hazelwood||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.1469R|
|2||GoGetta Racing/ MWM||Jack Le Brocq||Nissan Altima||1:11.2433r||0.0964|
|3||MEGA Fules Racing||Garry Jacobson||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:11.3402||0.1933|
|4||Eggleston Motorsport||William Brown||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.3934||0.2465|
|5||Middys Electrical / MWM||Bryce Fullwood||Nissan Altima||1:11.5322||0.3853|
|6||LOCO Energy Drink / MWM||Shae Davies||Nissan Altima||1:11.5551||0.4082|
|7||Wilson Security PAYCE GRM||Richard Muscat||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.6392||0.4923|
|8||PAYCE||Macauley Jones||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.6451||0.4982|
|9||Paul Morris Motorsports||Anton de Pasquale||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:11.6886||0.5417|
|10||Eggleston Motorsport||Nathan Morcom||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.8008||0.6539|
|11||Titan Tray||Jack Perkins||Holden Commodore VF||1:11.9110||0.7641|
|12||Sprint Cutting Racing||Brodie Kostecki||Ford Falcon FG||1:11.9737||0.8268|
|13||Auto One Racing||Adam Marjoram||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.0675||0.9206|
|14||Arcoplate Racing||Kurt Kostecki||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.2228||1.0759|
|15||Alliance Truck Parts||Andrew Jones||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.3642||1.2173|
|16||Joss / Caltex||Jordan Boys||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.4635||1.3166|
|17||Wynns||Josh Kean||Ford Falcon FG/X||1:12.5519||1.4050|
|18||SCT Logistics||Jack Smith||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.7497||1.6028|
|19||Wilson Security PAYCE GRM||Mason Barbera||Holden Commodore VF||1:12.9347||1.7878|
|20||Auto 1 Albury||Matthew Chahda||Holden Commodore VF||1:13.6752||2.5283|
|21||STR Truck Bodies & Trailers||Matthew Palmer||Ford Falcon FG||1:14.9431||3.7962|
|22||Eggleston Motorsport||Paul Dumbrell||Holden Commodore VF||1:20.8257||9.6788|