Scott McLaughlin gets DJR’s 100th pole
Scott McLaughlin has qualified on Armor All Pole Position for Race 19 at the Century Batteries Ipswich SuperSprint, Dick Johnson Racing’s 100th in the Supercars Championship.
The points leader denied Jamie Whincup his first pole of 2019 by just over a tenth of a second, while Will Davison missed out on the front row by 0.0032s.
McLaughlin had already clocked a 1:08.6815s to top Part 2 of knockout qualifying in the #17 Shell V-Power Racing Mustang, and started Part 3 with a 1:08.6513s.
Whincup only had one run at the final part of qualifying in the #88 Red Bull HRT ZB Commodore and came up 0.0968s short of McLaughlin, before the Kiwi found another incremental gain to ultimately move the benchmark to 1:08.6369s.
“It’s awesome,” said McLaughlin, who is now also second all-time for poles with 41.
“So proud of everyone. DJ (Dick Johnson) just told me the first one was in Car #17 and the hundredth one is in Car #17 as well.
“Proud for everyone at Shell V-Power Racing, Ford and yeah proud for this guy (Johnson), he’s been through a lot.
“They knew that they were pretty close,” he added regarding the margins to Whincup and Davison, “but we’re in a pretty comfortable window with car and our race set-up that we can go into the race and look after the tyres as well.
“I’m pretty happy, I’m stoked to get that pole with the margin we have.”
Whincup was pleased to improve Car #88 since the morning, when he was 18th in Practice 3.
“Really good effort,” he said.
“We weren’t that happy with the car in Practice 3 and (engineer David) Cauchi made a really good tune just before quali and the car was much better.
“When the car’s better you can drive it better and get more out of it, so a bit of a double banger.”
While McLaughlin has topped each of the four sessions so far this weekend at Queensland Raceway, Davison has finished top three in all of them.
It was his 1:08.7513s in his first run which put the #23 Milwaukee Mustang on the inside of the second row, with Tickford stablemate Lee Holdsworth to join him there in the #5 The Bottle-O Mustang.
Holdsworth lost his first flying lap due to a breach of track limits at Turn 2, but managed a 1:08.9368s on his second run.
Van Gisbergen (#97 ZB Commodore), like team-mate Whincup, stayed in the pits during the first runs before putting in a 1:08.9587s which was good enough for fifth, while Chaz Mostert (#55 Supercheap Auto Mustang) was sixth fastest.
Row 4 is an all-Penrite Racing affair with Anton De Pasquale (#99 ZB Commodore) pipping David Reynolds (#9 ZB Commodore) by 0.0048s.
The top 10 is completed by Fabian Coulthard (#12 DJR Team Penske Mustang) and the fourth Tickford/23Red entry of Cameron Waters (#6 Monster Energy Mustang), the latter of whom came all the way from Part 1 of the three-part session.
Nick Percat was knocked out of the top 10 by De Pasquale’s late move from 13th to ninth in Part 2 of qualifying, and the #8 Hare & Forbes ZB Commodore will share the sixth row of the grid with Todd Hazelwood (#35 Matt Stone Racing ZB Commodore).
Row 7 will be Tim Slade (#14 Freightliner ZB Commodore) and Scott Pye (#2 Mobil 1 Mega ZB Commodore), who, like Percat, came from Part 1.
Slade, Pye, and Waters were already sitting in the top four with one hot lap each on their opening runs in the first stanza, while Andre Heimgartner went for a second lap which knocked Percat back to fifth.
Percat returned the favour by jumping to the top and pushing Heimgartner out of Part 2, the only change to the top four on the second runs.
Mark Winterbottom (#18 Irwin Tools ZB Commodore) also fell just short of advancing and will start 16th, alongside Heimgartner’s #7 Plus Fitness Altima.
James Courtney (#22 Walkinshaw Andretti United ZB Commodore) is two spots further back, with Rick Kelly (#15 Castrol Altima) another big name deep in the field in 21st position.
Race 19 of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, scheduled for 39 laps, is due to start at 1615 local time/AEST.
Results: Armor All Qualifying for Race 19
|1||17||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Scott McLaughlin||Ford Mustang GT||1:08.6369|
|2||88||Red Bull Holden Racing Team||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore ZB||1:08.7481||0:00.1112|
|3||23||Milwaukee Racing||Will Davison||Ford Mustang GT||1:08.7513||0:00.1144|
|4||5||The Bottle-O Racing Team||Lee Holdsworth||Ford Mustang GT||1:08.9368||0:00.2999|
|5||97||Red Bull Holden Racing Team||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore ZB||1:08.9587||0:00.3218|
|6||55||Supercheap Auto Racing||Chaz Mostert||Ford Mustang GT||1:08.9686||0:00.3317|
|7||99||Penrite Racing||Anton De Pasquale||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.0124||0:00.3755|
|8||9||Penrite Racing||David Reynolds||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.0172||0:00.3803|
|9||12||Shell V-Power Racing Team||Fabian Coulthard||Ford Mustang GT||1:09.1667||0:00.5298|
|10||6||Monster Energy Racing Team||Cameron Waters||Ford Mustang GT||1:09.1812||0:00.5443|
|11||8||Hare & Forbes Racing||Nick Percat||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.2465||Part 2|
|12||35||Bigmate Racing||Todd Hazelwood||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.3280||Part 2|
|13||14||Freightliner Racing||Tim Slade||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.4075||Part 2|
|14||2||Mobil 1 MEGA Racing||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.4829||Part 2|
|15||7||Plus Fitness Racing||Andre Heimgartner||Nissan Altima||1:09.3670||Part 1|
|16||18||Irwin Racing||Mark Winterbottom||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.3925||Part 1|
|17||78||Team Harvey Norman||Simona De Silvestro||Nissan Altima||1:09.4319||Part 1|
|18||22||Mobil 1 MEGA Racing||James Courtney||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.4869||Part 1|
|19||3||RABBLE.club Racing||Garry Jacobson||Nissan Altima||1:09.5039||Part 1|
|20||34||Boost Mobile Racing||James Golding||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.5115||Part 1|
|21||15||Castrol Racing||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||1:09.5983||Part 1|
|22||33||Boost Mobile Racing||Michael Caruso||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.6237||Part 1|
|23||21||Team CoolDrive||Macauley Jones||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.6921||Part 1|
|24||19||Truck Assist TEKNO Racing||Jack Le Brocq||Holden Commodore ZB||1:09.8080||Part 1|