De Pasquale grabs provisional pole at Mount Panorama

Anton De Pasquale

Anton De Pasquale has qualified on provisional pole for his first race for Dick Johnson Racing at the Repco Mount Panorama 500.

De Pasquale denied Shane van Gisbergen the final say in this afternoon’s Top 10 Shootout which finalises the grid for Race 1 of the 2021 Supercars Championship by punching out a 2:04.4250s in his #100 Shell V-Power Mustang with the chequered flag flying.

Van Gisbergen improved on his final lap, by a full two tenths of a second, but that was still only enough for a 2:04.5474s which left the Red Bull Ampol Racing driver in second spot.

Cameron Waters claimed third at another 0.0397s back in Tickford Racing’s #6 Monster Energy Mustang, from Chaz Mostert (#25 Mobil 1 Appliances Online ZB Commodore) and Tim Slade (#3 CoolDrive Mustang).

Will Davison and Jamie Whincup ensured that DJR and Triple Eight Race Engineering, respectively, got both of their cars into the one-lap dash, while James Courtney (#44 Boost Mobile Mustang) just missed the top 10 thanks to Slade’s efforts.

Under grey skies it was Waters who was fastest after the first flyers with a 2:05.2949s, 0.1561s up on van Gisbergen.

Waters was shown on timing as shortcutting The Esses next time around, although it was not clear whether he made an error or was simply avoiding traffic given the incident was not captured on television.

Van Gisbergen, on the other hand, completed another lap and moved to the top with a 2:04.7580s in the #97 ZB Commodore which clearly excited his new engineer, David Cauchi.

Red flags flew inside eight minutes into the 20-minute hit-out in response to Nick Percat coming to a halt on Mountain Straight due to an engine problem in the #8 R&J Batteries ZB Commodore.

“Our goal this issue was to have no reliability issues and here we are,” lamented Percat.

“It’s disappointing. I think it’s had an electrical issue so as I came down Conrod it dropped to six cylinders, then four, then three, then shut off and I had battery alarms and no voltage and stuff like that.

“I think they’ve just found a bit of wiring loom that’s [inaudible]…

“The best bit was reversing down [from pit exit into the lane itself], because it’s so steep I got all the way back.”

At that point, van Gisbergen held sway from Waters, Whincup (#88 ZB Commodore), De Pasquale, and Will Brown in a rebuilt #9 Erebus WD-40 ZB Commodore.

Once the session restarted, De Pasquale clocked a 2:04.9071s to go to second, before he was usurped by Mostert’s 2:04.8336s, the 2014 Bathurst 1000 winner’s first representative lap.

Scott Pye then got up to fourth but bailed out of his next lap while personal best to Sector 2 in the #20 DeWalt ZB Commodore, as the penultimate runs came to an end.

With the frantic final minutes to come, van Gisbergen was still quickest, ahead of Mostert, De Pasquale, Pye, Courtney, and Waters, while Whincup had slipped to ninth having made no improvement on his first flyer.

Courtney also cut The Esses on his final run, before van Gisbergen moved the marker to a 2:04.5474s just after the chequered flag was unfurled.

However, De Pasquale had enough to elevate himself from fifth to first with a margin of 0.1224s over the 2020 Bathurst 1000 winner, pushing Waters back to third.

“It was good,” said De Pasquale.

“It’s only like my fifth set of new tyres that we’ve done in this thing and you’re learning, learning, learning.

“We were struggling a bit yesterday but we put in a big effort overnight. The Shell V-Power guys did a good job, the car was a bit more to my liking…

“We sort of chipped away at it and as the session went on we went aggressive with it and here we are.”

Mostert ended up fourth while Slade claimed fifth with one of the later laps, bumping Courtney to 11th.

Brodie Kostecki got as high as third before winding up sixth in the #99 Erebus Boost Mobile ZB Commodore, with the top 10 rounded out by Davison (#17 Mustang), Pye, Whincup, and Mark Winterbottom (#18 Irwin Tools ZB Commodore).

Bryce Fullwood was 12th in the #2 Mobil 1 Middy’s ZB Commodore and David Reynolds 13th in his first qualifying session in the #26 Penrite Mustang.

Brown was 17th all told and Team Sydney’s Fabian Coulthard (#19 Local Legends ZB Commodore) 20th.

The Top 10 Shootout will be held at 12:10 local time/AEDT.

Results: Qualifying for Race 1, Repco Mount Panorama 500

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver Car Fastest lap Split
1 100 Shell V-Power Racing Team Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 2:04.4250  
2 97 Red Bull Ampol Racing Team Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.5474 0:00.1224
3 6 Monster Energy Racing Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 2:04.5871 0:00.1621
4 25 Mobil 1 Appliances Online Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.6687 0:00.2437
5 3 Cooldrive Racing Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 2:04.7380 0:00.3130
6 99 Erebus Boost Mobile Racing Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.8930 0:00.4680
7 17 Shell V-Power Racing Team Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 2:04.9250 0:00.5000
8 20 DEWALT Racing Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.0749 0:00.6499
9 88 Red Bull Ampol Racing Team Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.0806 0:00.6556
10 18 IRWIN Racing Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.1255 0:00.7005
11 44 Boost Mobile Racing James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 2:05.1398 0:00.7148
12 2 Mobil 1 Middy’s Racing Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.1438 0:00.7188
13 26 Penrite Racing David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 2:05.1581 0:00.7331
14 7 NED Whisky Racing Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 2:05.2337 0:00.8087
15 5 Truck Assist Racing Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 2:05.3869 0:00.9619
16 14 Brad Jones Racing Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.4040 0:00.9790
17 9 Erebus WD-40 Racing William Brown Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.4340 0:01.0090
18 35 Yellow Cover Racing Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.7959 0:01.3709
19 22 Team SYDNEY Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.7979 0:01.3729
20 19 Local Legends Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.9027 0:01.4777
21 96 Brad Jones Racing Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 2:06.2114 0:01.7864
22 4 SCT Motor Sports Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 2:06.8882 0:02.4632
23 34 UNIT Racing Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2:07.2504 0:02.8254
24 8 R&J Batteries Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB    

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