Brown takes provisional pole at Bathurst, Whincup misses shootout

Will Brown

Erebus Motorsport’s Will Brown is the provisional pole-sitter for the 2021 Repco Bathurst 1000, while Jamie Whincup will take no part in the Top 10 Shootout.

Brown was one of three drivers to break into the ‘threes’ in the 40-minute Qualifying session, wheeling the #9 Shaw And Partners ZB Commodore to a 2:03.8989s on his last flying lap.

The Shell V-Power Racing Team’s Anton De Pasquale and Walkinshaw Andretti United’s Chaz Mostert ended up second and third respectively, while Tim Slade knocked Whincup out of the top 10 when he went fourth with the chequered flag out.

Whincup/Craig Lowndes are thus locked into starting 11th in the #88 ZB Commodore, while Red Bull Ampol Racing team-mate Shane van Gisbergen is provisionally seventh on the grid.

Both Erebus cars, both Dick Johnson Racing cars, and two of the three Tickford Racing entries got into the one-lap dash, including last year’s pole-sitter Cameron Waters in fifth.

Rounding out the top 10 were Brodie Kostecki, van Gisbergen, Will Davison, Brad Jones Racing’s Nick Percat, and Jack Le Brocq.

Erebus was immediately on the pace, Brown setting a 2:04.9597s which was more than four tenths quicker than anyone else until team-mate Brodie Kostecki (#99 Boost Mobile ZB Commodore) came through to notch up a 2:04.8856s.

Van Gisbergen was only ninth after those initial flyers, but then took over first position with a 2:04.2953s on his second run in the #888 ZB Commodore.

Brodie Kostecki improved to a 2:04.4868s to be second-fastest at the halfway mark, from Mostert (#25 Mobil 1 Appliances Online ZB Commodore) on a 2:04.5092s and Tickford’s Waters (#6 Monster Energy Mustang) on a 2:04.6416s.

Waters was on top when he clocked a 2:04.2035s on his third run despite a moment at Murray’s Corner, before Mostert rolled out a 2:04.0504s.

That put the 2014 Bathurst 1000 winner on top with just the final runs to come, from Waters, van Gisbergen, and De Pasquale, who had been lowly placed in the early stages but seemingly have not taken green tyres.

Once he had a couple of runs of new rubber, he had taken the #11 Mustang to a 2:04.3297s, with Brodie Kostecki fifth after a third-run error at The Chase when he looked on to move to second spot.

Brown was 10th before he went for a slightly early final run, wheeling the #9 ZB Commodore to the first ‘three’ of the weekend, a 2:03.8989s.

The big guns were all still to come, and while some got very close, none could knock the rookie off his perch.

Mostert, typically one of the fastest across the top, was slower in Sector 2 on his final flyer but still went into a provisional second position on a 2:03.9770s.

He was relegated one spot when De Pasquale then set a 2:03.9218s, and while Waters had no improvement on his final run, he was safely into the shootout.

Percat, who had glanced the wall exiting Forrest’s Elbow earlier in the session, then helped his cause by creeping up from 10th to eighth with a 2:04.4421s with the chequered flag out.

WAU’s Bryce Fullwood (#2 Mobil 1 Middy’s ZB Commodore) was then briefly up to 10th with a 2:04.5555s, but was virtually straight back out of the one-lap dash thanks to Le Brocq’s (#5 Truck Assist Mustang) 2:04.4933s.

The Tickford driver’s lap also put Whincup on the bubble, as Slade was setting personal-best sectors.

The Blanchard Racing Team driver not only knocked the four-time Great Race winner out of the shootout, but jumped to fourth with a 2:04.1540s.

That left Whincup 11th after his final qualifying session as a full-time driver and Fullwood 12th, from Team 18 duo Scott Pye (#20 DeWalt ZB Commodore) and Mark Winterbottom (#18 Irwin Tools ZB Commodore).

Wildcard Broc Feeney put Triple Eight Race Engineering’s #39 Supercheap Auto ZB Commodore into 15th, from Tickford’s James Courtney (#44 Boost Mobile Mustang).

The session ran uninterrupted, although it ended with Team Sydney’s Garry Jacobson stuck in the gravel at Murray’s Corner.

Either of Jacobson or co-driver Dylan O’Keeffe are set to start at the back of the 25-cat field in the #22 Muscle Car Warehouse ZB Commodore.

The Top 10 Shootout takes place late tomorrow afternoon, but only after two more practice sessions, the next of which is for the co-drivers only from 10:15 local time/AEDT.

Results: Qualifying, Repco Bathurst 1000

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver(s) Car Fastest lap Split
1 9 Erebus Motorsport William Brown Holden Commodore ZB 2:03.8989  
2 11 Shell V-Power Racing Team Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 2:03.9218 0:00.0229
3 25 Mobil 1 Appliances Online Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 2:03.9770 0:00.0781
4 3 CoolDrive Racing Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 2:04.1540 0:00.2551
5 6 Monster Energy Racing Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 2:04.2035 0:00.3046
6 99 Erebus Boost Mobile Racing Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.2201 0:00.3212
7 888 Red Bull Ampol Racing Team Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.2278 0:00.3289
8 17 Shell V-Power Racing Team Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 2:04.3078 0:00.4089
9 8 R&J Batteries Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.4421 0:00.5432
10 5 Truck Assist Racing Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 2:04.4933 0:00.5944
11 88 Red Bull Ampol Racing Team Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.5158 0:00.6169
12 2 Mobil 1 Middy’s Racing Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.5555 0:00.6566
13 20 DEWALT Racing Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.7273 0:00.8284
14 18 IRWIN Racing Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.7927 0:00.8938
15 39 Supercheap Auto Racing Broc Feeney Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.8273 0:00.9284
16 44 Boost Mobile Racing James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 2:04.9024 0:01.0035
17 7 NED Whisky Racing Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 2:04.9394 0:01.0405
18 14 Brad Jones Racing Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 2:04.9698 0:01.0709
19 26 Penrite Racing David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 2:05.0818 0:01.1829
20 19 Local Legends Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.1458 0:01.2469
21 34 UNIT Racing Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.3350 0:01.4361
22 96 Coca-Cola Racing Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.5207 0:01.6218
23 35 Yellow Cover Racing Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.6649 0:01.7660
24 4 SCT Logistics Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.8671 0:01.9682
25 22 Team SYDNEY Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 2:05.9305 0:02.0316

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