Will Davison has qualified on pole for this afternoon’s Race 16 at Hidden Valley Raceway, with championship leader Shane Van Gisbergen only managing to qualify his Red Bull Racing Commodore fourth.
Davison’s lap broke the previous lap record in Darwin, and he was the only driver to go under 1.05. It will be a second row lockout for New Zealand, with Andre Heimgartner putting his Brad Jones Commodore third.
Ahead of the two kiwis is Van Gisbergen’s closest championship contender, Anton de Pasquale, and Davison. Fellow kiwi Chris Pither will start the race 11th, narrowly missing the Top 10 Shootout by .04 of a second.
The 30 degree heat proved no issue for the drivers, with the only incident of note being Jake Kostecki running into the outfield during his first ever run in a Top 10 Shootout. Braking too late at the end of the main straight, where drivers average 270km/h, cost Kostecki as he went off at turn one and failed to set a time.
The first 10 minutes of elimination qualifying were tight, with the entire field separated by less than a second. Lee Holdsworth and Tim Slade were the shock eliminations, with Holdsworth qualifying his Penrite Mustang 26th, and Slade putting his CoolDrive Mustang 24th for Race 16.
The Top 10 Shootout lineup was decided after the second 10 minutes, and saw third place Cam Waters failing to qualify, the only driver currently in the top five of the championship failing to do so. Kiwis Heimgartner and Van Gisbergen were the top two of the session respectively, giving them the last two runs of the following shootout.
The highest points scorer across the weekend will be awarded the Merlin Darwin Triple Crown trophy, starting with this afternoon’s Race 16.
Race 16 starts at 5.55pm and can be viewed in New Zealand on Sky Sport 5, or supercars.com or Youtube with a Super Pass subscription
Grid Top 10- Race 16
Pole– Will Davison: 1.04.954
2nd– Anton De Pasquale: 1.05.236
3rd– Andre Heimgartner: 1.05.267
4th– Shane Van Gisbergen: 1.05.292
5th– Mark Winterbottom: 1.05.352
6th– Chaz Mostert: 1.05.468
7th– David Reynolds: 1.05.481
8th– Bryce Fullwood: 1.05.770
9th– Scott Pye: 1.05.794
10th– Jake Kostecki: No time set