Matthew Payne has clinched pole position for race five of the Castrol Toyota Racing Series, edging Billy Frazer to the top spot in a hotly contested qualifying from Hampton Downs.
Payne was engaged in a back-and-forth tussle with reigning national Formula Ford champion Frazer. The two traded fastest laps over the 15-minute session, with Payne setting the deciding 1.01.057s time after the chequered flag.
Frazer was the fastest driver in both the first and final sector, with Payne squeezing out a strong middle sector which would prove clinical.
Ultimately, the margin between the two was 0.048s.
Kaleb Ngatoa was third quickest, a further half-a-tenth behind Frazer. The polesitter for last weekend’s New Zealand Grand Prix briefly held provisional pole midway through the session but could not topple the front runners.
A pacesetter in yesterday’s practice session, Peter Vodanovich will line-up alongside Ngatoa on the second row. Just under two-tenths separate the top-four ahead of today’s two races.
Given the cold early morning temperatures, the seven-car field spent most of the session getting tyres into the ideal operating window.
Everyone would set their fastest times in the dying stages, including Tom Alexander. His last lap effort of a 1.01.476 was good enough to seal fifth.
Chris Vlok will start sixth, ahead of Conrad Clark who will start from a lonely final row on the grid.
The day’s first race will have its grid determined by each drivers second-fastest lap times. Velocity News will post an updated grid for that race once full lap times are finalised.
Race four of the championship is scheduled to be at 10.55 am, with the final race of the day being at 3.20 pm.
TRS Race 5 grid: