Jamie Whincup and Scott McLaughlin will share the poles for this afternoon’s final two races around Sydney Motorsport Park on Supercars first return to action since lockdown.
Whincup, who celebrates his 500th career race this afternoon, edged home teammate Van Gisbergen by a mere 0.0120s in the opening 15-minute session to snare pole position for race 8.
Meanwhile, points leader McLaughlin claimed a record breaking eighth career pole around the Sydney venue and will head the field for the day’s final 130km sprint race.
It wasn’t entirely smooth sailing for Whincup however, as he bowled a wide at the turn 2 hairpin on his first flying lap, losing valuable time on a rapid Van Gisbergen.
The track continued to rubber in and lap times were falling by the minute with Reynolds, Le Brocq and Heimgartner all sharing time at the top of the leaderboard.
The #7 Kelly Racing Mustang put in a storming 1.29.0161 to head the field, three seconds faster than the likes of the Red Bull duo.
The constant evolvement of the track set up an interesting final few minutes with Penrite Racing opting to hold back its two drivers so as to ensure they would cross the line last.
Championship leader McLaughlin set the first time before immediately being demoted by the familiar suspects of Whincup and Van Gisbergen.
At the chequered flag no one could match Whincup’s final time of a 1.28.0756 as he leads a Red Bull one-two.
Fabian Coulthard gave DJR stablemate McLaughlin a run for his money but would ultimately settle for fourth in an all Shell V-Power second row.
Cam Waters, Nick Percat, Chaz Mostert, Le Brocq, Heimgartner and Reynolds made up the rest of the top 10 for this afternoon’s first race.
The second 15-minute session saw several drivers adapt to the changing track conditions and decided to save their Dunlop tyres for a last gasp lap.
After ten minutes Reynolds had set the sole representative lap time with a 1.28.5634 before Todd Hazelwood usurped the #9 Commodore to head the time sheets momentarily a few minutes later.
A quiet pitlane sprung into life as the clock neared its last five minutes as every driver set about to lay down their final times.
McLaughlin laid down an ultra-competitive 1.27.9193 to take provisional pole as the Red Bull duo failed to better yesterday’s race winners time. Whincup will start alongside McLaughlin on the front row with Van Gisbergen settling for third.
A hard-charging Lee Holdsworth claimed a well deserved fourth ahead of a surprised Hazelwood.
Coulthard couldn’t match his first session time and ultimately settled for seventh, spliting Waters and Percat.
Reynolds and Bryce Fullwood rounded out the Top 10 in his best result of the year.