Will Brown will be the last driver to set a lap in tomorrow’s Bathurst 1000 shootout, scoring provisional pole in Friday’s qualifying session.
Brown was the first driver this weekend to eclipse the 2.04 bracket. The Erebus driver stopped the clock at 2.03.898.
Though he wasn’t the only one. The top three cars: Brown, Anton De Pasquale and Chaz Mostert, were separated by seven hundredths of a second.
“Did that just happen?” Brown said over the team radio moments after the lap.
Less than a month ago, Brown won his first Supercars race in Sydney. The kid has been riding a wave of confidence since.
Brown posted his quickest marker on his final flying lap, taking advantage of the coolest and fastest track conditions.
“I grew some balls out there,” Brown said. “That was bloody awesome. To do a 2.03 around here, I didn’t care if I got pole or not, that’s a pretty wicked time.”
De Pasquale will be the last car before Brown in the shootout, narrowly falling shy of the polesitter in the final sector.
“It’s always so hard around here,” he said. “You push so hard, and you’ve still got a long weekend ahead, so those walls are still pretty close.”
Tim Slade was the last driver to lock in a place in the shootout, surging to fourth at the death. In doing so, Slade knocked out seven-time series champion Jamie Whincup.
Whincup starts 11th for his final Supercars race.
“Not ideal,” Whincup said. “Plenty of excuses. We didn’t get the green runs in in practice, so they’re a good opportunity to get up to speed. That probably hurt us.
“Disappointed with that but what more can you do.”
Cameron Waters qualified a provisional fifth. The Tickford driver led a fair chunk of the session but couldn’t break into the 2.03s.
Brodie Kostecki is sixth and could have been a tad higher. The second Erebus driver made a mistake on the exit of The Chase on what could have been a very competitive time.
Still, he safely secured a spot in the shootout.
Shane van Gisbergen is the lone Red Bull in the top ten and was seventh, ahead of Will Davison.
Nick Percat had a whack at Forrest Elbow but continued on to sneak into the shootout in ninth.
Jack Le Brocq was tenth and is the first driver to set a lap tomorrow evening.
Broc Feeney was a noteworthy 15th in the Supercheap Auto wildcard entry. The Super2 series leader even looked on for a place in the top ten before the big hitters improved in the final moments.
As for the other Kiwis in the field, Andre Heimgartner starts the Great Race from 17th, three places up on Fabian Coulthard in 20th.
At a glance: Top 10 shootout order
- Will Brown
- Anton De Pasquale
- Chaz Mostert
- Tim Slade
- Brodie Kostecki
- Shane van Gisbergen
- Will Davison
- Nick Percat
- Jack Lebrocq
Full qualifying results:
|2||Anton De Pasquale||2:03.921|
|7||Shane van Gisbergen||2:04.227|
|10||Jack Le Brocq||2:04.493|