Jamie Whincup and Scott McLaughlin will share the front row for both of Saturday’s sprint races at the V8 Supercars Championship’s visit to Phillip Island.
Race 31 Qualifying: Whincup on pole
The first 10-minute session saw Whincup claim his fifth pole position of the season thanks to a blistering time on his first qualifying run around the high-speed 4.5-kilometre circuit.
The Red Bull Racing Holden driver went out on brand new tyres, banking a 1:31.0854 on his first flying lap, but was unable to lower the effort on his second run on the same tyre set.
McLaughlin came closest in his Polestar GRM Volvo, getting to within nine-hundredths of a second on his second timed run to lock out the front row of the grid.
The season’s three remaining championship contenders, those being Craig Lowndes (Red Bull Racing) and the two Prodrive-run Falcons of David Reynolds and Mark Winterbottom, rounded out the top-five.
Reynolds made an impressive recovery, climbing up from near the bottom of the timesheets on his first run to secure fourth place. By contrast, Winterbottom’s first timed run was ultimately good enough for fifth-fastest.
Tekno Autosports’ Shane van Gisbergen was sixth-fastest ahead of James Courtney (Holden Racing Team).
Scott Pye’s evergreen run of form continued from Pukekohe with another top-ten result in his DJR Team Penske Ford, ahead of the two Nissans of James Moffat and Rick Kelly.
|2015 V8 Supercars WD-40 Phillip Island SuperSprint – Race 31 Qualifying Top-10|
|Pos||Driver||Team / Entry||Time|
|1.||Jamie Whincup||Red Bull Racing / Triple 8||1:31.0854|
|2.||Scott McLaughlin||Polestar GRM Volvo||+ 0.0903|
|3.||Craig Lowndes||Red Bull Racing / Triple 8||+ 0.1195|
|4.||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O Racing Team||+ 0.2430|
|5.||Mark Winterbottom||Prodrive Racing Australia||+ 0.3731|
|6.||Shane van Gisbergen||TEKNO Autosports||+ 0.4215|
|7.||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team||+ 0.4511|
|8.||Scott Pye||DJR Team Penske||+ 0.5605|
|9.||James Moffat||Nissan Motorsport||+ 0.6189|
|10.||Rick Kelly||Nissan Motorsport||+ 0.6794|
Race 32 Qualifying: McLaughlin goes one better
The second qualifying session saw the fastest two qualifers’ results reversed, with McLaughlin getting the upper hand to claim his fourth ArmorAll Pole award of the season.
This time it was the second timed runs which proved decisive, with McLaughlin, Whincup and Lowndes all managing to go quicker than provisional pole-sitter Winterbottom.
Whincup, who blotted his first flying lap with an off-track moment at Lukey Heights, moved ahead of Winterbottom first, before McLaughlin went better by almost the same margin that Whincup had beaten him in the preceding session.
Lowndes claimed P3 for the second race running in his Red Bull Racing Holden, while Winterbottom managed to secure fourth from fellow Ford runners Reynolds and Scott Pye.
The two Nissans of Michael Caruso and Rick Kelly locked out the fourth row of the grid ahead of the two Holdens of James Courtney (HRT) and Fabian Coulthard (Brad Jones Racing).
|2015 V8 Supercars WD-40 Phillip Island SuperSprint – Race 32 Qualifying Top-10|
|Pos||Driver||Team / Entry||Time|
|1.||Scott McLaughlin||Polestar GRM Volvo||1:30.7531|
|2.||Jamie Whincup||Red Bull Racing / Triple 8||+ 0.0898|
|3.||Craig Lowndes||Red Bull Racing / Triple 8||+ 0.1392|
|4.||Mark Winterbottom||Prodrive Racing Australia||+ 0.2124|
|5.||David Reynolds||The Bottle-O Racing Team||+ 0.2285|
|6.||Scott Pye||DJR Team Penske||+ 0.2371|
|7.||Michael Caruso||Nissan Motorsport||+ 0.2532|
|8.||Rick Kelly||Nissan Motorsport||+ 0.3895|
|9.||James Courtney||Holden Racing Team||+ 0.4054|
|10.||Fabian Coulthard||Brad Jones Racing||+ 0.4083|
Saturday’s two 60-kilometre Sprint Races – each held over 14 laps – will get underway at 15:10 and 16:55 today (GMT +11).
Image via Motorsport.com