Cat Racing star John Bowe's assault on qualifying for round 12 of the V8 Supercar title chase was ruined by traffic at Sandown in Melbourne today. With rain hitting the Melbourne circuit today, officials decided against the usual qualifying...
Cat Racing star John Bowe's assault on qualifying for round 12 of the V8 Supercar title chase was ruined by traffic at Sandown in Melbourne today.
With rain hitting the Melbourne circuit today, officials decided against the usual qualifying method of splitting the field in half for two twenty minute sessions.
Bowe was in the top three for positions for much of the session and actually held pole with ten minutes remaining.
However, with the track starting to dry, Bowe's efforts to improve on his second set of slick tyres was ruined by traffic.
Bowe was held up for two laps by Commodore driver, Paul Morris, and was unable to improve his speed as the times tumbled at the end of the session.
"Unfortunately, the battle out there is so close, even if you are a second a lap faster, you can still be held up by another car," Bowe said.
"To say I am unhappy is a bit of an understatement. I flashed my lights at him but he wouldn't let me through.
"A little bit of courtesy on the road wouldn't go astray.
"In qualifying you have to respect when one of your rivals is on a hot lap."
With the session interupted by a red flag incident, the Cat Racing squad were unable to find out from officials when the session would be completed.
"With time running down, you can normally decide whether to get off the throttle and give yourself some track space to have another go," Bowe said.
"It is certainly very frustrating because we could have had pole position here today. Now things are going to be a lot tougher tomorrow, but we will have to put our head down and charge on."
The result ruined Bowe's almost perfect Sandown qualifying record. In previous sprint race events, Bowe had never qualified outside the top four.
Holden driver Craig Lowndes took pole position ahead of Paul Radisich and Steve Ellery each recording their time in the dying moments of the session.
"Qualifying is so important because the competition is so close," Bowe said.
"Despite today's drama, I am pretty pleased with the car in both the wet and dry conditions.
"I think we should be in a position to have a good run tomorrow, but things now are a lot harder than what they could have been." <pre> QUALIFYING 1. - Lowndes (Holden) - 1:12.489 2. - Radisich (Ford) - 1:12.503 3. - Ellery (Ford) - 1:12.579 4. - Longhurst (Holden) - 1:12.658 5. - Skaife (Holden) - 1:12.738 6. - Ingall (Holden) - 1:12.810 7. - Larkham (Ford) - 1:12.865 8. - Tander (Holden) - 1:12.995 9. - BOWE (CAT FORD) - 1:13.085 10. - Bargwanna (Holden) - 1:13.191
TIMETABLE: SUNDAY, OCTOBER 8th 9.30am - Warm-up 11.30am - Race One - 16 laps 1.30pm - Race Two - 16 laps 3.30pm - Race Three - 16 laps