ASTC: Queensland Qualifying

BOC GASES AUSTRALIAN SUPER TOURING CHAMPIONSHIP - ROUND 6 QUEENSLAND RACEWAY, IPSWICH: Qualifying Report, Saturday, July 31 JONES WINS POLE POSITION AMID CONTROVERSY Albury’s Brad Jones today provided German manufacturer Audi with its ...

BOC GASES AUSTRALIAN SUPER TOURING CHAMPIONSHIP - ROUND 6 QUEENSLAND RACEWAY, IPSWICH: Qualifying Report, Saturday, July 31

JONES WINS POLE POSITION AMID CONTROVERSY

Albury’s Brad Jones today provided German manufacturer Audi with its first pole position in this year’s BOC Gases Australian Super Touring Championship when he coped best with variable conditions during a controversial qualifying session at Queensland Raceway in Ipswich.

Jones, the 1998 champion, claimed pole position for tomorrow’s sixth round when he clocked the fastest lap of 1-min 13.19-secs on the 3.1km circuit in a works Audi A4. The 39-year-old set his best lap during the opening stages of the 30-mins session on a dry track before rain began to fall.

A group of seven drivers, including six-times Bathurst 1000 winner Jim Richards, had their qualifying times forfeited for leaving pit-lane during the 30-mins qualifying session. Race Director Peter Wollerman said the seven drivers had breached a rule which requires cars to remain in pit-lane. The seven offenders will be allowed to race, starting the first of the three races behind the those drivers with legitimate qualifying times, plus the BMW of Newcastle’s Troy Searle who does not compete on Saturdays because of religious beliefs.

Richards was the worst affected by the controversy. He recorded the second fastest lap time in the qualifying session, but was relegated to ninth position on the grid. Apart from Richards, others whose qualifying times were forfeited were works Volvo driver Mark Adderton, Sydney-based Ford Mondeo team-mates Peter Hills and Dean Canto, Alfa Romeo racer David Auger, NSW’s Jim Cornish in a Nissan Primera, and Victorian Michael Downard in a BMW.

Championship leader Paul Morris will start second on the grid in his ex-works BMW 320 after qualifying with 1-min 13.91-secs. Morris was third fastest in qualifying, but was promoted to second after Richards’ time was ruled ineligible. The second row of the grid comprises Jones’ Victorian team-mate Matthew Coleman and Sydney Independents Cup driver Anthony Robson in a Honda Accord. Queensland’s John Teulan, making his championship debut, had his qualifying time excluded for failing to stop at the weigh station during the session.

Morris leads the championship with 152 points, followed by Richards on 131, and Jones on 104. The three races tomorrow are over 10, 13, and 20 laps, and the final event includes a compulsory pit-stop.

DRIVER QUOTES:

BRAD JONES (Audi Sport Australia A4): “My pole lap was the quickest I’ve done all week. I was lucky to get a good one in before the rain came. We’ve made some changes to improve the balance of the car and it feels much better.”

PAUL MORRIS (NEMO Racing BMW 320): “I thought I’d missed the front-row, but the others got put back and I moved up to second. It’s a lucky break for me and I aim to make the most of it.”

JOHN COTTER (Volvo Racing Team Manager): “This is a blow for our championship chances and we’re deeply disappointed at the decision affecting our two cars. However, our focus now will be to do the best we can in the races.”

QUALIFYING RESULTS (starting positions for race 1): POS DRIVER CAR TIME 1. Brad Jones (NSW) Audi Sport Australia A4 1:13.19 2. Paul Morris (Qld) NEMO Racing BMW 320 1:13.91 3. Matthew Coleman (Vic) Audi Sport Australia A4 1:13.96 4. Anthony Robson (NSW) Project Racing Honda Accord 1:16.55 5. Mark Zonneveld (A.C.T.) TC Motorsport Peugeot 405 1:16.69 6. Aaron McGill (NSW) Trinovin Ford Mondeo 1:16.75 7. Tony Newman (NZ) TC Motorsport Peugeot 406 No time 8. Troy Searle (NSW) Roadchill Express-SAE BMW 318 No time 9. Jim Richards (Vic) Volvo Racing S40 No time 10. Mark Adderton (NSW) Volvo Racing S40 No time 11. Dean Canto (NSW) Signature Security Systems Ford Mondeo No time 12. Peter Hills (NSW) Signature Security Systems Ford Mondeo No time 13. Jim Cornish (NSW) Visit Your Vet Nissan Primera No time 14. David Auger (Qld) Gun Racing Alfa Romeo No time 15. John Teulan (Qld) Crossroads Discount Centre BMW 318 No time 16. Mike Downard (Vic) MPD Racing BMW 318 No time 17. Milton Leslight (NSW) All Auto Parts Toyota Carina No time

Mike Porter mikep@qldnet.com.au

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series General
Drivers Jim Richards , Brad Jones , Dean Canto , Paul Morris , John Teulan , Aaron McGill , David Auger , Peter Hill , Anthony Robson