The rising star advances to the top-ten shootout but where’s Winterbottom (Frosty)?
Scott McLaughlin, the #33 Volvo driver, takes the top spot in qualifying as he and his teammate, Alex Premat, advance to the upcoming Top-Ten Shootout with very strong pace.
Red Bull in hot pursuit
In a return to the form he’s famous for at the Gold Coast, Craig Lowndes fills the second spot with his co-driver, Steve Richards after just narrowly missing on the top spot out by less than .04 seconds.
Not too far behind, however, is his Red Bull Racing Australia teammate and current championship leader, Jamie Whincup. Nabbing the third spot in qualifying, Whincup and his co-driver, Paul Dumbrell, were frequently towards the front throughout the session.
Returning after a frustrating experience at Bathurst which potentially cost him the win, Tekno Autosports driver, Shane van Gisbergen, puts the V.I.P. Petfoods Holden Commodore into fourth with Tim Slade rounding out the top-five.
Also advancing into the shootout are Garth Tander (Warren Luff), Lee Holdsworth (Craig Baird), David Reynolds (Dean Canto), Michael Caruso (Dean Fiore) and Nick Percat (Oliver Gavin).
One can’t help but wonder where the man who currently sits second in the championship is. Ford Performance Racing (FPR) driver, Mark Winterbottom, failed to make the top-ten despite his strong pace early in the weekend. The final lap of qualifying saw ‘Frosty’ on par to get into the top-five but drama with his car caused him to spin and he was forced to forfeit his chance at the shootout. Coincidently, his FPR teammate and newly crowned Bathurst champion, Chaz Mostert, had similar issues which also cost him a spot in the shootout.
The upcoming top-ten shootout will determine pole position along with the top-ten starting order of the Gold Coast 600 (race 31) which takes place in a few hours. Tomorrow will see another round of qualifying followed by the second race of the weekend.