Scott McLaughlin took his seventh pole in a row and 12th for the season with a stunning effort in qualifying at Sydney Motorsport Park.
The DJR Team Penske driver was second quickest after the first green tyre runs, a tenth behind teammate Fabian Coulthard with a 1m28.690s. He then made his second set of greens count in a big way, charging to another pole with a 1m28.320s on his final run.
With his 12th pole from the 17 races so far this season, McLaughlin has already wrapped up the 2017 pole award – and he says it’s got a lot to do with his engineer Ludo Lacroix.
“I’m really enjoying my relationship with Ludo,” he said. “He’s pushing me a lot. Last night I went back home, it wasn’t the perfect lap [yesterday] and he made me think about it and go through it.
“He’s really guiding me in a good direction and making me push harder than I ever have. It’s really cool, I’m excited.”
Mark Winterbottom will start on the outside of the front row after finding three tenths on his final run, which knocked Shane van Gisbergen – who had gone momentarily quickest with his 1m28.593s – back to third.
Coulthard paid the price for not improving on his second run and slipped back to fourth, while Jamie Whincup and Tim Slade were fifth and sixth.
Chaz Mostert made up 10 spots on his second run to qualify seventh, having run wide at the last corner on his first run. David Reynolds was next, while Scott Pye gave the HSV Racing squad a rare Top 10 grid spot with ninth, ahead of Craig Lowndes.
|1||12||Fabian Coulthard||Ford Falcon FG/X|
|2||55||Chaz Mostert||Ford Falcon FG-X||3.984|
|3||88||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||7.448|
|4||5||Mark Winterbottom||Ford Falcon FG-X||8.782|
|5||2||Scott Pye||Holden Commodore VF||9.324|
|6||23||Michael Caruso||Nissan Altima||10.187|
|7||888||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||10.381|
|8||9||David Reynolds||Holden Commodore VF||17.039|
|9||33||Garth Tander||Holden Commodore VF||17.456|
|10||17||Scott McLaughlin||Ford Falcon FG-X||18.458|
|11||21||Tim Blanchard||Holden Commodore VF||19.078|
|12||15||Rick Kelly||Nissan Altima||19.379|
|13||95||Will Davison||Holden Commodore VF||21.488|
|14||56||Jason Bright||Ford Falcon FG-X||21.933|
|15||97||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||22.163|
|16||34||James Moffat||Holden Commodore VF||23.870|
|17||22||James Courtney||Holden Commodore VF||25.277|
|18||18||Lee Holdsworth||Holden Commodore VF||25.740|
|19||99||Dale Wood||Holden Commodore VF||26.106|
|20||6||Cameron Waters||Ford Falcon FG-X||27.220|
|21||14||Tim Slade||Holden Commodore VF||27.537|
|22||78||Simona de Silvestro||Nissan Altima||28.106|
|23||3||Alex Davison||Holden Commodore VF||29.889|
|24||62||Alex Rullo||Holden Commodore VF||41.303|
|25||8||Nick Percat||Holden Commodore VF||1'29.211|
|26||7||Todd Kelly||Nissan Altima||1 lap|