The Bend Supercars: Tyre trick helps Heimgartner to pole

Andre Heimgartner used a single set of wet weather tyres throughout qualifying to take pole for the first Supercars race at The Bend.

In tricky wet conditions the Kiwi opted to stick to a single tyre set through all three segments of qualifying.

The idea was to retain tyre temperature rather than trying to get heat into new sets of rubber – and it proved to be a masterstroke.

Heimgartner was comfortably fastest in Q2 before sliding his way to a 2m07.856s midway through Q3.

Getting a time down early was critical as conditions worsened slightly at the very end of the session.

That meant Heimgartner's time was good enough to secure a second career pole position by two-tenths of a second.

"The car was great," he said.

"We went with the theory that if we kept the same tyres on I'd be able to work on my driving rather than having to pull the tyre temperature up each time.

"It's great for Kelly Grove Racing to get our first pole position this year, things are heading in the right direction."

Chaz Mostert will start from the outside of the front row, while rookie Will Brown put in an impressive performance to qualify third for Erebus Motorsport.

"It’s awesome, the boys have given me a good car," said Brown. "It was actually really nice to drive in the wet then. We weren’t as fast as the front guys but it was pretty cool to get P3.

“I said to the boys, ‘send it straight out there for the last run’ because I could tell it was just getting wetter and wetter, so get out there and do the time straight away and I think that ended up standing.”

Anton De Pasquale was the best-placed Dick Johnson Racing entry ahead of James Courtney and Will Davison.

There was a trio of title contenders next, Cam Waters seventh while points leader and wet weather specialist Shane van Gisbergen was just eighth.

Jamie Whincup and Brodie Kostecki rounded out the Top 10 while David Reynolds was the man on the bubble and will start 11th after just missing Q3.

Mark Winterbottom didn't even get a shot at getting through Q2 thanks to a power steering failure and will start 20th.

It was a horror session for Brad Jones Racing, the team's four cars filling the back two rows of the grid.

Cla # Driver Car Time Gap Interval
1 7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 2'07.856    
2 25 Australia Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.068 0.212 0.212
3 9 Australia Will Brown Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.450 0.594 0.382
4 11 Australia Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 2'08.658 0.802 0.207
5 44 Australia James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 2'08.871 1.015 0.212
6 17 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 2'08.888 1.032 0.017
7 6 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 2'08.894 1.038 0.006
8 97 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.903 1.047 0.008
9 88 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 2'09.219 1.363 0.316
10 99 Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2'09.990 2.134 0.770
11 26 Australia David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 2'07.419    
12 20 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 2'07.517   0.098
13 55 Australia Thomas Randle Ford Mustang GT 2'07.881 0.025 0.363
14 3 Australia Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 2'07.882 0.026 0.001
15 34 Australia Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.044 0.188 0.161
16 2 Australia Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.405 0.549 0.361
17 27 Australia Kurt Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.633 0.777 0.228
18 22 Australia Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 2'09.101 1.245 0.467
19 19 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 2'09.696 1.840 0.595
20 35 Australia Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 2'08.617 0.761  
21 5 Australia Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 2'08.922 1.066 0.305
22 14 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 2'09.976 2.120 1.054
23 4 Australia Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 2'10.503 2.647 0.526
24 96 Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 2'10.600 2.744 0.096
25 8 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 2'11.152 3.296 0.552
26 18 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB      
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