Winton: Stone Brothers Racing qualifying report

Marcos Ambrose takes pole in great day for SBR Marcos Ambrose continued to pencil his name in the record books when he claimed pole position for tomorrow's eighth round of the V8 Supercar Championship Series at Winton Motor Raceway in North-East...

Marcos Ambrose takes pole in great day for SBR

Marcos Ambrose continued to pencil his name in the record books when he claimed pole position for tomorrow's eighth round of the V8 Supercar Championship Series at Winton Motor Raceway in North-East Victoria.

It was the sixth pole of Ambrose's short career in his Pirtek Falcon and gives him a new pole to race average of 3.5 races moving in front of Peter Brock who claimed pole every 3.7 races during his championship career.

Fellow Ford driver Allan Moffat holds the overall race-pole average record of 2.6 after a magnificent career during the1970s.

It was a great day for Stone Brothers Racing with Ambrose's teammate David Besnard also qualifying for the top 10 shootout in his Caltex Havoline Ford.

The SBR Falcons were the only cars in the top 10 which do not use Winton as an exclusive test track.

Ambrose was third after official qualifying, but produced one of the best laps of his career to snatch pole with a lap of one minute and 22.94 seconds.

Championship leader Mark Skaife was second with a 1:23.3837 lap while Jason Bright, who was quickest in qualifying dropped two spots to third with a lap of 1:23.3838.

"That was probably the best lap I have ever done except for my pole lap at Bathurst last year," said Ambrose, who is the leading Ford driver in the championship. "I actually carried too much speed through the first couple of corners, but once I got through them OK I knew I was on a flyer. It was almost the perfect lap. "David and I were the only two drivers in the top 10 who do not use this as a test track and I guess we caught them sleeping a little. "We got HRT today, but we still have a long way to go to get them in the races. "This is traditionally a hard place to pass so to start from the front row is pleasing."

Besnard produced a fantastic lap in his Caltex Havoline Ford in the dying seconds of the qualifying session to jump into the top 10 shootout.

"Unfortunately I just tried too hard on my shootout lap and had a small lock-up," said Besnard. "I was not going to dye wondering. "To get into the top 10 was great, especially when we were pushed for time at the end. "We just need to make a good start tomorrow and get on with the job. "We have the opportunity to build on our points total tomorrow and cement our place in the top 10 and we intend to do that."

Tomorrow's round will consist of two 32-lap races around the 3km Winton layout.

* The races will be shown on Network Ten tomorrow from 2.30pm to 5pm.


QUALIFYING RESULTS
1: Jason Bright (Holden) 1:22.6618
2: Mark Skaife (Holden) 1:22.6624
3: Marcos Ambrose (Ford) 1:227117
4: Todd Kelly (Holden) 1:22.7658
5: Greg Murphy (Holden) 1:22.8852
6: David Besnard (Ford) 1:22.8909
7: Garth Tander (Holden) 1:22.9428
8: John Bowe (Ford) 1:23.0366
9: Rick Kelly (Holden) 1:23.0503
10: Craig Lowndes (Ford) 1:23.1059

TOP 10 SHOOTOUT
1: Marcos Ambrose (Ford) 1:22.94
2: Mark Skaife (Holden) 1:23.38
3: Jason Bright (Holden) 1:23.38
4: Todd Kelly (Holden) 1:23.54
5: Greg Murphy (Holden) 1:23.58
6: Garth Tander (Holden) 1:23.74
7: John Bowe (Ford) 1:23.86
8: Rick Kelly (Holden) 1:24.21
9: Craig Lowndes (Ford) 1:24.40
10: David Besnard (Ford) 1:25.19

CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS AFTER 7 ROUNDS
1: Mark Skaife (Holden) 1693
2: Jason Bright (Holden) 896
3: Greg Murphy (Holden) 894
4: Marcos Ambrose (Ford) 809
5: Todd Kelly (Holden) 802
6: Steve Richards (Holden) 731
7: Craig Lowndes (Ford) 714
8:David Besnard (Ford) 561
9: Garth Tander (Holden) 559
10: Tony Longhurst (Ford) 487
11: Russell Ingall (Holden) 486
12: John Bowe (Ford) 437

-sbr-

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers David Besnard , Garth Tander , Marcos Ambrose , Jason Bright , Greg Murphy , Russell Ingall , Rick Kelly , Mark Skaife , Craig Lowndes , John Bowe , Todd Kelly , Tony Longhurst , Allan Moffat , Steve Richards