Pukekohe qualifying cancelled due to rain

Poor weather conditions have caused Supercars qualifying to be cancelled at Pukekohe, with the grid for today's race set on combined Friday practice times.

Pukekohe qualifying cancelled due to rain

With relentless rain lashing the circuit all morning, the start of the session was delayed by the best part of 20 mins as officials waited to see if conditions would improve.

When the session did eventually start the conditions were bad enough to catch the likes of title contenders Scott McLaughlin Shane van Gisbergen out, race director Tim Schenken calling a red flag after just four minutes.

Race officials spent the next half an hour monitoring conditions, before opting to cancel the session.

That means Cam Waters will start from pole, alongside Jamie Whincup. McLaughlin will start fourth, Chaz Mostert fifth, van Gisbergen sixth, and Fabian Coulthard seventh.

According to drivers, the resurfaced back straight was causing the biggest problem.

"I did a lap at half throttle down the back straight, and I said 'I'm pitting, this is stupid'," said van Gisbergen. "Then they red flagged it straight away.

"I don't know, it's crazy. The back straight is too new on the surface, it's so shiny and slippery.

"I don't want to be out there on that stuff, it's a bit of a joke. I hope the rain eases and we can have a safe race even if it is wet, but that level is too much."

James Courtney added that the visibility was another issue.

"The majority of the track isn't too bad, it's just the back straight where they've resurfaced it," he said.

"I think they've resurfaced it with ice! Second gear and the thing is aquaplaning and out of control. It's pretty hairy.

"There was a car going slow, and I didn't even see it until the last second and nearly cleaned him up. It's just that back section; you're lucky to see the end of the bonnet."

Scott McLaughlin, meanwhile, reckons the conditions are as bad as he's ever seen.

"I had a bit of a moment into [Turn] 1 before," said the DJR Team Penske star. "I absolutely crapped myself. It's pretty sketchy out there, that's the worse I've ever been in a racecar.

"It's full on, and then the spray is bad. We're probably 26 whinging racecar drivers at the moment. We're lucky to be doing what we're doing, but when you go out there and you can hardly get full throttle anywhere, it's pretty sketchy."

Teams have just three sets of new wet weather tyres available for each car this weekend, and a single set of grooved tyres used to transport the cars.

Grid for Race 1

1 Cam Waters
2 Jamie Whincup
3 Mark Winterbottom
4 Scott McLaughlin
5 Chaz Mostert
6 Shane van Gisbergen
7 Fabian Coulthard
8 Tim Slade
9 David Reynolds
10 Craig Lowndes
11 Lee Holdsworth
12 Jason Bright
13 Rick Kelly
14 James Courtney
15 Michael Caruso
16 Garth Tander
17 Scott Pye
18 Nick Percat
19 James Moffat
20 Dale Wood
21 Will Davison
22 Todd Kelly
23 Tim Blanchard
24 Simona de Silvestro
25 Aaren Russell
26 Jack Perkins

shares
comments
Winterbottom 'comfortable' for the first time in 10 months

Previous article

Winterbottom 'comfortable' for the first time in 10 months

Next article

Rain could cause schedule reshuffle at Pukekohe

Rain could cause schedule reshuffle at Pukekohe
Load comments

About this article

Series Supercars
Event Auckland
Location Pukekohe Park Raceway
Author Andrew van Leeuwen
Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske? Prime

Can DJR still be a Supercars powerhouse after Penske?

Roger Penske's whirlwind Australian Supercars sojourn is over. After six seasons, three drivers' titles, three teams' championships and a Bathurst 1000 crown, The Captain has sold his controlling stake in Dick Johnson Racing back to the squad and walked away from the category.

Supercars
Feb 26, 2021
Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader? Prime

Can Whincup be Triple Eight's ruthless leader?

Supercars' most successful team of the past 15 years is set for a radical shakeup next year when Jamie Whincup retires from driving and takes over the reins at Triple Eight. But does he have what it takes to be the new Roland Dane?

Supercars
Feb 8, 2021
How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year Prime

How a lifetime Supercars deal broke down in one year

David Reynolds inked what was effectively a lifetime deal with Erebus in 2019 – only to walk out a year later. What went wrong?

Supercars
Dec 18, 2020
Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester" Prime

Why Supercars now needs a new "human salt harvester"

Scott McLaughlin has been a controversial figure in Supercars over the past few years but, as he heads off to a fresh challenge in IndyCar, the Australian tin-top series needs to find someone else to fill his drama-filled boots as the category enters a new era...

Supercars
Nov 3, 2020
Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title Prime

Why 2020 isn't McLaughlin's greatest title

Scott McLaughlin was quick to describe his third Supercars title as his best yet. But even though it didn't match the dramatic backstory of his 2018 triumph, there's a good reason for him wanting to control the narrative this time around.

Supercars
Oct 2, 2020
Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars Prime

Why a Bathurst finale is risky business for Supercars

The Bathurst Grand Final may provide Supercars its greatest spectacle yet – but there's a risk it will force the series to face a hard truth.

Supercars
Sep 4, 2020
Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver Prime

Why Scott McLaughlin must become an IndyCar driver

Scott McLaughlin, two-time and current Supercars champion, should have been making his NTT IndyCar Series debut for Team Penske at the GP of Indianapolis, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced a rescheduling that has put the brakes on his career switch. But David Malsher-Lopez explains why the New Zealander deserves this opportunity as soon as possible.

IndyCar
Jul 4, 2020
Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney Prime

Tickford's 10-year wait for James Courtney

When the Supercars season resumes James Courtney will be a Tickford Racing driver – but it's not the first time the star driver has flirted with the famous Ford squad.

Supercars
May 19, 2020