Sydney 500 V8s: Van Gisbergen takes provisional pole

Shane van Gisbergen will run last in this afternoon’s Top 10 Shootout after taking provisional pole for the second leg of the Sydney 500.

Sydney 500 V8s: Van Gisbergen takes provisional pole
Shane van Gisbergen, Tekno Autosports Holden
Scott McLaughlin, Garry Rogers Motorsport Volvo
Mark Winterbottom, Prodrive Racing Australia Ford
Rick Kelly, Nissan Motorsports

With a Top 10 spot the aim of the 20-minute session, van Gisbergen actually did enough for a Shootout spot when he set a 1m28.435s in the middle of the session.

But he and Tekno opted to play it safe and go for another run, van Gisbergen lapping the Homebush circuit in 1m27.990s to secure not just a Top 10 spot, but provisional pole by 0.227s over fellow Kiwi Scott McLaughlin.

“I’ve obviously got some really good speed but the car is also hard to drive,” van Gisbergen said. “That’s the way it is, we’ll be keep pushing. Hopefully we can do a nice safe lap in the Shootout and be on the front two rows.”

Mark Winterbottom ended up third fastest after deciding against a final run. After going P1 with three minutes to go, he and Prodrive elected to park the car – a gamble that comfortably paid off.

“The guys said we were P1 and pretty comfortable,” explained Winterbottom. “I wasn’t that comfortable, because I thought you could do a 27.9 or something. But it’s good, we saved a set of new tyres for the Shootout.”

Rick Kelly was fourth fastest, the Jack Daniel’s-backed driver forced to set his best time very late after being baulked badly on his first proper flyer. The same went for Nissan stablemate Michael Caruso, who also managed to sneak into the Shootout by going eighth fastest right at the flag.

Jamie Whincup, James Courtney, David Reynolds, and Tim Slade all booked Shootout spots, while the biggest shock of the session was David Wall impressively bagging a Top 10 spot on his last day as a full-time Volvo driver with P9.

The most noteworthy absence from the Top 10 was Craig Lowndes, the Triple Eight driver’s frustrating weekend continuing with P13 in qualifying.

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