Townsville Supercars: McLaughlin takes record-breaking pole

Scott McLaughlin broke the unofficial lap record in Townsville on his way to an eighth pole of the Supercars season.

Townsville Supercars: McLaughlin takes record-breaking pole
Scott McLaughlin, Team Penske Ford
Scott McLaughlin, Team Penske Ford
Jamie Whincup, Triple Eight Race Engineering Holden
Chaz Mostert, Rod Nash Racing Ford
Shane van Gisbergen, Triple Eight Race Engineering Holden
Mark Winterbottom, Prodrive Racing Australia Ford

The DJR Team Penske star was third quickest after the first runs, a 1m12.375s putting him within half a tenth of Chaz Mostert and Jamie Whincup.

He then jumped to the top with a lap record-busting 1m12.073s on his second run, McLaughlin deciding the time was good enough for pole and not even bothering with a third and final run.

“That was awesome, the car was fantastic,” said McLaughlin. “I wish I’d got the lap together – obviously I did, but there were a few little ifs, buts, and maybes there that I need to work on myself.”

Whincup was the big winner from the final runs, jumping Mostert on his last lap to grab the outside of the front row. Mostert didn’t improve on his final run, but still wound up third.

Cam Waters made it an all-Prodrive Racing second row with P4, ahead of Shane van Gisbergen and Mark Winterbottom.

Nick Percat and David Reynolds were next in line, while points leader Fabian Coulthard could manage just ninth, nearly half a second off his Penske teammate.

Still, the Kiwi was happy to be in the Top 10 at all after a difficult Friday.

“It’s much more comfortable for me today than it was yesterday,” he said.

“You’re trying to learn a new car in three laps, you get three times laps for three sets of tyres. I’m not unhappy with the performance, the boys have done fantastic job getting the car back up into the 10; we were nowhere near that yesterday.

“It’s all positive, we can move forward from there.”

Michael Caruso was the best Nissan in 10th, while Craig Lowndes survived a scary moment with Whincup at Turn 6 late in the session and was just 19th fastest.

ClaDriverCarTimeGap
1 17 new_zealand  Scott McLaughlin  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.0731  
2 88 australia  Jamie Whincup  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.2864 0.2133
3 55 australia  Chaz Mostert  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.3370 0.2639
4 6 australia  Cameron Waters  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.3753 0.3022
5 97 new_zealand  Shane van Gisbergen  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.3969 0.3238
6 5 australia  Mark Winterbottom  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.4221 0.3490
7 8 australia  Nick Percat  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.4368 0.3637
8 9 australia  David Reynolds  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.5555 0.4824
9 12 new_zealand  Fabian Coulthard  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.5586 0.4855
10 23 australia  Michael Caruso  Nissan Altima 1'12.6316 0.5585
11 14 australia  Tim Slade  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.6465 0.5734
12 18 australia  Lee Holdsworth  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.6467 0.5736
13 33 australia  Garth Tander  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.6505 0.5774
14 2 australia  Scott Pye  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.6513 0.5782
15 7 australia  Todd Kelly  Nissan Altima 1'12.6696 0.5965
16 22 australia  James Courtney  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.6803 0.6072
17 34 australia  James Moffat  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.7074 0.6343
18 15 australia  Rick Kelly  Nissan Altima 1'12.7396 0.6665
19 888 australia  Craig Lowndes  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.7589 0.6858
20 99 australia  Dale Wood  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.7877 0.7146
21 56 australia  Jason Bright  Ford Falcon FG-X 1'12.8433 0.7702
22 19 australia  Will Davison  Holden Commodore VF 1'12.8609 0.7878
23 21 australia  Tim Blanchard  Holden Commodore VF 1'13.2050 1.1319
24 78 switzerland  Simona de Silvestro  Nissan Altima 1'13.5021 1.4290
25 3 australia  Aaren Russell Holden Commodore VF 1'13.6754 1.6023
26 62 australia  Alex Rullo  Holden Commodore VF 1'13.7171 1.6440
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Townsville Supercars: Mostert fastest in final Friday practice
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