ADELAIDE, Australia — Report by Race Chaser Online International Motorsport Correspondent Jack Cobourn — V8SC photo —
With a thrilling drive and a burst of enthusiasm, DJR Team Penske young gun Scott Pye captured his first career V8 Supercars Championship pole during ARMOR ALL Pole Qualifying for the first race of the season-opening Clipsal 500 Adelaide on Friday.
Pye grabbed the pole in the final seconds of qualifying with a best lap of 1:20.0168, 0.0926 seconds faster than Red Bull Racing Australia kingpin and six-time series champion Jamie Whincup.
Pye said the pole was in keeping with the momentum that has been building since his podium finish at Pukekohe last season.
“It’s just a big relief,” Pye said. “That podium at Pukekohe was the start of something good I think … everyone deserves it, it’s been a massive off season I’ve got my wish list and it’s all coming good. We’ve got to keep our head down.”
DJR Team Penske engineer Adam De Borre added that Pye’s pole is a result of hard work.
“It’s fantastic to start like this,” De Borre said. “At the end of last year I didn’t think I’d be here, so this is just unreal. I’m so happy for Scott — he works so hard and so did the whole team just to get here.”
Whincup’s time of 1:20.1093 was enough for the front row, but not enough to knock Pye off the top of the stack. As such, the all-time qualifying leader will roll from second on the grid for Saturday’s first 125 km event.
Scott McLaughlin (1:20.1504), defending series champion Mark Winterbottom (1:20.1622) and two-time defending event winner James Courtney (1:20.2364) rounded out the top five, with Courtney just ahead of new Red Bull Racing Australia / Triple Eight Race Engineering hire Shane van Gisbergen, who landed sixth on the grid.
Brothers Todd and Rick Kelly, Garth Tander and Will Davison were the balance of the top 10 starters.
Craig Lowndes, who breaks the V8SC record for both individual race and round starts this weekend, wound up 11th in the first qualifying session.
Other notables back in the field for race one included Chaz Mostert (12th), who shifts from Prodrive Racing Australia’s main garage to the satellite Rod Nash Racing stable; Cameron Waters (15th), who takes Mostert’s seat at PRA; and David Reynolds (16th), in his first drive for Betty Klimenko and Erebus Motorsport.
RESULTS: V8 Supercars Championship; ARMOR ALL Pole Qualifying: Race 1; Clipsal 500 Adelaide; Adelaide Street Circuit; March 4, 2016
- Scott Pye
- Jamie Whincup
- Scott McLaughlin
- Mark Winterbottom
- James Courtney
- Shane van Gisbergen
- Todd Kelly
- Rick Kelly
- Garth Tander
- Will Davison
- Craig Lowndes
- Chaz Mostert
- Fabian Coulthard
- Michael Caruso
- Cameron Waters
- David Reynolds
- Jason Bright
- Tim Slade
- Lee Holdsworth
- James Moffat
- Nick Percat
- Chris Pither
- Dale Wood
- Andre Heimgartner
- Tim Blanchard
- Aaren Russell
About the Writer
Jack Cobourn is the international motorsports correspondent at Race Chaser Online, and covers the V8 Supercars Championship, Rally Cars and the FIA World Rally Championship. Cobourn has been an avid follower of motorsports for years, having not missed a Formula One race in 16 seasons. He is a graduate of the University of Delaware, with a degree in history and a minor in journalism.
Email Jack at: Jack.Cobourn@yahoo.com
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