MARK WINTERBOTTOM/No.5 Orrin Steel FPR Ford Falcon FG is on pole for Sunday’s Armor All Gold Coast 600 V8 Series race. He led for most of the session. By virtue of this being a new shorter track configuration this year, every top time is a record. Sunday’s pole time of 1:12.3681 broke GARTH TANDER’S Saturday’s top qualifying time of 1:12:6841, and then in the last two minutes, he set another record of 1:12.0389. In fact seven laps into qualifying, WINTERBOTTOM set his first new record. By the end of the half-hour session, nine drivers had gone faster than Tander’s Saturday pole.
Second through fifth fastest were STEVEN RICHARDS/No.6Dunlop Super Dealer Ford Falcon FG; Points Leader JAMES COURTNEY/No.18 Jim Beam Racing Ford Falcon FG; JAMIE WHINCUP/No.1 TeamVodafone Holden Commodore VE; JASON BRIGHT/No.14 Trading Post Racing Holden Commodore VE.
Steven Richards Guest International driver is Aussie WILL POWER. Bright’s co-driver is Frenchman ALAIN MENU.
Tander qualified fifteenth.
SCOTT PRUETT/No.30 Gulf Western Oil Racing Team Holden Commodore VE was the only Guest International driver who qualified a car. The other 28 drivers were the Primarys. Pruett’s car has had crash damage and mechanical problems all weekend, and as such was well off the pace. Although he was able to improve his times, Pruett languished in last place, after nine laps. He pitted for more work on the car. The car was in race trim. He went back out and despite keeping out of the way of the faster cars, Pruett was clipped and stalled against pit wall, bringing out the red flag with four minutes to go.
The weather was hot with a few picturesque white fluffy clouds lurking about
Unlike American series racing to which I’ve become accustomed, the V8 Series don’t do media conferences post-qualifying. The only conference of the day is after the race.
One of the high profile Aussie pit lane/garage visitors was multi-champion motorcycle rider, MICK DOOHAN.