CLOSE TOWSVILLE QUALIFYING POINTS TO TIGHT RACING
A THIRD STRAIGHT pole position has given Steven Johnson the best possible chances of building on his Paynter Dixon Touring Car Masters series lead this weekend in Townsville.
The WM Waste Mustang driver scored the first pole in North Queensland with a 1m20.49s flyer and was on course to go even quicker near the end of the session before traffic slowed his final lap.
Still the effort was enough to qualify him 0.49s in front of John Bowe who lines up second for the fourth time this year.
It was JohnsonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s fourth pole from five rounds this year and the 11th of his TCM career. The pair have locked out the front row at every round this year.
Bowe threw everything he could at Johnson however was unable to peg the margin back to his long time rival.
It wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t as straightforward as it seemed though with several contenders looking like strong chances to elevate themselves in front of the famous duo.
Andrew Fisher was a superb third in his Jesus Racing Falcon his best ever TCM qualifying performance.
FisherÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 1m21.17s lap was only 0.2s slower than Bowe with the big Falcon clearly revelling in TownsvilleÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 2.8km layout.
Just behind him was Ryan Hansford who will be ruing another mechanical drama from costing him a potential front row show.
The Queenslander had the Multispares Torana on course for at least second until the penultimate corner on the final lap when a suspected Power Steering failure saw smoke pour from his Yellow Holden.
Hansford elected to back off on the run to the line to avoid further damage settling for fourth place less than 0.8s behind pole.
ToranaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s filled four of the first six spots with Bruce Williams (AC Delco) and Jason Gomersall (BigMate Racing) filling the third row.
Williams was much improved after setup issues in practice two yesterday while Gomersall will be pleased with third given he missed practice two on Friday afternoon following a crash in the opening session.
The Matt Stone Racing team took the car off-site to a local crash repairer to fix the bodywork Ã¢â‚¬â€œ successfully based on the strong qualy performance.
Adam Bressington was 0.03s behind Gomersall and seventh his 1m21.9s lap putting him only one second away from the front row Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but the car alongside the Whiteline Racing Camaro that was perhaps the bigger standout.
A stunning 1m22.36s lap from Rob Hackwood put the Wellpro Racing Pontiac right into the top-10 in the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s first qualy session with the car.
Jim Pollicina and Cameron Tilley completed the top-10 with Tony Karanfilovski Ian Woodward Wayne Mercer Aaron McGill and Darren Beale completing the runners.
Unfortunately Allen Boughen struck more dramas in the Mercury Comet with suspected engine issues again rearing their ugly head on the carÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s first lap out.
Race 13 of the 2018 season will commence at 12:40pm local time Ã¢â‚¬â€œ live on FOX Sports 506 with coverage also on Network Ten this afternoon.
QUALIFYING – ROUND 13
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________Pos Car Competitor/Team Driver Vehicle Cap CL Laps Fastest...Lap Gap1 17 WM Waste / Herrod Motorsport Steve Johnson (QLD) Ford Mustang Fastbac 7 4 1:20.4960R 2 18 Wilson Security / PAYCE John Bowe (VIC) Holden Torana SL R 11 5 1:20.9863r 0:00.49033 9 Jesus Racing Andrew Fisher (NSW) Ford Falcon XY GT HO 10 3 1:21.1751r 0:00.67914 6 Multispares Racing Ryan Hansford (QLD) Holden Torana SL R 7 3 1:21.2835r 0:00.78755 5 ACDelco Bruce Williams (VIC) Holden Torana SL R 10 3 1:21.7805 0:01.28456 35 Bigmate Racing Jason Gomersall (QLD) Holden Torana A X Ha 7 2 1:21.9466 0:01.45067 95 Whiteline Racing / VDC.com.au Adam Bressington (NSW) Chevrolet Camaro SS 9 3 1:21.9803 0:01.48438 21 Wellpro Racing Robert Hackwood (QLD) Pontiac Trans Am 10 4 1:22.3691 0:01.87319 7 MOCOMM Motorsport Communicatio Jim Policina (NSW) Holden Torana A X 11 7 1:22.8994 0:02.403410 60 Glennan Transport / ANGLOMOIL Cameron Tilley (NSW) Valiant Pacer 7 6 1:23.0816 0:02.585611 85 Whiteline Racing / King Spring Mark King (QLD) Chevrolet Camaro RS 11 8 1:23.2073 0:02.711312 88 TIFS - Warehousing & Distribut Tony Karanfilovski (NSW) Ford Mustang Trans A 2 2 1:23.3034 0:02.807413 69 Fataz Competition Engines Ian Woodward (QLD) Chevrolet Camaro SS 11 5 1:24.0452 0:03.549214 74 Lyndways Builders Wayne Mercer (VIC) Ford Falcon XY GT HO 11 8 1:24.2871 0:03.791115 75 Ranger Lifting-Rigging-Safety Aaron McGill (NSW) Ford Falcon XY GT 10 8 1:24.9930 0:04.497016 19 Tincone Industrial Services Darren Beale (QLD) Holden Monaro GTS Co 12 11 1:27.7364 0:07.2404 97 Johns Furniture Removals Allen Boughen (QLD) Mercury Comet