Andre Heimgartner got the final race weekend of the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia off to the perfect start as he secured the TAG Heuer Pole Position at Surfers Paradise, giving himself the best possible chance as his championship rivals struggled.
Heimgartner heads in to the weekend just 62 points behind championship leader David Wall, and the young Kiwi put in a stunning 1:12.563 lap time to take the top spot on the time sheets. The Sonic Motor Racing will also benefit from the boost of having team-mate Nick McBride alongside him as they locked out the front row, with McBride just 0.19 seconds slower.
“I’m pretty pumped. It’s a weekend where I need to win every race to give myself the best chance in the championship. It puts us in a good position for tomorrow; it’s going to be wet so you never know what to expect. We’ll have to see what comes and play it by ear,” said Heimgartner.
Jaxon Evans put in an impressive performance on his Surfers Paradise Street Circuit début to take third place, 0.4 seconds down on the pole time.
A frustrated Michael Almond took fourth place after battling with traffic, and opting to save a set of tyres and not use them on another qualifying run.
Championship leader David Wall and fellow rival Alex Davison could only manage fifth and sixth as they struggled against the pace of the Sonic Motor Racing duo. Davison was relieved to take sixth after enduring gearbox problems in the earlier practice session, which saw the team replace the clutch before qualifying.
Dylan O’Keeffe and Cam McConville line up on the fourth row, with James Abela and Garth Walden rounding out the top 10.
GT3 Cup Challenge Australia graduate Brenton Grove and Jordan Love finished eleventh and twelfth on their track debuts.
In the TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge it was class champion-elect Stephen Grove who secured top spot, despite making contact with the tyre barriers on the exit of turn ten and the team having to make quick repairs.
Meanwhile, TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge champion-elect Stephen Grove grabbed his class pole position as he seeks to wrap up his second title in style.
Championship rival Dean Cook lines up behind Stephen Grove with Marc Cini just 0.05 seconds behind to come in third fastest.
“It’s good to come here and put it on pole position, which gives you an advantage in race one. We have a staggered grid and it’s really hard to pass. Hopefully with a good start we can push on and claim a race one win,” said Stephen Grove.
Rounding out the grid was Max Twigg, who crashed out in second practice, Sam Shahin and Graham Williams.
Tomorrow will see the first of three races over the weekend, while the Sunday proceedings will be led by the 28-lap Endurance race in the morning and then the final sprint race in the afternoon.