David Wall and Anthony Gilbertson finished the final qualifying session of the 2018 Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia season in style on the streets of Surfers Paradise, taking the TAG Heuer Pole Position Awards while Porsche Works star Earl Bamber secured a second row start for Saturday’s race one.
In his 50th Carrera Cup round, reigning champion Wall had record-setting pace over the 20-minute qualifying session; his best lap of 1:12.2760 eclipsing David Russell’s previous qualifying record lap of 1m12.4167 set in 2014.
Wall’s impressive qualifying pace placed him on pole position for the final Endurance Cup race of the season. Starting alongside Wall for Saturday morning’s 32-lap race one endurance battle is Nick McBride in his best qualifying session since his Albert Park pole position earlier in the season.
“This round last year has very different to this year so to get a pole position here in my 50th round of the championship is obviously very special,” said Wall, who wrapped up the 2017 Carrera Cup title at last year’s Gold Coast finale.
“We learnt a bit from Moffat in the previous practice session; he was very quick as well and I’m rapt for everyone at Wall Racing for this performance, which is our fifth-straight pole position.”
Title favourite Jaxon Evans will start race one from third alongside Earl Bamber; the dual 24 Hours of Le Mans winner had a slow start to Friday with his opening practice campaign ending early after contact with a tyre bundle. Thereafter, Bamber bounced back to secure the fourth best qualifying time.
“It’s awesome to be here with Stephen Grove. Steve helped me back in 2013 when I was younger and now it’s pretty awesome to come to Gold Coast as his teammate. I apologise to the boys and him for absolutely eating a tyre bundle in the first session, but the team did an amazing job to turn the car around,” said Bamber.
“That qualifying session was a bunch of fun. I’m pretty happy with only being one-tenth from pole, I’m pretty rusty in one of these things too. I’m sure everyone will say it, but there was still some improvement in that lap time but I’m loving it and the level of competition is really high.”
The third row will be filled by teammates Jordan Love and Dale Wood ahead of Glen Wood and James Moffat. O’Keeffe will have to fight an uphill battle to keep his title chances alive in race one. Should Evans win, O’Keeffe must finish in the top three to remaining in the championship hunt.
The TAG Heuer Pro-Am pole position went to Gilbertson, his third for the season, a mere 0.06secs from Adrian Flack. Tim Miles was the next best Pro-Am runner while the fourth fastest driver in the class, Sam Shahin, will not take part for the remainder of the Gold Coast event following an accident exiting the back straight chicane, which brought an early end to qualifying.
“It’s my first time at the track and I never thought I’d get pole position,” said Gilbertson. “It’s my first visit to this track and it’s so daunting but I’ve been really comfortable since practice one. I was building pace all day; I wasn’t the quickest in practice one or practice two but pulled it out of the bag on green tyres in qualifying.”
The opening race of Porsche Wilson Security Carrera Cup Australia’s final 2018 round will be held at 8:35am on Saturday, which will be the sixth and final race of the 2018 Endurance Cup. Race two will then follow at 1:15pm on Saturday with race three to be held on Sunday at 1:05pm.
Saturday October 20
8:35am Race 1 (32 laps)
1:15pm Race 2 (12 laps)
Sunday October 21
1:05pm Race 3 (12 laps)
1. #1 David Wall (Pro) 1:12.2760
2. #8 Nick McBride (Pro) 1:12.3202 (-0:00.0442)
3. #7 Jaxon Evans (Pro) 1:12.3458 (-0:00.0698)
4. #911 Earl Bamber (Pro) 1:12.4204 (-0:00.1444)
5. #777 Jordan Love (Pro) 1:12.4786 (-0:00.2026)
6. #100 Dale Wood (Pro) 1:12.6008 (-0:00.3248)
7. #888 Glen Wood (Pro) 1:12.6144 (-0:00.3384)
8. #18 James Moffat (Pro) 1:12.6154 (-0:00.3394)
9. #88 Dylan O’Keeffe (Pro) 1:12.6682 (-0:00.3922)
10. #111 Cameron Hill (Pro) 1:12.8967 (-0:00.6207)
11. #77 Michael Almond (Pro) 1:13.2322 (-0:00.9562)
12. #19 Anthony Gilbertson (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:13.6233 (-0:01.3473)
13. #20 Adrian Flack (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:13.6849 (-0:01.4089)
14. #6 Tim Miles (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:13.7196 (-0:01.4436)
15. #12 Adam Garwood (Pro) 1:13.7607 (-0:01.4847)
16. #13 Sam Shahin (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:14.1227 (-0:01.8467)
17. #4 Stephen Grove (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:14.1406 (-0:01.8646)
18. #50 Dave Stevens (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:14.2785 (-0:02.0025)
19. #22 Dean Cook (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:14.3846 (-0:02.1086)
20. #15 Josh Hunt (Pro) 1:14.3962 (-0:02.1202)
21. #14 Peter Major (Pro) 1:14.4534 (-0:02.1774)
22. #9 Marc Cini (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:14.9131 (-0:02.6371)
23. #35 Indiran Padayachee (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:16.8322 (-0:04.5562)
24. #131 Graham Williams (TAG Heuer Pro-Am) 1:17.0478 (-0:04.7718)