Porsche Carrera Cup Australia has set sensational pace in the opening day of the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park, with Warren Luff and Shane Smollen taking the TAG Heuer Pole Position Award and TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge Award, respectively.
Luff posted the quickest time in qualifying late in the session; his time of 1:57.7313 eclipsing the previous qualifying record and positioning the pole-sitter ahead of Steven Richards, Shae Davies, Nick Foster, Craig Baird, Michael Patrizi, Sam Power, Nick McBride and ninth-placed Michael Almond on the Race 1 grid.
After taking a clean sweep of race wins and the round win in Adelaide, Luff hopes to continue his strong form at Albert Park.
“I had to work really hard for that pole position; it was very close at the end and these new cars are proving to be so good on every circuit that we go to. Full credit to the team and hopefully we can continue the form we had in Adelaide,” said Luff.
“We always knew that this car would be very special here at Albert Park. I don’t see any reason why we can’t win again this weekend. We’ve found the car to be very consistent throughout practice and qualifying but obviously we’re going to have three tough races here this weekend.”
Smollen was the best of the Elite Class drivers to secure the TAG Heuer Carrera Challenge Award ahead of Duvashen Padayachee, Roger Lago, James Bergmuller and Marc Cini in 14th.
“It’s been a good day in the new car and I’m very happy to break the two minute barrier – it’s a bit of a psychological barrier for the Elite Class drivers,” said Smollen.
“I was really starting to find the limits of the new car and I think we’re going to see some sensational times over the weekend once the track rubbers up.”
Renee Gracie qualified a career best of 15th from Stephen Grove, Tony Walls, Tony Bates, Brenton Ramsay, Maurie Pickering, Ash Samadi, Adrian Mastronardo and Dean Koutsoumidis in 23rd.
Porsche Carrera Cup Australia will hold its first race at the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix tomorrow at 6:20pm, with a race also to be held on both Saturday and Sunday.