Motorsport: Whincup hopes late top 10 start is an advantage

By Dale Budge

Jamie Whincup during practice for the Bathurst 1000. Photo / Getty Images
Jamie Whincup during practice for the Bathurst 1000. Photo / Getty Images

Provisional pole-sitter Jamie Whincup is hoping the later start time for today's top 10 shootout at Bathurst will be an advantage for the Red Bull Racing Holden driver.

Whincup posted the fastest time in qualifying yesterday and, as a result, will be the last car to complete the top 10 shootout.

The colder the track temperature should result in slightly better grip and therefore a better time but there is also risk associated with going last in the shootout.

"Fingers crossed tomorrow afternoon it is a cooling track so we get the best conditions going out last," Whincup told reporters after yesterday's qualifying session.

"You have to assume that it generally cools down in the afternoon.

"I have been on receiving end here with rain a couple of times. It has rained just before I have gone out.

I have had some pretty ordinary runs here so hopefully it is kind to me tomorrow."

Whincup says he is pleased with this #88 car that has so far set the fastest time in every session of the event.

"I made no changes during the run. It was more about [improving] myself rather than the car.

"We have been lucky enough to start in the right direction."

While the performance from Whincup and Dumbrell has been very convincing so far the four-time Bathurst winner knows it will count for nothing if they don't get it right on race day.

"There are no points for qualifying on pole but it is fantastic satisfaction though because it is the biggest pole of the year," Whincup says.

"We are going to go hard but whether we hang it on the line and risk it all I'm not sure yet."

As for who his main competition might be during the shootout?

"I think everyone - you can't really put a finger on any one car.

"Everyone is quick on their day it is just who gets it right on the day."

- NZ Herald

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