Dylan O’Keeffe produces stunning time to take pole at Phillip Island
An all-or-nothing last lap has given Dylan O’Keefe pole position for the first of three carsales TCR Australia Series races at Phillip Island.
The Alfa Romeo driver was trailing Will Brown’s pace-setting Hyundai until the dying seconds of qualifying, when O’Keefe uncorked a cracker to lap the high-speed track in 1 minute 35.9877 seconds to take pole position by 0.4853 seconds.
Brown held onto second place and Jason Bright was strong in third with his Volkswagen Golf with a time of 1:36.5163.
There were five brands in the top six cars, with the top seven qualifiers covered by less than a second.
“It was close, but we got it,” O’Keefe said of his pole lap.
“It’s not easy to drive one of these TCR cars around here but it was fun. So it’s really good to put it all together.”
Brown was disappointed not to hold pole and admitted he had lost his best lap after being baulked by a tail-ender.
“I was a bit annoyed. But we can still race for wins,” said Brown.
“The car was nicely settled today and I could control it well. It was more balanced and it’s got plenty of speed.”
A pair of Hondas qualified in fourth and fifth, with Tony D’Alberto just ahead of John Martin after battling through a misfire with his Civic Type R during Friday practice.
Garth Tander managed seventh-quickest time in his Audi RS3, after pacing the field in practice, while his wife Leanne was 13th and quickest of the four women in the 18-car field in another Audi.
|1||9||Ashley Seward Motorsport||Dylan O’Keeffe||Alfa Romeo Giulietta||1:35.9877*|
|2||30||HMO Customer Racing||William Brown||Hyundai i30N||1:36.4730||0:00.4853|
|3||8||Taskforce / Alliance Autosport||Jason Bright||Volkswagon Golf GTI||1:36.5163||0:00.5286|
|4||50||Wall Racing||Tony D’Alberto||Honda Civic Type R||1:36.6621||0:00.6744|
|5||24||Wall Racing||John Martin||Honda Civic Type R||1:36.7984||0:00.8107|
|6||34||Garry Rogers Motorsport||James Moffat||Renault Megane RS||1:36.8276||0:00.8399|
|7||4||Melbourne Performance Centre||Garth Tander||Audi RS 3||1:36.8420||0:00.8543|
|8||11||HMO Customer Racing||Nathan Morcom||Hyundai i30N||1:36.8688||0:00.8811|
|9||777||Kelly Racing||Andre Heimgartner||Subaru WRX STi||1:37.0280||0:01.0403|
|10||33||Garry Rogers Motorsport||Chris Pither||Renault Megane RS||1:37.1067||0:01.1190|
|11||22||Melbourne Performance Centre||Hamish Ribartis||Audi RS 3||1:37.5637||0:01.5760|
|12||7||Garry Rogers Motorsport||Jimmy Vernon||Alfa Romeo Giulietta||1:37.7329||0:01.7452|
|13||62||Kelly Racing||Alex Rullo||Holden Astra||1:37.9446||0:01.9569|
|14||3||Melbourne Performance Centre||Leanne Tander||Audi RS 3||1:38.3403||0:02.3526|
|15||6||Kelly Racing||Molly Taylor||Subaru WRX STi||1:39.4443||0:03.4566|
|16||35||Alliance Autosport||Alexandra Whitley||Volkswagon Golf GTI||1:40.0145||0:04.0268|
|17||37||Kelly Racing||Chelsea Angelo||Holden Astra||1:42.0753||0:06.0876|
|18||2||Melbourne Performance Centre||Aaron Cameron||Volkswagen Golf GTI||1:54.7304||0:18.7427|