McLaughlin’s record not enough to stop Whincup
SCOTT McLaughlin may not have claimed the clean sweep, but it was still an incredible weekend for the new Supercars series leader at the Townsville 400.
McLaughlin seemed to be breaking records every time he hit the track as he posted the fastest time ever recorded in a Supercar at Reid Park in yesterday’s Top 10 Shootout.
The Shell V- Power star grabbed his ninth pole of the season with a blistering lap of 1: 11.9908 which was also the first time a driver has broken the 1: 11 barrier at Reid Park.
McLaughlin first set a new lap record in qualifying for the Saturday race, but he soon bettered that time in Sunday qualifying, flying around the 2.86km street circuit in 1: 12.0306.
McLaughlin insisted there was no defined plan to chaseh records in Townsville, but he said he was delighted to keep finding more speed in his No. 17 Ford Falcon.
“You go out there all the time and you push as hard as you can. I was just trying to pushp the car to McLaughlinM said.
“The Shootout lap was c cool and the car was really hooked up in those conditions. I’m pretty stoked with h how everything went this w weekend.”
McLaughlin was unable to maintain that early speed as Jamie Whincup held him off to reverse the result of Saturday’s race, but the 24- yearold said he was still happy with the podium finish.
“I think we tuned the car out of the window a bit today. We lost that one or two 10ths that we needed to fight Jamie so we’ll look back at that and work towards the next round,” McLaughlin said.
“I had reasonable pace to start the run, but I just couldn’t hold on to it, but cre- its limits,” dit to them. It was an awesome battle the whole race and I really enjoyed it.
“You can always have a crack, but you’ve got to take the seconds when you can like he ( Whincup) has been doing. It’s just about consistency.”
It was a miserable weekend for fellow DJR Team Penske driver Fabian Coulthard, who lost his series lead to McLaughlin after finishing 11th and 21st across the two races.
Coulthard is now 158 points adrift of his Shell VPower teammate, but McLaughlin was confident he could bounce back.
“It’s unfortunate for him, but ‘ Fabs’ has been a great teammate to me and we’ll push on together,” he said.