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Brown edges Reynolds for Townsville pole

EREBUS Motorsport’s Will Brown has put himself in the best spot to step up his championship challenge after securing pole for Race 1 of the NTI Townsville 500.

Having only just snuck into the Shootout, Shane van Gisbergen was first out on track and immediately set a strong benchmark in a 1:14.0825s.

David Reynolds soon took over the mantle of provisional pole, improving by less than a tenth to a 1:13.9955s.

Reynolds and van Gisbergen effectively gained ground as Broc Feeney, James Golding, Will Davison and Jack Le Brocq all subsequently tried and failed to knock them off.

It wasn’t until the eighth car in the session, Brown, that Reynolds was dislodged from the top.

Brown’s 1:13.9454s shaded Reynolds by just 0.0501s and was enough to keep qualifying fast man Cam Waters at bay too.

“It was awesome. I was watching everyone else before and the times were a bit off and it was pretty hairy, so I thought don’t spray it at (Turn) 1,” said Brown.

“I probably broke a bit early but didn’t make any mistakes really on my lap and just put a tidy lap together.”

The first five rows will line up: Brown, Reynolds, Waters, van Gisbergen, Le Brocq, Feeney, Matt Payne, Golding, Davison and Chaz Mostert.

Payne was second in qualifying this morning but lost places in his maiden Shootout.

Meanwhile it was perhaps a missed opportunity for Practice 2 pacesetter Le Brocq, who ran four green tyres but locked up in the heavy braking zone into Turn 2.

Brown enters this afternoon’s 88-lapper with a golden opportunity to eat into the 59-point margin to championship-leading teammate Brodie Kostecki, who’ll start from 15th.

“It’s disappointing for Brodie, it would have been good to have him racing up there strong as well so I’m sure he’ll come through but starting off the pole is the best part,” said Brown.

“I have just got to get a good start and work it out from there.”

Race 1 starts at 2:40pm.

Results: Top 10 Shootout for Race 1, NTI Townsville 500

19Will BrownErebusChevrolet1:13.9454s
226David ReynoldsGroveFord+0.0501s
36Cam WatersTickfordFord+0.0626s
497Shane van GisbergenTriple EightChevrolet+0.1371s
534Jack Le BrocqMSRChevrolet+0.1969s
688Broc FeeneyTriple EightChevrolet+0.2919s
719Matthew PayneGroveFord+0.3008s
831James GoldingPremiAirChevrolet+0.5571s
917Will DavisonDJRFord+0.8246s
1025Chaz MostertWAUFord+0.8920s
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