Baird/Almond Mercedes claims Highlands 101 pole

Sunday 13th November, 2016

9:39am

Author: Tom Howard ©

The Scott Taylor Motorsport Mercedes will start the Highlands 101 from pole

The Scott Taylor Motorsport Mercedes will start the Highlands 101 from pole

The Scott Taylor Motorsport Mercedes of Craig Baird and Michael Almond has secured pole position for the Australian Endurance Championship finale at Highlands Park.

Baird and Almond combined in the two 18 minute qualifying sessions to take pole position from the Mercedes AMG GT3 of Dominic Storey and Peter Hackett.

Almond topped the times in the opening qualifying hit out with a 1:31.87s effort which was then followed up by Baird, who finished third fastest in the second session on a 1:31.04s.

An all Mercedes front row for today’s Highlands 101 was secured by Hackett claiming fourth in Q1, while Storey was eighth in a hotly contested second session.

The Miedecke Stone Motorsport Aston Martin will line up third after Andrew and George Miedecke finished seventh and fifth in the respective sessions.

An impressive run from Greg Murphy in Q2 helped the #7 Aston Martin, he shares with circuit owner Tony Quinn, to fourth.

Murphy was second fastest in Q2 courtesy of a 1:30.71s effort around the 4.1km circuit.

The Greg Taylor/Nathan Antunes GT Motorsport Audi R8 was fifth ahead of the Jamec Pem Audi R8 of Christopher Mies and Tony Bates.

Matt Kingsley brushed the wall in qualifying pic Neville Bailey

Matt Kingsley brushed the wall in qualifying pic Neville Bailey

Mies lit up the timing screens by posting a new 1:30.48s qualifying lap record to top the second session.

Newly crowned Australian GT champion Klark Quinn and drift star Mike Whiddett combined to secure seventh in front of the Garth Tander/Steve McLaughlan #2 Jamec Pem Audi R8.

The top 10 was completed by the Theo Koundouris/Marcus Marshall Supabarn Supermarkets Audi R8 and championship leaders Grant Denyer and Nathan Morcom in the #59 Tekno Autosports McLaren 650S.

The only major incident arrived in Q1 when Matt Kingsley hit the wall in the #60 Tekno McLaren causing it to lose its left rear wheel.

Damage caused to the rear of the car ruled the entry out of the second qualifying session.

The Highlands 101 is scheduled to begin 1115 AEDST.