ABU DHABI // Will Davison had pledged before the start of the weekend that he would be on maximum attack in Abu Dhabi - and lived up to those words yesterday with a superb late lap to take pole position for the three Australian V8 Supercar races at Yas Marina Circuit.
The Melbourne-based driver posted a time of 2 mins, 11.766 secs in his Ford Falcon in the closing stages of qualifying.
This edged out Jamie Whincup, the championship leader, who had topped the times for much of the 20-minute session in his Triple Eight Racing Holden Commodore car, but had to settle for second place at a venue where he has won three times before.
Davison, whose best past result at Yas Marina, is fourth in the standings going into today's first of three races, trailing Whincup by 557 points with seven races left of the season, and realistically has to win both of today's 12-lap races and the lone event tomorrow if he is to have a chance of reeling in Whincup.
Davison said: “It is brilliant to be on pole for all three races. We backed ourselves, made some really good changes before qualifying and the car was absolutely mint."
Davison's chances of catching Whincup are better than the other two title contenders, who both struggled yesterday around the 5.5 kilometre track.
Mark Winterbottom, second in the championship, was only seventh quickest - eight tenths slower than his teammate Davison - after he had been more than a second off the pace in the morning's practice sessions.
It was even worse for third-placed Craig Lowndes, Whincup's teammate, who could only go ninth fastest.
The top five on the grid behind Davison and Whincup is completed by Shane Van Gisbergen, Tim Slade and Lee Holdworth.
Race one takes place at 10am tomorrow, with the second race beginning at 11.55am.
Sunday's final race is at 1.30pm.
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