Whincup secures front row start for Abu Dhabi sprint races‏

TeamVodafone will start all three V8 Supercar races at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina Circuit in strong form after defending V8 Supercar Champion Jamie Whincup secured a front row start for all three-12 lap races this weekend.

Stablemate Craig Lowndes will start tomorrow’s opening race ninth followed by a 12th place start position for Races 25 and 26 of the V8 Supercar Championship Series.

Whincup took a cautious approach to todays opening 30 minute practice session, opting for hard tyres and setting the fourth fastest lap.

The #1 Holden driver dominated the ensuing practice session to command the top spot on the time-sheets ahead of the afternoon qualifying session.

Lowndes ended the opening practice session 15th but after a series of changes and a run on soft tyres late in the final practice session, he posted the seventh fastest lap of the session.

With each drivers three fastest laps in today’s qualifying session determining their start positions for the three 12-lap races, Whincup was on the pace early, setting a time of 2.11.8850 on his second flying lap.

Holding top spot for most of the session, Whincup was pipped for the top spot by Ford driver Will Davison, with two minutes remaining in the session.

Setting the ninth fastest time on his first flying lap of the 20 minute qualifying session, Lowndes was just settling into a rhythm when he clipped a curb.

With limited time on the clock for adjustments, the #888 pilot was unable to improve on his time and will start tomorrow’s opening race ninth.