Ford dominates the grid for Bathurst - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Ford dominates the grid for Bathurst

By Todd Balym 08/10/2005 07:26:06 PM Comments (0)

Ford took its first step towards ending a six-year Holden domination of the Bathurst 1000 with a front row lock-out for Sunday's 161-lap race.

Craig Lowndes continued to show off his superior speed around Mount Panorama wrestling his Betta Electrical Falcon to pole position in the top 10 shootout.

The 1996 Bathurst winner made tough work of his lap on a gradually drying track, skidding wide several times, but he still saluted with a 2min:08.5990sec lap time.

His consistent speed over everybody else means he and French co-driver Yvan Muller, who is showing improvement with each lap of the Bathurst circuit, will start favourite to complete a rare enduro double after winning the Sandown 500 last month.

"We are still looking to finish the year on a high. This has been the best half a season I have had in five years and I'm not too willing to let it go," said Lowndes, who was the last person to win both Sandown and Bathurst in 1996.

Championship leader Marcos Ambrose grabbed second spot at the front of the grid, guiding his Pirtek Falcon across the line in 2:08.8571, but he remained in awe of Lowndes.

It is the first time a Ford has grabbed pole position since 2001, when Ambrose had the best time in his first appearance at Bathurst.

"Craig was just driving unbelievably. If he said his car was handling well I would hate to see him drive a bad handling car," said Ambrose.

"I'm stoked I am second on the grid, it is a Ford lock-out.

"We did not expect to be front row, I would have been happy with top six.

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