11 November 2023 | General

Moffat on pole in thrilling Trans Am qualifying

James Moffat made it back-to-back pole positions in a thrilling National Trans Am Series qualifying session on Saturday morning, with less than four-tenths of a second separating the top four.

After topping both practice sessions on the world-famous Mount Panorama Circuit on Friday, Moffat continued his impressive run of form and was the only driver to break the two-minute 10 second barrier, seven-hundredths of a second ahead of second place Edan Thornburrow.

Thornburrow has been one of the surprise packages so far this weekend and proved that his lap times on practice were no fluke, being rewarded with a front row start ahead of race one as a result.

Rounding out the top three was Lochie Dalton, where despite missing out on the front row, was less than two-tenths of a second back from his Garry Rogers Motorsport teammate on pole.

Starting alongside Dalton for race one will be Cody Gillis, continuing his run of form off the back of an outright podium finish at Race Sydney just last week – with The Racing Academy entry now in a great position to repeat that very feat, or even go one or two better.

Another driver who is continuing to work his way up the field is Ben Grice, this time rounding out the top five drivers and will start alongside the impressive Tom Hayman.

Only a couple tenths of a second would decide the remaining drivers in the top 10, made up of Elliot Barbour, Joshua Andreson, Brett Holdsworth and Elliott Cleary.

The times were all the more impressive considering the lack of track time available throughout the session, with a red flag intervention eight minutes into the session forcing all entries into the pits.

There was just enough time to return for at least one more flying lap, which saw the three leaders, Moffat, Thornburrow and Dalton excel.

Further back in the field, Hugh McAlister excelled in the Hoosier Cup category with 13th ahead of his only class rival for the weekend, Nick Lange – who could only muster 18th outright.

Meanwhile, Mark Crutcher delt the first blow in the Masters Cup, going 13th fastest ahead of John Holinger one place behind, while Craig Scutella will have to settle for 17th.

The field is set for the first of three National Trans Am Series races to take place at Supercheap Auto Bathurst International this weekend, with the first to kick off on Saturday afternoon at 3:25pm AEDT.