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Whincup clinches Newcastle Supercars pole

Seven-times Supercars champion Jamie Whincup will start the final race of the season from pole position after winning the top 10 shootout at the Newcastle 500.

It marked a record-extending 83rd career pole for Whincup but the teams’ championship hopes are all but gone with his teammate Shane van Gisbergen to start 21st on the grid on Sunday.

Van Gisbergen failed to make the 10 shootout, after winning race one a day earlier, and then copped a three-position grid penalty for impeding during qualifying.

It means DJR Team Penske duo Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard – who qualified third and fourth – will likely hold onto their 143-point lead over Triple Eight in the teams’ championship.

Supercars champion McLaughlin looks set add the teams’ title to his the drivers’ championship and Bathurst 1000 crown in 2019.

There are still 288 points up for grabs on Sunday afternoon and Whincup hasn’t given up on the teams’ championship after clinching pole.

“That one meant a lot, I went all out,” he said.

“The track was a bit slower than yesterday but I got the most out of the car and it’s a bloody good feeling to get pole around here.

“Yeah 100 per cent (the teams’ title) is still there, but 95 laps is a long way this afternoon.”

Cam Waters will start on the front row ahead of Coulthard and McLaughlin.

Scott Pye, Anton de Pasquale, Dave Reynolds, Time Slade, Lee Holdsworth and James Courtney make up the top 10.

Sunday’s 250km race on the Newcastle beachfront will begin at 1615 AEDT.

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