Supercars: Van Gisbergen wins opening race at Australian Grand Prix

Shane van Gisbergen has made it back-to-back victories in the Repco Supercars Championship by claiming the opening race win at the Beaurepaires Melbourne SuperSprint today at Albert Park.

In the first ever Gen3 Chevrolet Camaro vs Ford Mustang race held at the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix, the two-time defending Supercars Champion won his 77th career victory after starting from third this afternoon in the #97 Red Bull Camaro to move to within 106 points of current Championship leader, Walkinshaw Andretti Mustang driver Chaz Mostert.

Filling the other two spots on the podium were the Coca Cola Camaro pair of Brodie Kostecki (2nd) and Will Brown (3rd place) to extend the Erebus’ squads lead in the Teams’ Championship to 148 points from Brad Jones’ Racing’s duo of Andre Heimgartner and Bryce Fullwood.

Race Start

The Red Bull Camaro duo of van Gisbergen and Broc Feeney are now third in the Teams’ Championship, one point behind the BJR duo.

In today’s race, rain just seconds before start time saw the race declared wet which changed every teams tire strategy.

Van Gisbergen, started from third and stalked Shell Mustang pole sitter Anton De Pasquale and Kostecki in the opening laps, before making his moves to the front, which he would never give up.

The result capped off a rollercoaster day for van Gisbergen who spun out and crashed in the opening practice session of the day, forcing him to miss the second practice while the team fixed the car ahead of qualifying.

“Like, what I did to my car this morning, tried to write the thing off, and then fix it up like they did,” van Gisbergen said.

“Two good qualis and a race win, I’m stoked, thank you.”

On the crash, van Gisbergen remarked, “I didn’t think it was too bad; like, I didn’t hit the wall too hard, and I got back and the front was destroyed.

“Normally with the old car, you would’ve made it out for Practice 2.

“Yeah, it was a bit of a panic – ‘Are we going make quali, are we not, what’s it going to feel like? – for the guys to just take their time, make sure it’s right. It was cool.”

Shane Van Gisbergen schools them again

Kostecki held on for second, while Brown played the new tire strategy perfectly to claim third place.

Van Gisbergen now sits 7th in the Drivers’ Championship that Mostert leads. Kostecki is second, 31 points back. Monster Energy Ford’s Cam Waters is third, Brown is fourth.

Andre Heimgartner in the R&J Camaro is fifth, David Reynolds in the Penrite Mustang is sixth and van Gisbergen sits seventh after three races.

Tomorrow, Supercars have their second of four races of the weekend from 2:55pm. Van Gisbergen will start from pole position.

Race Results

1 97 Van Gisbergen Red Bull Holden Racing Team +0.000 75
2 99 B. Kostecki Penrite Racing – Erebus +0.391 69
3 9 W. Brown Penrite Racing – Erebus +1.953 64
4 88 B. Feeney Red Bull Holden Racing Team +7.377 60
5 25 Mostert Walkinshaw Andretti United +14.300 55
6 11 A. de Pasquale Shell V-Power Racing Team +14.779 51
7 6 C. Waters Tickford Racing 1 +15.133 48
8 34 J. Le Brocq Matt Stone Racing +15.144 45
9 5 Courtney Tickford Racing 1 +17.048 42
10 96 M. Jones Brad Jones Racing (2) +17.177 39
11 14 B. Fullwood Brad Jones Racing +20.123 36
12 55 T. Randle Tickford Racing 2 +21.962 34
13 19 M. Payne Penrite Racing +23.160 33
14 2 Percat Walkinshaw Andretti United +25.851 31
15 20 S. Pye Team 18 +28.682 30
16 17 Davison Shell V-Power Racing Team +34.178 28
17 8 Heimgartner Brad Jones Racing +34.363 27
18 35 C. Hill Matt Stone Racing +37.362 25
19 26 Reynolds Penrite Racing +37.470 24
20 23 Slade PremiAir Subway Racing +40.039 22
21 18 Winterbottom Team 18 +41.218 21
22 31 J. Golding PremiAir Subway Racing +41.267 19
23 4 J. Smith Brad Jones Racing (2) +41.529 18
24 56 D. Fraser Tickford Racing 2 +46.108 16
25 3 T. Hazelwood CoolDrive Racing +48.374 15
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