Shane Van Gisbergen has taken a Kiwi win in the ITM SuperSpring on home soil while teammate Jamie Whincup was denied second place following a post-race penalty.
The victory comes after recent aero changes on the ZB Holden in the aim of bringing parity between the models and the recent string of Mustang Victories, the Commodores seem to have found their pace and the Mustangs off there’s tomorrows race will be exciting.
Auckland-raised Van Gisbergen scored his fourth Pukekohe victory on top of his clean sweep of three races in 2016 to give himself a chance of reclaiming the Jason Richards Trophy in the honour of the Kiwi great who died from cancer in 2011.
Whincup finished the race in second but a 15-second post-race penalty for colliding with Nick Percat and pushing the Brad Jones Racing birthday boy off the track on the opening lap meant the 2nd place finish was wiped, and Whincup dropped back to finish in the sixth position officially.
That means the official top three was van Gisbergen, Cam Waters and David Reynolds.
“Man, this place and all the support here makes you lift,” Van Gisbergen said. “It is such as awesome feeling to have so many Kiwi fans. I am glad to get one, hopefully, we can get another tomorrow.
The race was shaped by a safety car which forced two strategies on the field – those who stopped before and those who stopped after. Van Gisbergen was on the latter, while Whincup on the former.
When Mark Winterbottom’s IRWIN Commodore stopped suddenly on track having somehow run out of fuel after only 12 laps, it mixed the field up between those who had already done a pit stop and the others who got the chance under the safety car.
Tomorrow there will be a final Armor All Qualifying session, followed by the return of the top ten shootouts and the final race of the weekend another 200km win.
Source: Supercars Australia