Chaz Mostert is a two-time Bathurst 1000 winner, and he earned number two with a flourish.
The fastest car over the entire race battled back from an early puncture. When the race started to get hectic, they used an out-of-sequence pit strategy to their advantage.
At the end of 161 laps, Mostert led Cameron Waters over the line by a touch over three seconds.
Shane van Gisbergen lost a certain second-place result after a right-front puncture blew him out of contention with seven laps in hand.
Mostert’s co-driver Lee Holdsworth claimed his first Bathurst victory. For the Walkinshaw Andretti United team, it is their first win since 2011 when the outfit was the Holden Racing Team.
“Yeah boys!” an exhausted Mostert said as he crossed the line.
“When we did that tyre, I thought it was gonna be a tough slog. But credit to the guys…and this car.
“I’m out of breath, I loved it out there.”
“This week couldn’t have gone more to plan,” Holdsworth said. “Chaz has been quick and the team gave us a great car. It is just amazing.”
Brodie Kostecki rounded out the podium in third.
The first half of the race wasn’t overly frantic. Most of the field settled into strategy games, driving to a number and pitting largely in sequence with each other.
Only the Mostert and Holdsworth entry ran a significantly different pit strategy because of the puncture.
To counter for that, Holdsworth spent a fair chunk of time battling against a crop of ‘A’ drivers.
Everything was then tossed out the window when an Echidna decided to get nice and close to the action, strolling onto the circuit at The Cutting.
Race Control immediately deployed the safety car. Several drivers had to swerve around the wild mammal.
Holdsworth used the opportunity to put Mostert in the car for the run to the finish, leaving only full-time drivers on track.
Van Gisbergen had the lead at the restart. His Red Bull teammate Jamie Whincup drove clean around the outside of Mostert at The Cutting to snatch second.
Jayden Ojeda crashed hard into the wall at the top of the mountain on lap 113, triggering the third safety car.
Nearly everyone in the field came into the pitlane. Mostert jumped to the front as his out-of-sequence strategy meant he took on less fuel.
Whincup was the biggest loser as he double-stacked behind van Gisbergen in the pits and dropped to the lower reaches of the top-ten.
Brodie Kostecki nestled himself into a provisional second behind Mostert and ahead of van Gisbergen. Though it wouldn’t last too long, van Gisbergen got past at The Chase.
A fourth safety car, this time for Jake Kostecki finding the wall at Forrest Elbow, calmed down proceedings and set up a direct fight between Mostert and van Gisbergen.
Mostert quickly blitzed the Kiwi, setting back-to-back fastest laps and establishing a commanding five-second lead before completing his final pitstop.
Anton De Pasquale grounded to a halt on the road up the mountain with 22 laps in hand, causing a safety car and bringing van Gisbergen back onto Mostert’s tail.
De Pasquale said he could change gears in the No.11 Mustang but had zero drive.
Broc Feeney whacked the wall at Reid Park on the restart and beached himself in the sand at McPhillamy. It was a bitter blow for the Super2 champion, who was in contention for a top ten result.
Mostert was running out of safety car restart tricks, but he kept van Gisbergen at bay on each occasion.
Van Gisbergen kept pushing, setting new personal bests as he pursued Mostert. But this time, the hunter couldn’t catch his prey.
His pursuit then ended abruptly when van Gisbergen’s tyre gave way. He dropped back to 18th, where he eventually finished.
“I really tried to win that race,” he said. “Congrats to Chaz and Lee, they were super fast. We just couldn’t quite hold it together.”
Jamie Whincup bows out to the sport with a fourth-place result. The seven-time series champion and four-time Bathurst winner was inducted into the Supercars Hall of Fame on the grid before the race.
|1||Chaz Mostert||Lee Holdsworth|
|2||Cameron Waters||James Moffat||+3.739|
|3||Brodie Kostecki||David Russell||+6.144|
|4||Jamie Whincup||Craig Lowndes||+7.344|
|5||Bryce Fullwood||Warren Luff||+10.400|
|6||Nick Percat||Dale Wood||+13.274|
|7||James Courtney||Thomas Randle||+14.575|
|8||Todd Hazelwood||Dean Fiore||+16.418|
|9||Tim Slade||Tim Blanchard||+16.960|
|10||Will Davison||Alex Davison||+17.520|
|11||David Reynolds||Luke Youlden||+22.875|
|12||Macauley Jones||Chris Pither||+24.912|
|13||Jake Kostecki||Kurt Kostecki||+26.060|
|14||Garry Jacobson||Dylan O’Keeffe||+27.367|
|15||Jack Le Brocq||Zak Best||+31.808|
|16||Mark Winterbottom||Michael Caruso||+35.961|
|17||Jack Smith||David Wall||+39.895|
|18||Shane van Gisbergen||Garth Tander||+1:06.167|
|19||Fabian Coulthard||Jonathon Webb||+5 laps|
|20||William Brown||Jack Perkins||+11 laps|
|DNF||Andre Heimgartner||Matt Campbell|
|DNF||Broc Feeney||Russell Ingall|
|DNF||Anton De Pasquale||Tony D’Alberto|
|DNF||Zane Goddard||Jayden Ojeda|
|DNF||Scott Pye||James Golding|