Red Bull Ampol Racing’s dominance at Symmons Plains in the Repco Supercars Championship has continued after Shane van Gisbergen won the team’s 14th race at the Launceston based circuit since 2014.
In what was a chaotic opening race at the Ned Whiskey Tasmania SuperSprint, van Gisbergen made up four positions to claim his second win for the year having started in fifth.
Picking up second place behind the 2021 reigning champion was Shell V Power Racing’s Will Davison, who started where he finished, while polesitter Cameron Waters rounded out the podium.
The Tickford Racing star enjoyed a strong morning with his third consecutive pole position in Tasmania, but he couldn’t maximum his start, losing first place to the fast charging van Gisbergen, before losing out second to Davison from an undercut.
As for van Gisbergen, it was a fantastic performance from the Kiwi, who made four great passing moves to work his way up to the lead – the most impressive being his two passes on Davison and Waters, which were identical aggressive moves just after the turn four hairpin.
In winning the round's first of three outings, van Gisbergen became the equal fourth highest race winner in Supercars/Australian Touring Car Championship history – equalling Scott McLaughlin and Garth Tander’s record of 55.
"What a great race," van Gisbergen said post-race.
"I was rubbing them up a bit, but that's what we're here to do.
"We need to be better tomorrow, but I'm super stoked."
While van Gisbergen treated fans to an entertaining display, there was plenty of drama behind him during the 44-lap race, the most notable involving fellow title rival Chaz Mostert.
Although he started out of the top 10 after a disappointing qualifying, Mostert had slowly made up some ground across the race, only to be an innocent bystander in an incident involving Mark Winterbottom and David Reynolds with just seven laps to go.
Click here to view the results from race three.
Forced back to the pits to recover the car and salvage some points, Mostert wasn’t the only driver to have a forgettable Saturday with Walkinshaw Andretti United teammate Nick Percat and Jack Le Brocq also struck with issues early in the race and losing hope of a strong finish.
As van Gisbergen moved into the outright championship lead after three races, Mostert dropped to fifth behind Anton De Pasquale, Brodie Kostecki and Davison – Kostecki finishing the race in fourth ahead of Broc Feeney and De Pasquale.
The Ned Whiskey Tasmania Supersprint continues tomorrow with races four and five to take place at 1pm and 3:30pm AEST.