Nick Percat has won the second race of the Truck Assist Sydney Supersprint on Sunday as the Shell V-Power Racing Team grabbed a double podium with Coulthard finishing P2 and McLaughlin finishing P3 after a nail-biting battle to the flag.
Starting third, the Brad Jones Racing driver went all-in for a result, running both stints on soft tyres and coming home almost nine seconds clear of Coulthard.
“The highlight for the weekend for me was getting back to the podium in Race 11,” commented Coulthard. “Although, it was a bit of a sombre experience without the podium celebrations. But that’s what needs to be done during these times. Eyes forward to the next event as I think there is still more speed to come.”
In Race 12 it was Jack Le Brocq who scored his maiden Australia Supercars Championship race win from a hard charging Andre Heimgartner and Todd Hazelwood.
“I definitely think we had the speed to pass Jack but he did an amazing job and credit to him,” said Heimgartner.
“I’m a bit jealous, he got his first win before me but the young blokes here, we’re all having a go and getting up the front which is good to see.”
Under a new Supercars format for the three 32-lap pitstop races, each driver has two sets of soft tyres plus three sets of hards. Regular front-runners like Shell V-Power Racing and the Red Bull Holden Racing Team spread their softs out over two or even three races to maximise their overall points haul. Others, such as the the three Race 12 podium finishers used their softs in the one race.
The top three on overall points for the weekend were Scott McLaughlin, Nick Percat and Fabian Coulthard, who finished 14th, 11th and 13th in the final race respectively. Shane van Gisbergen came in fourth.
“We finished the weekend fourth overall on points, so it wasn’t the worst weekend for us, but certainly from the outside it may look like we had a tough weekend,” commented van Gisbergen. “Certainly, not getting a result last night hurt us, but I think we made the most of what we had today. I’m really looking forward to Darwin to be honest, but it will be tough racing two weekends in a row.
“We’ll have three weeks to think about how we can get the cars a bit quicker, then arrive with a good car from the get-go. It was good to have the fans back in Sydney. The grandstand was obviously as full as we’re allowed, but it certainly improved the atmosphere out there.”
McLaughlin leaves Sydney with a 107-point championship lead over Whincup, with the season to resume at Darwin’s Hidden Valley Raceway on August 8-9.
Race 11 Results
|8||Shane van Gisbergen||50:50.1518|
|13||Anton De Pasquale||51:20.0252|
|16||Jack Le Brocq||51:30.0458|
Race 12 Results
|1||Jack Le Brocq||50:34.9487|
|12||Shane van Gisbergen||51:28.3888|
|19||Anton De Pasquale||51:46.5151|