Courtney/Perkins score fairytale GC600 victory

Speedcafe.com

Sunday 25th October, 2015 - 5:59pm

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Perkins and Courtney celebrate victory

Perkins and Courtney celebrate victory

A mid-race fuel strategy call set up a sensational victory for James Courtney and Jack Perkins on the former’s return from injury at Surfers Paradise.

Entering the weekend under a cloud following a two-month lay-off, Courtney showed no signs of weakness as he conserved fuel to the chequered flag.

The victory also marks a maiden triumph for Jack Perkins in his 129th V8 Supercars Championship start.

Rick Kelly/David Russell took second for Nissan ahead of Garth Tander/Warren Luff, who secured the Pirtek Enduro Cup on a fairytale day for the HRT.

Starting from 11th on the gird, Perkins held 10th through the early stages; a position that Courtney continued in once the minimum co-driver laps expired.

A debris Safety Car on lap 54 then turned the race on its head, triggering the entire field to pitlane for fuel and soft tyres significantly ahead of schedule.

Double-stacking hurt all of those running behind their team-mates, including Courtney, who rejoined the circuit 16th.

Returning for a splash of fuel before the Safety Car returned to pitlane however would prove the winning move.

Restarting 20th, the #22 Commodore eventually cycled to the front as others progressively made their third stops – the last of which came just five laps from the flag.

Kelly meanwhile elected against a splash of fuel at all, conserving throughout a near 50 lap final stint to score second in a car that had run 23rd after a torrid opening lap.

Courtney takes the flag for victory in Race 27

Courtney takes the flag for victory in Race 27

Tander led the majority of the race’s second half before peeling in for fuel with 10 laps to go and rejoining third, marking a three-place gain on where he’d run at the restart.

Eventual fourth place finishers Craig Lowndes and Steven Richards Holden had led the early stages and appeared on course for victory before the mid-race strategy twist.

Lowndes led at the restart before proving among the first to commit to the third stop, dropping him temporarily down the order.

The pole-sitting Scott McLaughlin/Alexandre Premat Volvo shadowed the Red Bull Holden from the outset, but eventually finished sixth after losing out late to a charging Shane van Gisbergen.

The Jamie Whincup/Paul Dumbrell Holden took seventh despite double-stacking in its stop, followed home by James Moffat, David Reynolds and Michael Caruso.

Mark Winterbottom’s championship lead was further eroded by a lacklustre run to 11th, while the sister Cameron Waters/Russell Ingall entry struggled for pace on its way to 19th.

Winterbottom now leads Lowndes by 258 points with three events remaining.

Result: V8 Supercars Race 27, Surfers Paradise

1 Holden Racing Team J.Courtney/J.Perkins Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:20.4257
2 Nissan Motorsport R.Kelly/D.Russell Nissan Altima 102 02:14:22.4187
3 Holden Racing Team G.Tander/W.Luff Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:26.1032
4 Red Bull Racing Australia C.Lowndes/S.Richards Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:31.6848
5 Team Darrell Lea STIX S.Van Gisbergen/J.Webb Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:34.9491
6 Wilson Security Racing GRM S.McLaughlin/A.Premat Volvo S60 102 02:14:35.5685
7 Red Bull Racing Australia J.Whincup/P.Dumbrell Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:36.0590
8 Nissan Motorsport J.Moffat/T.Douglas Nissan Altima 102 02:14:36.2947
9 The Bottle-O Racing Team D.Reynolds/D.Canto Ford Falcon FG/X 102 02:14:39.1019
10 Nissan Motorsport M.Caruso/D.Fiore Nissan Altima 102 02:14:41.8647
11 Pepsi Max Crew M.Winterbottom/S.Owen Ford Falcon FG/X 102 02:14:42.9338
12 Supercheap Auto Racing T.Slade/T.D’Alberto Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:49.8877
13 Freightliner Racing F.Coulthard/L.Youlden Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:50.3802
14 Walkinshaw Racing L.Holdsworth/S.Bourdais Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:50.7841
15 Repair Management Aust Racing N.Percat/O.Gavin Holden Commodore VF 102 02:14:52.9429
16 Erebus Motorsport V8 W.Davison/A.Davison Mercedes E63 AMG 102 02:15:00.5318
17 Nissan Motorsport T.Kelly/A.Buncombe Nissan Altima 102 02:15:10.4312
18 Super Black Racing A.Heimgartner/A.Pedersen Ford Falcon FG/X 102 02:15:12.9558
19 Pepsi Max Crew C.Waters/R.Ingall Ford Falcon FG/X 102 02:15:16.3535
20 GB Galvanizing Racing D.Wood/M.Jones Holden Commodore VF 102 02:15:16.6141
21 DJR Team Penske S.Pye/M.Ambrose Ford Falcon FG/X 102 02:15:31.1188
22 Team Cooldrive T.Blanchard/K.Reindler Holden Commodore VF 101 02:14:51.9744
23 Team BOC J.Bright/A.Jones Holden Commodore VF  97 02:14:46.5574
24 Erebus Motorsport V8 A.Walsh/J.Le Brocq Mercedes E63 AMG  88 02:14:24.5375
DNF Wilson Security Racing GRM Chris Pither Volvo S60   6     7:41.0451

Championship Standings

1 Mark Winterbottom 2599
2 Craig Lowndes 2341
3 David Reynolds 2281
4 Garth Tander 2141
5 Fabian Coulthard 2096
6 Shane van Gisbergen 2061
7 Chaz Mostert 2017
8 Jamie Whincup 1792
9 Rick Kelly 1637
10 James Courtney 1634
11 Scott McLaughlin 1578
12 Tim Slade 1456
13 Michael Caruso 1441
14 Jason Bright 1392
15 Will Davison 1336
16 Lee Holdsworth 1335
17 James Moffat 1274
18 Todd Kelly 1236
19 Nick Percat 1154
20 Scott Pye 1059
21 Dale Wood 1046
22 Andre Heimgartner 977
23 Tim Blanchard 969
24 David Wall 831
25 Warren Luff 747
26 Ash Walsh 726
27 Jonathon Webb 699
28 Jack Perkins 693
29 Steve Owen 684
30 Steve Richards 681
31 Dean Canto 648
32 Luke Youlden 516
33 David Russell 492
34 Alexandre Premat 492
35 Tony D’Alberto 462
36 Taz Douglas 426
37 Sebastien Bourdais 423
38 Russell Ingall 414
39 Dean Fiore 399
40 Marcos Ambrose 395
41 Cameron Waters 378
42 Andrew Jones 345
43 Macauley Jones 327
44 Alex Davison 327
45 Paul Dumbrell 326
46 Karl Reindler 288
47 Alex Buncombe 276
48 Oliver Gavin 258
49 Ant Pedersen 185
50 Jack Le Brocq 177
51 Chris Pither 141
52 Aaren Russell 108
53 Drew Russell 108
54 Simona de Silvestro 84
55 Renee Gracie 84

Pirtek Enduro Cup Standings

1 Garth Tander/Warren Luff 747
2 Shane van Gisbergen/Jonathon Webb 699
3 Mark Winterbottom/Steve Owen 684
4 Craig Lowndes/Steve Richards 681
5 David Reynolds/Dean Canto 648
6 James Courtney/Jack Perkins 573
7 Fabian Coulthard/Luke Youlden 516
8 Scott McLaughlin/Alexandre Pramat 492
9 Rick Kelly/David Russell 492
10 Tim Slade/Tony D’Alberto 462
11 James Moffat/Taz Douglas 426
12 Lee Holdsworth/Sebastein Bourdais 423
13 Michael Caruso/Dean Fiore 399
14 Cameron Waters/Russell Ingall 378
15 Jamie Whincup/Paul Dumbrell 351
16 Jason Bright/Andrew Jones 345
17 Will Davison/Alex Davison 327
18 Dale Wood/Macauley Jones 327
19 Tim Blanchard/Karl Reindler 288
20 Todd Kelly/Alex Buncombe 276
21 Scott Pye/Marcos Ambrose 270
22 Nick Percat/Oliver Gavin 258
23 Andre Heimgartner/Ant Pedersen 210
24 Ash Walsh/Jack Le Brocq 177
25 David Wall/Chris Pither 141
26 Aaren Russell/Drew Russell 108
27 Simona de Silvestro/Renee Gracie 84