Drivers have claimed the opening leg of the Castrol Edge Gold Coast 600 as one of the cleanest on record after race officials agreed to back off on over-policing kerb infringements.
Race winner Shane van Gisbergen and runner-up Jamie Whincup gave a thumbs up to a race which was devoid of any kerb controversy which has been an annual bugbear of the event.
Several drivers were given bad sportsmanship flags throughout the 102-lap journey however none extinguished their kerb-hopping quota.
At the Friday night drivers briefing, heated words were exchanged following practice which saw a spate of penalties handed out for kerb abuse.
As a result the policing of the sensors were relaxed together with the beefing up of the tyre bundle located at Turn 2.
“The drivers briefing was a bit heated last night. I think they (race officials) came to the best decision with the way the kerbs are,” Van Gisbergen said.
“The bundles are enough down the back straight, they stop you from abusing it and the one bundle at Turn 1, they’ve strengthened so it didn’t get ruined like yesterday.
“Then Turn 2 self regulates itself. If you take too much there you are in trouble.
“There’s no point in giving you a penalty because you penalise yourself. I think they’ve done a good job.
“It’s been the best race in years with the tyre bundle situation and none of them ended up on the track.
“There was a lot of unhappy drivers yesterday so the category has to be congratulated for doing a good job because it’s much improved from every other race I’ve done (here).”
Whincup concurred with the Tekno Holden driver, declaring Race 31 as the best conducted for some time around the problematic Surfers Paradise street track.
“The category has been doing quite a lot to get the tyre and the kerb situation sorted,” Whincup said.
“By far that was the best, we didn’t have cars running through pitlane or anyone taking the piss so to speak.
“So it was good to go there and race hard and stay within the limits.”