Lowndes charges to victory in Symmons opener

Saturday 28th March, 2015 - 3:53pm

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Lowndes led from the start and was never headed

Lowndes led from the start and was never headed

Craig Lowndes drove away from the field to take a comfortable victory in the opening race of the weekend at Symmons Plains.

The pole-sitter beat fellow front-row starter Mark Winterbottom to the first corner and went on to lead all 25 laps.

Lowndes took the flag 2.3s clear of the Pepsi Ford, which had third placed James Courtney’s HRT Commodore in close company.

“We worked pretty tirelessly yesterday on making sure we had a good race car,” said Lowndes, who had endured a series of wild offs in Friday practice.

“The most important part was to get that break off the start and make sure Frosty couldn’t stay in the tow on the back straight.

“We then looked after the car and brought it home.”

Lowndes scored his 98th career win

Lowndes scored his 98th career win

Will Davison had taken third from Courtney at the first corner but was then bumped into a spin at the Turn 4 hairpin.

The Erebus Mercedes rejoined at the back of the field and could recover to no better than 17th in the short race.

Shane van Gisbergen benefitted from the incident to score fourth ahead of Chaz Mostert, David Reynolds, Jamie Whincup, Garth Tander, Tim Slade and Fabian Coulthard.

Passing among the front-runners was non-existent after the second lap, with the top 10 all holding their positions to the flag.

The fourth lap saw Todd Kelly tagged into a spin by Lee Holdsworth amid a spirited dice for 12th, which resulted in the Holden receiving a drive-through penalty.

Scott McLaughlin and Ash Walsh were both hit by engine problems and failed to finish.

The Volvo team is now undertaking an engine change ahead of this afternoon’s second heat, which is scheduled for 1715 local time.

RESULTS : Race 4 – Symmons Plains

1

Red Bull Racing Australia    

Craig Lowndes      

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:01.3121

2

Pepsi Max Crew               

Mark Winterbottom

Ford Falcon FG/X   

25

22:03.5886

3

Holden Racing Team           

James Courtney     

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:04.3835

4

Team Darrell Lea STIX        

Shane Van Gisbergen

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:09.7694

5

Pepsi Max Crew               

Chaz Mostert       

Ford Falcon FG/X   

25

22:10.1141

6

The Bottle-O Racing Team     

David Reynolds     

Ford Falcon FG/X   

25

22:11.1896

7

Red Bull Racing Australia    

Jamie Whincup      

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:11.3944

8

Holden Racing Team           

Garth Tander       

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:12.2731

9

Supercheap Auto Racing       

Tim Slade          

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:14.6622

10

Freightliner Racing          

Fabian Coulthard   

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:15.3370

11

Super Black Racing           

Andre Heimgartner

Ford Falcon FG/X   

25

22:17.2157

12

Nissan Mororsport            

James Moffat       

Nissan Altima      

25

22:19.3702

13

GB Galvanizing Racing        

Dale Wood          

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:22.8746

14

Nissan Motorsport            

Rick Kelly         

Nissan Altima      

25

22:24.7058

15

Nissan Motorsport            

Michael Caruso     

Nissan Altima      

25

22:27.4640

16

Repair Management Aust Racing

Nick Percat        

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:28.6809

17

Erebus Motorsport V8         

Will Davison       

Mercedes E63 AMG   

25

22:28.8766

18

DJR Team Penske              

Scott Pye          

Ford Falcon FG/X   

25

22:29.8759

19

Team BOC                     

Jason Bright       

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:30.8257

20

Wilson Security Racing GRM   

David Wall         

Volvo S60          

25

22:32.9916

21

Team Cooldrive               

Tim Blanchard      

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:36.2986

22

Walkinshaw Racing            

Lee Holdsworth     

Holden Commodore VF

25

22:44.1996

23

Nissan Motorsport            

Todd Kelly         

Nissan Altima      

25

22:49.7871

DNF

Erebus Motorsport V8         

Ashley Walsh       

Mercedes E63 AMG   

11

19:21.5359

DNF

Wilson Security Racing GRM   

Scott McLaughlin   

Volvo S60          

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