Paul Dumbrell has ensured that the Dunlop Series will go down to the final race as he won the opening heat at Sydney Olympic Park.
Series leader Cameron Waters finished eighth after an incident in qualifying, and thus sees his margin pegged back to 89 points with 150 going to the winner of tomorrow’s finale.
Dumbrell skipped out to a second-plus lead over Eggleston Motorsport teammate Garry Jacobcon by the end of the opening lap.
Andrew Jones fell from second on the grid to fifth, spectacularly smoking up the rears of his Commodore when his clutch slipped in the long hold at the start.
Dumbrell meanwhile doubled his lead on the second tour, before the field came under the control of the safety car due to the stricken Aaron McGill.
McGill, in an incident not captured by television, had sustained heavy rear damage at the Turn 2/3/4 chicane, and gesticulated at Liam McAdam as the field filed past under yellows.
With the safety car spending eight laps on track as recovery crews attended to the significant fluid spill, only one lap remained of the time certain encounter upon the restart.
Dumbrell ultimately beat Jacobson to the finish line by just under eight tenths of a second.
Todd Hazelwood took third position on the final lap, criss-crossing a defensive James Golding out of Turn 1, while Jack Le Brocq relieved Jones of fifth with a handful of corners to run.
Shae Davies, Waters, Drew Russell, and Bryce Fullwood in his first start in an MW Motorsport Falcon completed the top ten.
Qualifying for Race 2 will be held from 9:55 tomorrow, ahead of the race proper to close the season at 14:20.
Result: Dunlop Series Race 1
|1||Eggleston Motorsport||Paul Dumbrell||Holden Commodore VE2||11||26:53.2919|
|2||Eggleston Motorsport||Garry Jacobson||Holden Commodore VE2||11||26:54.0853|
|3||iseek Racing||Todd Hazelwood||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:54.6153|
|4||Gippsland Body Building GRM||James Golding||Holden Commodore VE2||11||26:55.1699|
|5||Ice Break Racing||Jack Le Brocq||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:55.8421|
|6||Alliance Truck Parts||Andrew Jones||Holden Commodore VE2||11||26:56.1737|
|7||Davbridge Constructions||Shae Davies||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:56.9055|
|8||TEAM ENZED PRA||Cameron Waters||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:57.4237|
|9||Plus Fitness / Go Karts Go||Aaren Russell||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:57.7309|
|10||Middy’s Data & Electrical||Bryce Fullwood||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:58.1736|
|11||Alphabet/Wynns||Josh Kean||Holden Commodore VE2||11||26:58.6330|
|12||Hayman Reese Racing||Jonathon Webb||Ford Falcon FG||11||26:58.9260|
|13||Fujitsu Racing||Renee Gracie||Ford Falcon FG||11||27:00.9662|
|14||Cavalier Homes/EMA||Matthew Chahda||Ford Falcon FG||11||27:01.5063|
|15||Super Black Racing||Simon Evans||Ford Falcon FG||11||27:01.7880|
|16||PAYCE||Macauley Jones||Holden Commodore VE2||11||27:02.3759|
|17||Street Fighter Performance Upg||Dan Day||Ford Falcon FG||11||27:05.8507|
|18||Eggleston Motorsport||Liam McAdam||Holden Commodore VE2||11||27:06.5740|
|DNF||Battery World Racing||Aaron McGill||Holden Commodore VE2||2||3:17.7170|