Pither extends Super2 Series lead after Dumbrell error

Chris Pither

Chris Pither has stretched his Dunlop Super2 Series lead by finishing runner-up in Race 1 in Newcastle after Paul Dumbrell came unstuck trying to chase the Kiwi down.

Brodie Kostecki took the lead from the outside of the front row and held on to it after a Safety Car restart to claim an all-the-way win as Pither was handed a break when Dumbrell ran off at the top of Watt Street as he closed in.

Instead, Pither finished a somewhat distant second to Brodie Kostecki, while Dumbrell was fifth, meaning the margin at the top of the standings grows to 59 points.

Pither therefore need only finish seventh in tomorrow’s race to guarantee that the series is his.

Brodie Kostecki bested Pither when the lights went out and the Armor All Pole-sitter, who faced an investigation for passing under yellow flags in qualifying, slotted into second.

Eggleston Motorsport team-mates Will Brown and Dumbrell took up third and fourth, respectively.

Behind, Dean Fiore sailed down the Turn 1 run-off area after copping a sizeable shunt from Thomas Randle in the braking zone.

The damage left both the former’s #23 MW Motorsport Nissan Altima and the latter’s #5 Tickford Racing FGX Falcon stranded and necessitated a Safety Car.

Fiore’s team-mate Garry Jacobson continued in seventh, having taken an impact with the boot of his #100 Nissan Altima in the incident.

Dumbrell went to the outside of Brown for the restart but the latter ran wide in the #38 VF Commodore and compromised the #88 VF Commodore’s run up Watt Street, allowing Shae Davies to take over fourth position.

Brown pinched a brake a lap later at Nobbys Hairpin and gave up third position to Davies, before Davies bowled a wide at the same corner three laps later.

He glanced off the wall and copped a side-on hit from Dumbrell which put the #67 Paul Morris Motorsport FGX Falcon back into the concrete and ultimately out of business.

Dumbrell continued and was handed third position by Brown as they climbed Watt Street on Lap 12, at which time Pither was more than three seconds up the road.

Pither was the slowest of the top three and Dumbrell had taken around two seconds out of the gap between the two in the next four laps.

However, Dumbrell threw that away when he locked a brake and failed to make Turn 2 on Lap 16, dropping to fifth.

He would have been sixth if not for Mason Barbera going off the race track in sympathy in the #99 Garry Rogers Motorsport VF Commodore.

That mistake effectively decided the top two as Brodie Kostecki took a second race win in the #57 Kostecki Brothers Racing VF Commodore.

Brown held off Jacobson, who remains mathematically in the fight for the series, to finish third, with Dumbrell almost six seconds behind the 2016 title winner when the chequered flag came out a lap early after 19 laps.

Zane Goddard rose to a career-best sixth in the #8 Brad Jones Racing VF Commodore after the multiple incidents in the middle of the top 10.

Among those was the Lap 6 goings on between Kurt Kostecki (#55 Kostecki Brothers Racing VF Commodore) and Macauley Jones (#14 Brad Jones Racing VF Commodore), after the former passed the latter at Turn 8 only to be unloaded at Turn 9.

Kurt Kostecki went on to finish 18th and Jones one position back after serving a drive-through penalty.

Jordan Boys (#49 Image Racing VF Commodore) finished seventh, with Barbera, Jake Kostecki (#56 Kostecki Brothers Racing VF Commodore), and Nathan Morcom (#54 Eggleston Motorsport VF Commodore) rounding out the top 10.

Alex Rullo’s series hopes are formally over with his 12th position finish from last on the grid, after shunting his #62 Nissan Altima into team-mate Jacobson in qualifying.

The next Super2 session is Armor All Qualifying for Race 2 tomorrow at 1020 local time/AEDT.

Results: Race 1

Pos Num Team/Sponsor Driver Car Laps Split
1 57 Arcoplate Racing Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore VF 19 26:59.8336
2 44 Wilson Security PAYCE GRM Chris Pither Holden Commodore VF 19 27:04.0480
3 38 Eggleston Motorsport William Brown Holden Commodore VF 19 27:09.4838
4 100 MEGA Fuels / MWM Garry Jacobson Nissan Altima 19 27:10.0776
5 88 Eggleston Motorsport Paul Dumbrell Holden Commodore VF 19 27:16.0566
6 8 BGD Architects Zane Goddard Holden Commodore VF 19 27:18.9343
7 49 Dynamic Supplies Jordan Boys Holden Commodore VF 19 27:19.3602
8 99 Wilson Security PAYCE GRM Mason Barbera Holden Commodore VF 19 27:19.8699
9 56 Arcoplate Racing Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore VF 19 27:21.3528
10 54 Eggleston Motorsport Nathan Morcom Holden Commodore VF 19 27:22.9036
11 21 SCT Logistics Jack Smith Holden Commodore VF 19 27:23.7505
12 62 Land Surveys / MWM Alex Rullo Nissan Altima 19 27:24.4901
13 16 Middy’s Electrical Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore VF 19 27:26.0739
14 15 Auto One Racing Adam Marjoram Holden Commodore VF 19 27:27.9111
15 50 Motorsport Parts Aust Racing Kristian Lindbom Holden Commodore VF 19 27:30.7321
16 63 Eggleston Motorsport Dominic Storey Holden Commodore VF 19 27:32.0944
17 18 Auto One Albury Matthew Chahda Holden Commodore VF 19 27:32.5954
18 55 Arcoplate Racing Kurt Kostecki Holden Commodore VF 19 27:41.0433
19 14 PAYCE Macauley Jones Holden Commodore VF 19 27:48.3285
20 10 Grove Hire Brenton Grove Holden Commodore VF 19 27:53.7223
DNF 67 Paul Morris Motorsport Shae Davies Ford Falcon FG/X 9 15:14.3393
DNF 5 Skye Sands Thomas Randle Ford Falcon FG/X
DNF 23 Sitech-Trimble / MWM Dean Fiore Nissan Altima

Series points

Pos Driver Pts
1 Chris Pither 1522
2 Paul Dumbrell 1463
3 Garry Jacobson 1393
4 Alex Rullo 1328
5 Brodie Kostecki 1202
6 William Brown 1068
7 Dean Fiore 1034
8 Kurt Kostecki 1010
9 Macauley Jones 968
10 Thomas Randle 950
11 Jack Smith 939
12 Shae Davies 912
13 Mason Barbera 849
14 Zane Goddard 835
15 Dominic Storey 788
16 Adam Marjoram 779
17 Bryce Fullwood 755
18 Jake Kostecki 719
19 Nathan Morcom 691
20 Matthew Chahda 688
21 Brenton Grove 615
22 Jordan Boys 525
23 Tyler Greenbury 230
24 Earl Bamber 156
25 Ricky Capo 96
26 Kristian Lindbom 60
27 Gerard McLeod 51
28 Jaie Robson 48

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