Image credit: autonewsinfo.com

Jamie Whincup survived a last lap sprint, to claim his 90th V8 Supercar win and 1st of the 2015 season.

Whincup who had started from pole position looked unbeatable, leading the race from the drop of the green, only losing it during the pit stop cycle.

But the 32 year-olds advantage was wiped out when Will Davidson’s Erebus Mercedes ground to a halt with engine problems, causing the the safety car to be deployed on lap 30, giving second place Chaz Mostert one lap to pass Whincup, but the six time champion held his nerve to secure the maximum 75 points from the opening round of the season.

The win puts Whincup joint second on the all-time list of race wins with V8 Supercar legend Mark Skaife, and only seven behind team mate Craig Lowndes.

Mostert claimed an impressive second after starting from forth on the grid. The Pepsi Max driver was handed third at the start when Scott McLaughlin’s Volvo released it’s oil on to the track causing the the Kiwi to spin out on the warm-up lap.

The new Ford Falcon showed good race pace on it’s debut, meaning Mostert was able to jump Fabian Coulthard in the pits and hold off Freightliner Racing Holden for the rest of the race.

Craig Lowdnes secured a good points tally for Red Bull Racing by coming home in fifth.

While Mark Winterbottom in the second Pepsi Max Ford was able to hold off Shane van Gisbergen for sixth despite having a damaged front bumper for the last eight laps, Holden Racing Team’s Garth Tander rolled in seventh and James Courtney (10th) were split by Tim Slade and Lee Holdsworth.

It was a disappointing result for Holdsworth who was set for a sixth place finish to celebrate his new partnership with Charlie Schwerkolt and Walkinshaw Racing but dropped to ninth after out-breaking himself on the last lap.

James Moffat led the Nissan Altima runners home in 11th place, while Marcus Ambrose finished 16th on his V8 Supercar return.

Charlie Price – charlie@sportscarglobal.com