McLaughlin and Le Broq share wins in Supercars Eseries opener

Scott McLaughlin and Jack Le Brocq shared the first two Supercars All Stars Eseries wins on the Phillip Island circuit

McLaughlin and Le Broq share wins in Supercars Eseries opener

McLaughlin was dominant in the opening race of the Esports contest created to entertain motorsport fans in the coronavirus-induced period without racing, leading home DJR Team Penske team-mate Fabian Coulthard by a healthy 3.3s.

The reigning Supercars champion was helped by having both of his toughest rivals, Anton De Pasquale and Shane van Gisbergen, lose ground on the opening lap.

Erebus Holden driver De Pasquale, who started from pole, looked to rub doors with 2016 series champion van Gisbergen on the run to the tight Turn 4 right-hander, the experienced sim racers dropping back to eighth and 12th respectively.

McLaughlin's life was made even easier when Coulthard slipped into second at the end of the first lap, the two team-mates pair able to cruise to a one-two finish.

Tickford Ford driver Cam Waters ended up third after moving by Andre Heimgartner mid-way through the nine-lapper, as the Kelly Racing driver made it an all-Mustang top four.

Jake Kostecki was the best-placed Holden in fifth, van Gisbergen easing past Nick Percat for sixth, while De Pasquale recovered to eighth, behind Percat.

There were some spectacular crashes early on, sim racing rookie Rick Kelly sent into orbit down the front straight after clashing with David Reynolds while 2015 champion Mark Winterbottom also had dramas on lap one.

The second race, a 16-lap reverse grid battle, boiled down to a final lap tussle between De Pasquale and Le Brocq.

The pair came from opposite ends of the field; Le Brocq started from the front row and led every single lap while De Pasquale used an early stop to get himself into clean air after starting deep in the field.

With five laps to go De Pasquale had moved to within 2s of the leader, before steadily hunting the Tickford Ford driver down over the closing laps.

However a last-gasp play for the win went wrong, De Pasquale nudging Le Brocq wide at the final corner.

Although De Pasquale finished first on the road, driving standards observer Craig Baird wasn't amused and swiftly slapped De Pasquale with a 30s penalty which handed victory to Le Brocq.

Chaz Mostert inherited second, while Walkinshaw teammate Bryce Fullwood held off a charging Scott McLaughlin to complete the podium.

Heimgartner and Zane Goddard were fifth and sixth, while van Gisbergen had to recover to from an early trip into the wall after clashing with Mustang pair Lee Holdsworth and Will Davison to finish seventh.

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