Jamie Whincup reclaimed a narrow V8 Supercar Championship lead by winning the opening race at the Hidden Valley circuit in Darwin.
The Triple Eight Commodore driver broke a seven-race winning streak from Ford Performance Racing, with his pace during a long first stint on the harder compound Dunlop tyre crucial to the victory.
The FPR duo of Will Davison and Mark Winterbottom ran the same strategy as Whincup, starting on the hard tyre and then switching to the soft for the sprint to the end, but simply lost too much ground in the first stint. They were forced settle for second and third respectively, with Davison falling two points behind Whincup in the championship.
Craig Lowndes finished an incredible fourth after a difficult afternoon in the other Triple Eight Commodore. Starting from the 10th row of the grid, Lowndes found himself caught up in a lap three fracas. But despite the spin he was able to salvage a position after running two stints on the soft tyre.
David Reynolds finished fifth in his FPR Falcon, after leading the opening 20 laps of the race thanks to starting on the soft tyre. He wound up leading home the two Stone Brothers Racing Falcons of Tim Slade and Shane van Gisbergen, while their other team-mate Lee Holdsworth made it a solid day for SBR with 10th.
Meanwhile, the afternoon was all too brief for Kelly Racing's David Russell. Standing in for the injured Greg Murphy, Russell's Commodore was damaged during the lap three incident. He and Garry Rogers Commodore driver Michael Caruso retired on the spot.