The Bend Supercars: De Pasquale and Waters kick-start season with victories

Anton De Pasquale scored his first win for Dick Johnson Racing while Cameron Waters held off series leader Shane van Gisbergen to claim victory in the pair of Sunday races at The Bend Motorsport Park.

The Bend Supercars: De Pasquale and Waters kick-start season with victories

De Pasquale put in a controlled drive to score a second career win and first since shifting to the famous DJR Ford outfit. 

He was joined on the podium by teammate Will Davison and Triple Eight's van Gisbergen. 

The race got off to a spectacular start with a multi-car clash at Turn 6.

The drama started when Andre Heimgartner ran Tim Slade wide, Slade then spooking Chaz Mostert as he bounced off the exit kerb.

As Mostert moved left he tagged old foe Cam Waters, tearing the back right out of the Monster Mustang.

Waters and Mostert both limped back to the pits, the former done for the day while the latter did get back out to at least bank a few points.

Behind them there was more contact, David Reynolds tipping Nick Percat into a spin. 

Out front De Pasquale quickly pulled a small gap over Davison and Andre Heimgartner, although he threw his early advantage away on Lap 3 when he locked up on the way into Turn 1.

He was lucky to hold on to the lead, De Pasquale re-establishing a one-second gap before pitting on Lap 7.

Davison opted to run a bit longer, emerging from his Lap 11 service behind an early-stopping James Courtney.

He cleared Courtney three laps later before closing up on the back of De Pasquale.

The two DJR cars didn't have things all their own way, though, with van Gisbergen becoming a factor as the race wore on.

Starting outside the Top 10 the Kiwi had made remarkable progress early in the race as he dodged the madness around him, before going for a very long first stint.

He finally stopped on Lap 16, popping out in third before using his superior tyre condition to run down the Shell Fords.

Van Gisbergen's speed was ultimately a reprieve for De Pasquale as Davison was forced to go defensive in the closing laps.

That left the leader free to charge to a 1s win, his first in a Mustang and Ford's 400th in Supercars. 

"We know how much that means to all the fans," said De Pasquale. 

"We’ve got massive support behind me and Will. I’m loving that and loving racing for the Shell V-Power Racing guys. 

"They’ve given me a good car. We’ve got a one-two. It’s pretty cool, it’s a cool day."

Davison held on for second as van Gisbergen settled for third ahead of James Courtney.

Brodie Kostecki, who was part of the Reynolds/Percat clash on the first lap, came home fifth ahead of Bryce Fullwood.

Race 1 winner Heimgartner finished seventh, having fallen out of contention for a podium when he stalled on his way out of his pit bay.

Wildcard entrant Thomas Randle was an impressive eighth ahead of Team 18 pair Mark Winterbottom and Scott Pye. Jamie Whincup could only manage to come home in 11th spot. 

Waters held off van Gisbergen to win the last of three races.

The Tickford Racing driver inherited the lead on Lap 3 when polesitter De Pasquale slowed with an engine misfire.

He spent the rest of the first stint leading Jamie Whincup before taking his mandatory service for new rear tyres on Lap 12.

While he had the likes of Whincup and Will Davison covered, as usual van Gisbergen emerged as a contender with an overcut strategy.

The Kiwi stayed out until Lap 16 before taking on new tyres on the left-hand side of his car for the run home.

He resumed right behind Waters, the pair staging a tense battle for the lead that went right to the flag.

There was no way through for van Gisbergen though, Waters holding on to win by six tenths of a second.

Speaking post-race he said the win marked a sweet comeback for the Tickford team after his car was destroyed in today's earlier race. 

"I’ve got no words," he said. 

"We had a fast car all weekend. We were quick in the wet and then you know what happened in the first race today. 

"The boys worked so bloody hard to fix the car, and not just fix it, but give me one that’s capable of winning. 

"The boys earned this one. They gave me a good pitstop and it was up to me."

Davison rounded out the podium thanks an undercut strategy that helped him jump fourth-placed Whincup during the stops.

Mostert finished fifth followed by Percat, who seemed to run out of fuel on the cool-down lap. He was pushed back to the pits by Brad Jones Racing teammate Todd Hazelwood.

Slade finished seventh as Courtney, Pye and Heimgartner rounded out the Top 10.

Van Gisbergen's series lead is now 190 points over teammate Whincup.

Race 2 Results

Cla Driver Laps Time Gap Interval
1 Australia Anton De Pasquale 24 45'18.438    
2 Australia Will Davison 24 45'19.386 0.947 0.947
3 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen 24 45'19.872 1.433 0.486
4 Australia James Courtney 24 45'24.888 6.449 5.016
5 Brodie Kostecki 24 45'26.082 7.643 1.194
6 Australia Bryce Fullwood 24 45'26.614 8.175 0.532
7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner 24 45'32.432 13.994 5.818
8 Australia Thomas Randle 24 45'32.858 14.419 0.425
9 Australia Mark Winterbottom 24 45'33.652 15.213 0.794
10 Australia Scott Pye 24 45'35.620 17.181 1.967
11 Australia Jamie Whincup 24 45'35.956 17.517 0.336
12 Australia Jack Le Brocq 24 45'41.150 22.711 5.193
13 Australia Will Brown 24 45'42.463 24.024 1.313
14 Australia Garry Jacobson 24 45'43.363 24.924 0.899
15 Australia Tim Slade 24 45'43.600 25.161 0.237
16 Australia Kurt Kostecki 24 45'43.913 25.474 0.312
17 Australia Nick Percat 24 45'45.917 27.478 2.004
18 Australia Jake Kostecki 24 45'46.754 28.315 0.836
19 Australia Todd Hazelwood 24 45'56.764 38.325 10.010
20 Australia Zane Goddard 24 45'58.756 40.317 1.992
21 Australia Jack Smith 24 46'10.827 52.388 12.071
22 Australia David Reynolds 21 47'01.561 3 Laps 3 Laps
  New Zealand Fabian Coulthard 23 44'35.090 1 Lap  
  Australia Chaz Mostert 4 21'16.626 20 Laps 19 Laps
  Australia Cameron Waters 1 2'08.064 23 Laps 3 Laps
  Australia Macauley Jones 1 3'08.087 23 Laps 1'00.023

Race 3 Results

Cla # Driver Car Time
1 6 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT  
2 97 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 0.696
3 17 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 6.658
4 88 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 7.858
5 25 Australia Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 11.703
6 8 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 12.806
7 3 Australia Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 13.177
8 44 Australia James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 14.839
9 20 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 15.100
10 7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 17.986
11 99 Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 19.196
12 26 Australia David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 20.529
13 14 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 23.243
14 2 Australia Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 26.713
15 55 Australia Thomas Randle Ford Mustang GT 28.446
16 34 Australia Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 30.226
17 19 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 30.849
18 18 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 31.136
19 4 Australia Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 32.525
20 96 Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 35.928
21 35 Australia Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 45.415
22 5 Australia Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 1'00.597
23 27 Australia Kurt Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 1'17.472
24 9 Australia Will Brown Holden Commodore ZB 1 lap
  22 Australia Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB  
  11 Australia Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT  
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