Supercars Townsville: Waters holds off van Gisbergen in finale

Cam Waters held off Shane van Gisbergen in a nail-biting final race around the Reid Park circuit in Townsville.

Supercars Townsville: Waters holds off van Gisbergen in finale

The pair staged a see-sawing battle across the 39-lap journey, Waters leading the first few laps before van Gisbergen barged past at the last corner.

Van Gisbergen controlled the remainder of the first stint, which came to an abrupt end when Macauley Jones clattered into wall at Turn 10 on lap 17.

Triple Eight responded to the subsequent safety car by bringing van Gisbergen straight into the pits, while Tickford rolled the dice on Waters being able to get to the control line before the safety car.

The bold strategic move paid off, Waters able to promptly complete another lap, take his mandatory service and emerge with the lead.

Van Gisbergen dropped back to third behind Will Davison, who had stopped three laps before the safety car, but got back into second a few corners after the lap 24 restart.

He then quickly latched onto the back of Waters to begin a wheel-to-wheel battle that basically didn't stop until the chequered flag.

While van Gisbergen looked the quicker of the two, Waters was brilliant in defence as he held off an unrelenting challenge.

It wasn't until a couple of laps from home that van Gisbergen seemed to call off the challenge, Waters winning the race by eight-tenths.

"I don't really know what happened with the pitstop," said Waters. "But we had a pretty good race car, I was hanging on to Shane in that first stint. I came out in front of him and I was pushing as quick as I could. 

"I had a mega battle with him, it was really cool. It's awesome to get one on him. It's awesome racing Shane, he's so good at racing people but there's always a fair bit of respect there. We were side-by-side in Turn 2 and we were giving each other the shakas, having a bit of fun with it."

Van Gisbergen was equally enthused by he battle, despite not finding a way through.

"It was awesome fun," said the Kiwi. "What a great battle. He put it all in the right spots. Down the straights I was giving him the thumbs up. I really enjoyed it. 

"I would have loved to have won, I was a little bit unlucky with the safety car, but that's the way it goes."

Davison came home third, just 1.3s behind the lead pair, while Todd Hazelwood put in an impressive drive to score fourth place for Brad Jones Racing.

Anton De Pasquale finished fifth after making up a couple of spots shortly after the restart, followed by Jamie Whincup, James Courtney and Mark Winterbottom.

Shane van Gisbergen now leads the series by 276 points. 

Van Gisbergen wins all-Triple Eight thriller in race two

Earlier on Sunday, van Gisbergen held off a fierce attack from Triple Eight team-mate Whincup to win the second heat of the Townsville SuperSprint.

The two Red Bull Holden drivers were locked in battle for the majority of the race, van Gisbergen shadowing his team-mate across the first stint.

At the stops the battle kicked up a gear when Whincup took on three new tyres, while van Gisbergen went for a faster two-tyre stop to give him track position.

Initially he had around four seconds up his sleeve, however the gap quickly shrunk thanks to Whincup's superior tyre grip.

On lap 21 Whincup started his play to reclaim the lead, van Gisbergen forced to defend into the final corner. It was the same for the next few laps, Whincup finally getting alongside the #97 on lap 25.

But van Gisbergen's defence was up to the task, the Kiwi holding the inside line down to Turn 2 to keep Whincup at bay.

That took the sting out of Whincup's attack, the seven-time series champion then dropping back with his tyre advantage gone.

Van Gisbergen's final winning margin was 4.5s.

"It was awesome," said van Gisbergen. "We chose to take two tyres to try and get in front and all I had to do was keep him behind for three or four laps until he toasted his fresh one. It was a pretty cool battle, pretty tense. I'm sure there were some tight moments in the garage, but it was good fun."

Whincup added: "I guess the whole pitlane wants us to have a blue, but it's not going to happen. Great team points for both cars.

"I wouldn't be surprised if something in my car is bent, I really struggled to brake probably about four laps from the stop. And I had quite a bad vibration.

"I did what I could at the start to try and gap away from everyone to minimise the stacking risk for both cars to give us both an advantage before the stop. But I probably burnt myself out trying to play the team game."

It was a dominant showing from Triple Eight, with Chaz Mostert the best of the rest in third, 8s behind the winner. He spent the back end of the race under serious fire from Davison, the pair crossing the line nose-to-tail.

Hazelwood was an impressive fifth ahead of Scott Pye, Brodie Kostecki, De Pasquale and David Reynolds.

Townsville Supercars - Race 2 Results:

Cla Driver Car Laps Gap
1 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 39  
2 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 39 4.547
3 Australia Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 39 8.125
4 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 39 8.508
5 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 39 17.445
6 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 39 19.244
7 Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 39 24.099
8 Australia Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 39 28.081
9 Australia David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 39 29.007
10 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 39 32.524
11 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 39 37.723
12 Australia Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 39 38.734
13 Australia Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 39 43.283
14 Australia Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 39 43.365
15 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 39 48.557
16 Australia James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 39 51.952
17 Australia Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 39 56.808
18 Australia Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 39 58.808
19 Australia Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 39 59.044
20 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 39 1'00.496
21 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 38  
22 Australia Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 33  
23 Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 26  
24 Australia Will Brown Holden Commodore ZB 25  

Townsville Supercars - Race 3 Results:

Cla Driver Car Laps Gap
1 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 39  
2 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 39 0.876
3 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 39 1.357
4 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 39 6.653
5 Australia Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 39 7.924
6 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 39 12.300
7 Australia James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 39 15.478
8 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 39 15.898
9 Australia Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 39 17.877
10 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 39 18.789
11 Australia Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 39 24.360
12 Australia Will Brown Holden Commodore ZB 39 24.931
13 Australia Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 39 25.654
14 Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 39 27.178
15 Australia Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 39 27.615
16 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 39 28.884
17 Australia Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 39 29.631
18 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 39 29.971
19 Australia Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 39 35.481
20 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 39 36.259
21 Australia Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 39 36.294
22 Australia Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 39 39.422
23 Australia David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT 32  
  Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 16  
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