The Bend Supercars: McLaughlin cruises to Race 3 win

Scott McLaughlin is now firmly in control of the Supercars title fight thanks to a comfortable Race 3 win at The Bend.

The Penske Ford driver was untroubled across the 24-lap journey, helped by having teammate Fabian Coulthard slot into second at the start.

From there the Shell Mustangs were able to control the race, McLaughlin running two even 12-lap stints in what ended up as a 1.8s win in a Penske one-two.

“The car is fantastic to drive, a pleasure to drive,” said the Kiwi. 

“I think track positioned helped, being in front. It was important I got the start, and thankfully I did.”

Jamie Whincup limited the damage to his title hopes with third place, his only appearance on the podium for the weekend.

It didn’t come easy, though, Whincup needing to overhaul a rapid Anton De Pasquale – who started all the way down in 18th – in the second stint.

He needed two cracks at clearing the Erebus Holden, the first resulting in contact between the pair at Turn 6. Whincup redressed the position before getting the job done two laps from home.

McLaughlin’s win, however, meant Whincup dropped points in all three races, the gap now 215 with four races, worth a total of 600 points, to go.

Shane van Gisbergen had a shocker in the final heat, the Race 2 winner sparking an early pile-up when he tipped Andre Heimgartner into a spin.

That led to heavy contact for the likes of James Courtney and Mark Winterbottom, those two drivers taken out of the race.

Van Gisbergen was hit with a 15-second time penalty for his efforts, 14th the best he could manage by the finish.

Heimgartner, meanwhile, recovered well from the van Gisbergen hiccup, charging back to seventh behind De Pasquale, Cam Waters and Scott Pye.

Race 3 results:

Cla # Driver Car Gap
1 17 Scott McLaughlin Ford Mustang GT  
2 12 Fabian Coulthard Ford Mustang GT 1.865
3 88 Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 5.758
4 99 Anton De Pasquale Holden Commodore ZB 8.601
5 6 Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT 11.032
6 20 Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 11.371
7 7 Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 17.681
8 15 Rick Kelly Ford Mustang GT 18.227
9 9 David Reynolds Holden Commodore ZB 18.815
10 14 Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 19.200
11 5 Lee Holdsworth Ford Mustang GT 25.724
12 3 Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB 26.558
13 35 Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 26.981
14 97 Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 27.027
15 22 Chris Pither Holden Commodore ZB 29.804
16 25 Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 34.924
17 8 Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 35.517
18 19 Alex Davison Holden Commodore ZB 37.618
19 2 Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 38.063
20 34 Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 51.401
21 55 Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 54.721
22 4 Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB  
  44 James Courtney Ford Mustang GT  
  18 Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB  
View full results

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