Jamiw Whincup won the opening race at Winton

V8 Supercars championship leader Jamie Whincup has claimed fifth championship win of the 2011 season after crossing the finish line first in the opening race of this weekend’s Winton round. The podium was completed by Lee Holdsworth and Steven Johnson.

Meanwhile, Whincup’s pole-sitting team-mate Craig Lowndes had a shocker of a race a finished eleventh.

Lowndes’ problems began with a poor getaway off the line that immediately saw him fall to fourth behind Johnson, Holdsworth and Whincup.

Watch the video highlights from today’s V8 Supercars race at Winton Raceway

Whincup managed to squeeze by Holdsworth on lap 13, and then about chasing race-leader Johnson, whom he passed during the round of pit stops. Johnson emerged behind Holdsworth and the order ran in that fashion until the finish, although Johnson harried Holdsworth for the rest of the race.

Lowndes’ hopes of a podium finish were dashed when he was unable to get any temperature in his tyres after his pit stop, which left him vulnerable to overtaking moves by several drivers. His misery was compounded when he took a trip off-road at Turn 11, leaving him to finish outside the top ten.

Fourth place instead when to Rick Kelly, who drove an excellent race from 12th on the grid. He finished ahead of Paul Dumbrell, Alex Davison and Jason Bright, who enjoyed a spirited battle with HRT’s Garth Tander (who finished 12th).

Another to salvage a good result was James Courtney, who gambled on a late pit strategy after a disastrous qualifying session that saw him 19th on the grid. He briefly led during the pit stop sequence and finished the race in eighth place.


V8 Supercars Winton 300 Final Classification (Race 1 – 40 laps):

  Driver Entry / Team Result
1. Jamie Whincup Holden Team Vodafone / Triple 8 Race Engineering 1:01:09.0173
2. Lee Holdsworth Holden Fujitsu Racing / Garry Rogers Motorsport + 4.8378
3. Steven Johnson Ford Jim Beam / Dick Johnson Racing + 4.8708
4. Rick Kelly Holden Jack Daniel’s / Kelly Racing + 7.7062
5. Paul Dumbrell Ford The Bottle-O Racing Team / Rod Nash + 10.4241
6. Alex Davison Ford Irwin / Stone Brothers Racing + 12.9373
7. Jason Bright Holden Team BOC / Brad Jones Racing + 13.0886
8. James Courtney Holden TOLL / Holden Racing Team + 16.0043
9. Mark Winterbottom Ford Orrcon Steel / Ford Performance Racing + 18.0781
10. Fabian Coulthard Holden Bundaberg / Walkinsaw Racing + 18.9470
11. Craig Lowndes Holden Team Vodafone / Triple 8 Race Engineering + 22.4902
12. Garth Tander Holden TOLL / Holden Racing Team + 23.5912
13. Will Davison Ford Trading Post / Ford Performance Racing + 24.2854
14. Shane van Gisbergen Ford SP Tools / Stone Brothers Racing + 25.3740
15. Tim Slade Ford Lucky 7 / Stone Brothers Racing + 26.7296
16. Michael Caruso Holden Fujitsu Racing / Garry Rogers Motorsport + 27.1367
17. Russell Ingall Holden Supercheap Auto / Paul Morris Motorsport + 28.2857
18. Greg Murphy Holden Pepsi Max Crew / Kelly Racing + 28.5852
19. James Moffat Ford Jim Beam / Dick Johnson Racing + 30.7861
20. Karl Reindler Holden Fair Dinkum Sheds / Brad Jones Racing + 36.2968
21. Todd Kelly Holden Jack Daniel’s / Kelly Racing + 36.7260
22. David Reynolds Holden Stratco Racing / Kelly Racing + 37.8705
23. Steve Owen Holden VIP Petfoods / Paul Morris Motorsport + 41.3059
24. Jonathon Webb Ford Mother Energy Racing Team / Tekno + 43.3101
25. Dean Fiore Ford Triple F Racing + 1:06.2555
26. Tony D’Alberto Ford Wilson Security / Tony D’Alberto Racing 6 laps behind
DNF. Warren Luff Holden Gulf Western Oil Racing / Lucas Dumbrell 1 lap
DNF. Jason Bargwanna Holden Jana Living / Brad Jones Racing 0 laps

[Image via Team Vodafone, video via V8 Supercars]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.