Supercars stewards have handed James Moffat a time penalty for causing the multi-car contact on the opening lap in Saturday’s Townsville 400 race.

The Garry Rogers Motorsport driver made contact with the rear of Todd Kelly’s Nissan under braking for Turn 2, pitching Kelly into the rear of Moffat’s teammate Garth Tander, who in turn clouted Tim Slade’s Brad Jones Racing Holden. Slade then hit championship leader Fabian Coulthard, tipping the DJR Team Penske driver into a spin that dropped him to the back of the field.

The incident caused significant damage to a number of cars, with the most significant being the race-ending battering to the front end of Kelly’s Altima, and stewards saw fit to hand Moffat a 15-second post-race time penalty that drops him out of tenth place.

Coulthard managed to fight his way back to an eleventh-placed finish in a race won by teammate Scott McLaughlin, who reclaimed the lead of the Drivers’ Championship standings while Coulthard fell to third in the standings.

Coulthard is now classified tenth as a result of Moffat’s penalty, reducing the points gap to McLaughlin from 68 points to 62. Moffat drops to thirteenth in the updated race classification.

Also penalised were Dale Wood (Erebus Motorsport) and Michael Caruso (Nissan), who were handed more costly 25-second time penalties for spinning their rear wheels in the pit lane. Their penalties drop them to 15th and 16th respectively.

2017 Australian Supercars Watpac Townsville 400 – Race 13 Top-10 Finishers (70 laps)
Pos Driver Team / Entry Result
1. Scott McLaughlin Shell V-Power DJR Team Penske 1:28:19.742
2. Jamie Whincup Red Bull Holden Racing Team + 4.096
3. Mark Winterbottom The Bottle-O Racing Team + 15.406
4. Chaz Mostert SuperCheap Auto Racing + 20.259
5. Cameron Waters Monster Energy Racing + 28.522
6. Craig Lowndes TeamVortex + 34.169
7. Shane van Gisbergen Red Bull Holden Racing Team + 37.022
8. Garth Tander Wilson Security Racing GRM + 37.117
9. David Reynolds Erebus Penrite Racing + 37.596
10. Fabian Coulthard Shell V-Power DJR Team Penske + 39.916

Image via LAT Images

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Geoff Burke

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