« on: March 05, 2017, 11:12:26 AM »
Van Gisbergen claims thrilling 2017 Clipsal 500 crown
Defending Virgin Australia Supercars Champion Shane Van Gisbergen has capped off a dominant weekend in Adelaide, claiming his second Clipsal 500 crown with a win in dramatic circumstances this afternoon.
It was another memorable Clipsal 500, with rising star Scott McLaughlin holding the lead until the 75th lap of 78. With Van Gisbergen closing in over the final laps, McLaughlin locked his brakes, allowing Van Gisbergen to pass and claim his second Clipsal 500 title.
“Just as I got to him, I saw his big moment,” Van Gisbergen said.
The 28-year old says there is still plenty of improvement to make to his car following the opening round of racing.
“We had a pretty average test … we still had vibrations this week, but the car was fast.”
Van Gisbergen started slowly from his ARMOR ALL Pole Position in today’s race and was made to work for his win in front of McLaughlin and Chaz Mostert who finished second and third in today’s race respectively.
McLaughlin didn’t hide his emotions after going within three laps of a dream debut with his new Shell V-Power Racing Team.
“I thought today could’ve been the day we got our first win, but there’s a lot of promise there,” McLaughlin said.
“I’m feeling really confident, but I’m just gutted – you lead a whole race and then you lose it.”
Defending Clipsal 500 champion and South Australian local Nick Percat was forced to retire early in the race due to mechanical problems, while the first female full-time driver in the Supercars era, Simona De Silvestro finished 23rd and Alex Rullo who is now the youngest driver in Supercars history finished in 25th following his first weekend of racing. Full results from today’s race can be found at supercars.com.
VASC teams will now prepare for the next event on the calendar, the non-championship round at the 2017 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix from March