Townsville Supercars: 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.

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 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 was 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 b it 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. 

Race results:

Cla # Driver Car Gap
1 6 Australia Cameron Waters Ford Mustang GT  
2 97 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Holden Commodore ZB 0.876
3 17 Australia Will Davison Ford Mustang GT 1.357
4 14 Australia Todd Hazelwood Holden Commodore ZB 6.653
5 11 Australia Anton De Pasquale Ford Mustang GT 7.924
6 88 Australia Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore ZB 12.300
7 44 Australia James Courtney Ford Mustang GT 15.478
8 18 Australia Mark Winterbottom Holden Commodore ZB 15.898
9 25 Australia Chaz Mostert Holden Commodore ZB 17.877
10 8 Australia Nick Percat Holden Commodore ZB 18.789
11 2 Australia Bryce Fullwood Holden Commodore ZB 24.360
12 9 Australia Will Brown Holden Commodore ZB 24.931
13 5 Australia Jack Le Brocq Ford Mustang GT 25.654
14 99 Brodie Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 27.178
15 34 Australia Jake Kostecki Holden Commodore ZB 27.615
16 7 New Zealand Andre Heimgartner Ford Mustang GT 28.884
17 22 Australia Garry Jacobson Holden Commodore ZB 29.631
18 20 Australia Scott Pye Holden Commodore ZB 29.971
19 35 Australia Zane Goddard Holden Commodore ZB 35.481
20 19 New Zealand Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore ZB 36.259
21 4 Australia Jack Smith Holden Commodore ZB 36.294
22 3 Australia Tim Slade Ford Mustang GT 39.422
23 26 Australia David Reynolds Ford Mustang GT  
  96 Australia Macauley Jones Holden Commodore ZB  
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Townsville Supercars: Van Gisbergen wins all-Triple Eight thriller

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