Will Davison defeated Ford Performance Racing team-mate Mark Winterbottom in a tight victory battle in the first V8 Supercar race of the weekend at Symmons Plain in Tasmania.
The duo had also shared the front row, and although Winterbottom had taken pole, it was Davison who jumped ahead at the start and took charge.
While his teammate edged away, Winterbottom – who felt his winter leg injury was compromising his starts – got embroiled in hard-fought tussles with Jamie Whincup (Triple Eight Holden) and Shane van Gisbergen (Stone Brothers Ford)
After shaking off van Gisbergen, Winterbottom reclaimed second from Whincup when the champion ran wide at Turn 7 just before the pit stops began. Winterbottom was able to gain on Davison during the tire changes, and put his teammate under heavy pressure at times in the second half of the race, but Davison always managed to hang on.
Whincup eventually escaped from a four-car pack to secure the final podium spot, with van Gisbergen resisting Whincup's teammate Craig Lowndes for fourth. David Reynolds was in this group for a while in the third Ford from FPR's stable, as he finished sixth, just ahead of Garth Tander (Holden Racing Team) and Tim Slade (James Rosenberg/Stone Brothers).
Former champion James Courtney's tough run in the second HRT car got no better as he clashed with Kelly Racing's Rick Kelly on lap one.
Results - 59 laps:
Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Will Davison FPR Ford 52m30.5485s
2. Mark Winterbottom FPR Ford + 0.6395s
3. Jamie Whincup Triple 8 Holden + 9.1028s
4. Shane van Gisbergen Stone Brothers Ford + 13.3803s
5. Craig Lowndes Triple 8 Holden + 13.7788s
6. David Reynolds Rod Nash/FPR Ford + 18.8631s
7. Garth Tander HRT Holden + 20.2176s
8. Tim Slade Rosenberg/SBR Ford + 20.4327s
9. Lee Holdsworth Stone Brothers Ford + 27.3373s
10. Todd Kelly Kelly Holden + 31.1626s
11. Steven Johnson Dick Johnson Ford + 36.5306s
12. Taz Douglas Dumbrell Holden + 37.1313s
13. Steve Owen Dick Johnson Ford + 39.0861s
14. James Moffat Dick Johnson Ford + 39.5981s
15. Michael Caruso Garry Rogers Holden + 40.3658s
16. Fabian Coulthard Brad Jones Holden + 48.8080s
17. Alexandre Premat Garry Rogers Holden + 51.8426s
18. James Courtney HRT Holden + 1 lap
19. Rick Kelly Kelly Holden + 1 lap
20. Michael Patrizi Tekno Holden + 1 lap
21. David Russell Kelly Holden + 1 lap
22. Dean Fiore Triple F Ford + 1 lap
23. Karl Reindler Kelly Holden + 1 lap
24. Russell Ingall Walkinshaw Holden + 2 laps
25. Jason Bright Brad Jones Holden + 8 laps
26. Tony D'Alberto D'Alberto Ford + 10 laps
Did not finish:
Jonathon Webb Tekno Holden 26 laps
David Wall Britek/BJR Holden 20 laps