Holden Racing Team's Garth Tander helped put his nightmare start to the season behind him with victory in race one of the Clipsal 500 on the streets of Adelaide.
Despite getting the jump at the start and leading the opening laps of the race, Tander spent the middle section of the race behind Team Vodafone's Jamie Whincup.
However, at the final restart he was able to take advantage of better tyre condition to take the lead at the hairpin and from there he never looked back, taking a comfortable win, his first V8 Supercar race victory in Adelaide.
After qualifying 16th, second place was a tremendous performance by Jim Beam Racing's James Courtney. Having the fortune to make his first stop just before the first safety car period worked in his favor, as he moved up to third after those who hadn't pitted uder the safety car made their stops under racing conditions.
He took second place from Whincup soon after the final restart but was unable to catch the race winner as fuel economy worries loomed.
Lee Holdsworth took third with three laps remaining after a quite but strong race. He gained the place after Jamie Whincup, who led through the middle of the race, was compromised on pace after the final restart.
A lack of fresh front tires for Whincup cost him places to Tander and Courtney, and worries about fuel consumption saw him let Holdsworth through within sight of the checkered flag, falling to fourth after probably having the pace to continue his winning start to the season.
Fifth was a good result for Paul Dumbrell despite a bit of up and down throughout the race, leading after the first safety car period after staying out, and then losing eight places in two laps soon after as the field filed past him.
In the final segment of the race he passed Whincup for third place, but six laps later Whincup as well as Holdsworth got ahead of him, dropping him back to fifth.
Jason Bright, Fabian Coulthard and Michael Caruso, who started the race from pitlane filled sixth through eighth place
Tander's teammate Will Davison played the same strategy as Courtney at the first safety car and made similar gains, and recovered from an incident late in the race with Craig Lowndes which dropped him back down the order to finish in ninth, with Russell Ingall completing the top 10.
A pair of Ford frontrunners had dramas, Shane van Gisbergen clipping the tyres at the first chicane while running third right on the tail of Tander, breaking his front suspension, finishing 22nd, one place behind Mark Winterbottom who suffered damage to his car after getting caught up in a nose-to-tail incident soon after the first restart.
Only two places ahead of him was Craig Lowndes, who also suffered for car speed after being in the middle of Winterbottom's incident, Lowndes not helping his situation later in the race when he spun Will Davison after going in too deep passing Rick Kelly at the hairpin, Lowndes given a drivethrough penalty for the contact.
Pos Driver Make Time
1. Garth Tander Holden Commodore VE 1h59m06.5574s
2. James Courtney Ford Falcon FG + 4.0420s
3. Lee Holdsworth Holden Commodore VE + 6.4380s
4. Jamie Whincup Holden Commodore VE + 8.8801s
5. Paul Dumbrell Ford Falcon FG + 9.1506s
6. Jason Bright Holden Commodore VE + 14.7726s
7. Fabian Coulthard Holden Commodore VE + 15.5416s
8. Michael Caruso Holden Commodore VE + 15.9973s
9. Will Davison Holden Commodore VE + 16.6264s
10. Russell Ingall Holden Commodore VE + 23.9269s
11. Alex Davison Ford Falcon FG + 25.8030s
12. Steven Johnson Ford Falcon FG + 29.8968s
13. Todd Kelly Holden Commodore VE + 31.6029s
14. Tony D'Alberto Holden Commodore VE + 32.0715s
15. Jonathon Webb Ford Falcon FG + 32.5275s
16. Dean Fiore Ford Falcon FG + 39.6769s
17. Steven Richards Ford Falcon FG + 46.8233s
18. Daniel Gaunt Holden Commodore VE + 1m04.2621s
19. Craig Lowndes Holden Commodore VE + 1m15.4790s
20. Tony Ricciardello Holden Commodore VE + 1m16.1124s
21. Mark Winterbottom Ford Falcon FG + 3 laps
22. Shane Van Gisbergen Ford Falcon FG + 4 laps
23. Rick Kelly Holden Commodore VE + 12 laps
Driver Make Laps
Jason Richards Holden Commodore VE 39
Greg Murphy Holden Commodore VE 38
Karl Reindler Holden Commodore VE 31
Tim Slade Ford Falcon FG 12
Jason Bargwanna Holden Commodore VE 2