MEDIA RELEASE/Toyota Gazoo racing New Zealand - Photo: supplied In extraordinary times, an extraordinary driver…
MEDIA RELEASE/Supercars & Velocity Magazine – Images: supplied
Shane van Gisbergen has survived a late-race tangle to be crowned champion of the inaugural BP Supercars All Stars Eseries.
Van Gisbergen entered the Bathurst decider with a 108-point buffer from Kiwi compatriot Scott McLaughlin, meaning fifth would be enough to secure the silverware.
It was the wildcard duo of Harley Haber and Brodie Kostecki who stole the show to fight it out at the front, Haber jumping the latter off the start line.
Velocity Magazine had an exclusive chat with Harley Haber after his win at Bathurst last night, we asked him to give us his take on racing against Australia and New Zealands best drivers.
“One week I was sitting on the lounge watching the Supercar eSeries as a fan, then the next week I found myself competing against Australian Motorsports biggest heroes.” Haber told Velocity.
“It is a bit of a dream come true, winning the final round of the season, winning Bathurst and being the only wildcard to win a genuine race (not a reverse grid) after all the other big name stars had tried, including Formula 1 stars and iRacing regulars Max Verstappen and Lando Norris.”
“As a racing driver, you are forced to deal with the pressure, and of course there was pressure, however I pushed that aside and treated it just like any other iRacing race that I had done 1000 times before. Matt Stone Racing really made me feel comfortable and had me settled in the right frame of mind.”
“I wanted to beat SVG (Shane van Gisbergen), and at the end when he was on a newer tyre, I thought he might just get to me, however after he made contact with Anton (de Pasquale), and my lead grew to 6 seconds I had that moment come over me, where I began to believe that the win might actually happen here.”
“It was a very cool final lap, I had to hold back the tears and keep myself in check.”
“Looking forward, Super2 is my goal, MSR have given me a great offer that i’d like to pursue, however its no secret that I don’t have rich parents, I need sponsorship to progress, and I hope after that display last night that I can use that as a platform to work with and get myself back into a real race car again.”
Kostecki got back ahead by virtue of an undercut before Haber forced his way by at Griffins Bend – and from there he would cruise to victory.
But all eyes were on the title battle a little further back.
McLaughlin blotted his copybook in an attempt to undercut the lead pack, collecting the tyre barriers on pit entry at the end of lap three.
His #17 Mustang would be bruised and battered by the finish, ultimately ending a lap down – but van Gisbergen himself nearly threw it away in an attempt to pass Anton De Pasquale for second on the penultimate lap.
Van Gisbergen spun De Pasquale at Forrest’s Elbow and the situation was made more awkward as the Penrite Racing Holden struggled to get out of the wall while van Gisbergen waited to redress.
A penalty did not eventuate, but Kostecki and Chaz Mostert did jump the pair to join Haber on the podium.
Fifth was enough for van Gisbergen to clinch the title, having ridden a dominant wave of form through the second half of the Eseries.
Fourth-placed De Pasquale meanwhile did enough to beat Cameron Waters to third in the final standings.
Broc Feeney, Zak Best, Andre Heimgartner, Waters and Nick Percat finished sixth through 10th, with McLaughlin classified 22nd.
Now that the BP All Stars eSeries has been completed the focus now returns to the real world Supercars racing with it all restarting at Sydney Motorsport Park Sat 27-Sun 28 June, keep an eye on Velocity Magazine for all the live updates.
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