Coates Hire Racing’s Nick Percat achieved a career best V8 Supercars sprint race result when he crossed the line sixth, at today’s opening race of the ITM 500 Auckland at Pukekohe Raceway.
Qualifying saw Percat eighth quickest, equalling his best effort so far this season.
The first race to be run over the Anzac Day long weekend saw Jason Bright take the win after early leader Jamie Whincup suffered power steering problems.
Whincup led for the first third of the race before sliding off at Turn 1 with a steering issue. Whincup eventually finished 24th, seven laps down.
Bright then controlled the race from the front, which ended two laps early due to a time cut-off.
Second was New Zealander Shane van Gisbergen, followed by Craig Lowndes, who continues to lead the championship, James Courtney, Will Davison and Percat sixth in the HHA Racing Commodore.
The race finished early due to a long early Safety Car to recover David Wall’s heavily damaged Dick Johnson Racing Falcon. Side-to-side contact with Chaz Mostert had sent Wall spinning into the fence on the left-hand side at Turn 10. The former Australian GT champion escaped unharmed from the incident.
NICK PERCAT: "I had a good qualifying session that put us in a strong position for the race.The car had good pace right throughout the race and I was delighted to achieve my best sprint race result. I am looking forward to more of the same tomorrow".