The season-opening Superloop Adelaide 500 again fell into the hands of Scott McLaughlin, who opened his title defence with a second straight overall victory.
The two-time defending champion came away with two trophies and the championship lead, and again staked his claim to be the one to beat.
However, away from the obvious headline of McLaughlin’s victory, it was clear from the bounce that a number of rival teams had made gains and discovered momentum which could prove valuable in mounting a title challenge.
Watch the Beaurepaires Melbourne 400 LIVE & Ad-Break Free on KAYO with the FOX SPORTS race commentary team. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial & start streaming instantly >
Notably, the Red Bull Holden Racing Team carried their late-season 2019 form into 2020 with race days headlined by strong one-lap speed and unmatched race pace.
Walkinshaw Andretti United, meanwhile, were buoyed by new recruit Chaz Mostert’s consistency to help the former factory Holden squad leave the Adelaid streets with silverware and a new practice/qualifying lap record.
Here are the best stats from a thrilling weekend of racing in Adelaide.
All statistics supplied by AN1 Data.
Scott McLaughlin took his second straight overall Adelaide 500 win, with the crown determined by the winner of the Sunday race. It was the Shell V-Power Racing driver’s third win from the last four races in Adelaide.
It was also McLaughlin’s 44th career race win, and first since his Bathurst breakthrough last October. The Kiwi is now just four wins behind Peter Brock for fifth on the all-time race wins list in ATCC/Supercars championship history.
McLaughlin won from P2 on the grid, marking the first time a driver had won from that grid position in Adelaide since Jamie Whincup’s Saturday win in 2016.
It was McLaughlin’s 36th win in Shell V-Power Racing colours since he moved to the team in 2017. It was DJR/DJR Team Penske’s 124th championship race win, and the first time a Ford driver had won back-to-back Adelaide 500 titles since Whincup in 2008 and 2009.
Chaz Mostert broke the practice/qualifying lap record in Firday’s Practice 3, with the Walkinshaw Andretti United recruit’s 1:19.2412s undercutting Shane van Gisbergen’s 1:19.2951s from Sunday qualifying in 2017.
Mostert claimed a maiden podium for Holden on Sunday, with his P2 finish equalling his best Adelaide finish (P2 in Race 2, 2017). It was a 54th career podium finish for Mostert, drawing him level with Glenn Seton for 12th all-time.
It was WAU’s first podium finish since Bathurst last year, and the team’s 25th podium finish in Adelaide, adding to their seven overall Adelaide 500 wins.
TRIPLE EIGHT’S TOPSY-TURVY WEEKEND
Shane van Gisbergen tied teammate Jamie Whincup for the most poles in Adelaide 500 history. A day after Whincup claimed his eighth pole on the Adelaide streets, van Gisbergen drew level in Sunday’s shootout.
Whincup claimed his 84th career pole on the Saturday and first in Adelaide since 2015, with the margin over David Reynolds – 0.0048s – the closest in Adelaide 500 history.
Van Gisbergen, meanwhile, claimed his 30th career pole on the Sunday and drew level with Garth Tander on the all-time pole list. It was a fifth pole in the last eight at Adelaide for van Gisbergen, and his 15th appearance in an Adelaide 500 shootout.
Such has been the factory Holden team’s form since Bathurst last year that they have taken the last six pole positions in the championship across 2019 and into 2020. After Sunday, Triple Eight had taken 132 poles and 15 in Adelaide – both are records.
However, van Gisbergen’s Sunday DNF was his first non-finish in Adelaide since Saturday 2013, also ending a run of seven straight Adelaide podium finishes.