SHANE van Gisbergen’s victory in Race 1 of the Repco Mount Panorama 500 added to the team’s amazing record in Supercars season openers.
It marked the 14th time in 16 years that the Brisbane-based team has taken out the first championship race of the year.
That period stretches back to the 2006 Adelaide 500, where Craig Lowndes won the Saturday race aboard the #888 Betta Electrical Ford.
Jamie Whincup won the second race of 2006 on his debut with Triple Eight and went on to win Race 1 nine times between 2008 and 2020.
2021 is the third time in four years that van Gisbergen has achieved the feat while Lowndes won the opener twice.
The team’s 14 opening race wins have come at three different circuits; Adelaide, Abu Dhabi and now Mount Panorama.
Triple Eight’s only two defeats in the season opener since 2006 came in years when their rivals rolled out brand new machinery.
In 2007 Todd Kelly and the Holden Racing Team gave the VE Commodore a win on debut while Scott McLaughlin and DJR Team Penske triumphed with the new Ford Mustang in 2019.
Also of note, 2021 is the second consecutive year where the winner of the opening race had also won the last race of the previous season.
Van Gisbergen now has 41 career wins to move ahead of Glenn Seton to seventh on the all-time tally and leads the championship for the first time since October 2018.
FIRST-UP WINS: Triple Eight’s record of Race 1 victories
|1||2006||Craig Lowndes||Ford Falcon BF||Adelaide|
|2||2008||Jamie Whincup||Ford Falcon FG||Adelaide|
|3||2009||Jamie Whincup||Ford Falcon FG||Adelaide|
|4||2010||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VE||Abu Dhabi|
|5||2011||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VE II||Abu Dhabi|
|6||2012||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VE II||Adelaide|
|7||2013||Craig Lowndes||Holden Commodore VF||Adelaide|
|8||2014||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||Adelaide|
|9||2015||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||Adelaide|
|10||2016||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore VF||Adelaide|
|11||2017||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore VF||Adelaide|
|12||2018||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore ZB||Adelaide|
|13||2020||Jamie Whincup||Holden Commodore ZB||Adelaide|
|14||2021||Shane van Gisbergen||Holden Commodore ZB||Bathurst|