Motorsport: Shane van Gisbergen completes perfect start to Supercars campaign with opening race win at Mount Panorama 500

Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen has started the new Supercars season in style, winning the opening race of the Mount Panorama 500 at the famed Bathurst track. 

Just five months after claiming his first Bathurst 1000 victory, the Red Bull Holden driver took the chequered flag first, heading home Chaz Mostert and Will Davison in the 40-lap sprint race.

The 2016 series champion started third, but mechanical issues for pole-sitter Came Waters and a rapid pit-stop from the Triple Eight crew saw Van Gisbergen take the lead after 10 laps. 

Only Mostert threatened a perfect start for the Auckland-born flyer, but Van Gisbergen held off the fast-charging Walkinshaw-Andretti United driver, winning by just over a second.

Waters made a clean start from pole, but there was early drama for Holden driver Scott Pye who made contact with Kiwi Andre Heimgartner at the Cutting and found himself limping back to the pitlane.

The race was turned upside down on lap seven, when Anton De Pasquale, making his debut in the Dick Johnson Racing Mustang, crashed out of the race heading up the Mountain.

The majority of the field pitted and that's where the first sign of problems for Waters became evident, with a long stop dropping him back to the midfield.

Waters returned to the lane a lap later and his race was done with a power steering issue.

Van Gisbergen controlled the remainder of the race, but had to fight a little harder than it looked after a late safety car brought Mostert back into play.

Tim Slade crashed his Mustang at the Esses while chasing down Davison for the final spot on the podium.

Mostert, on fresher tyres, stalked the Kiwi after the restart, but van Gisbergen held his nerve to open the season with maximum points.

Andre Heimgartner had a day to forget after a mid-race penalty dropped him out of the top 10. The Kiwi ended up in 15th, a place behind former DJR-Team Penske's Fabian Coulthard, driving for his new outfit, Team Sydney.