Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen has thrown the kitchen sink at his Supercars rivals in the championship's penultimate round, closing in on the overall lead with a second placing at Gold Coast.
After his Bathurst 1000 victory last month, the reigning champion trailled competition leader Brodie Kostecki by 131 points and needed to make dramatic inroads over the final four races of the schedule, with two this weekend and two more at Adelaide next month.
He went close to snatching victory, as he closed on race leader Cam Waters over the final laps, but could not make the pass, finishing on the bumper of the polesitter, who won the season's opening race, but languishes seventh on championship standings.
Van Gisbergen enjoyed his first stroke of luck, when Kostecki struck a kerb during the Top 10 Shootout and was relegated to the back of the field, 10th on the starting grid. The Kiwi was third fastest around the tight street circuit that played havoc with drivers exceeding track limits.
The defending champion tried everything he could to overhaul Waters over the closing laps of the race, even shearing off his right mirror on the wall, as he cut his margins to the bare minimum.
"It was pretty good," he said. "I lost a little bit at the start and tried to claw it back... hopefully we can back it up tomorrow."
Van Gisbergen has already announced his departure from the Aussie racing circuit to take up a NASCAR contract in the United States next year, but clearly has unfinished business left.
Kostecki finished 12 seconds behind his rival in fifth and saw his margin reduced to 104 points on overall standings. The remaining three races carry a total of 450 points.