17 Sep 2018
It was at the Sandown 500 back in 2003 that Triple Eight Race Engineering joined the Supercars field, and some 15 years later it continued its authoritative stamp on the series with a podium lockout at the endurance series opener.
Jamie Whincup and Paul Dumbrell dominated the race from the front row to the chequrered flag to send an ominous signal to rivals ahead of October’s Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
The duo never looked like surrendering the lead, with pundits adamant the #1 Red Bull Holden was capable of lapping the field.
They led home stablemates Shane Van Gisbergen and Earl Bamber in second place, with Craig Lowndes and Steven Richards finishing third in the Autobarn Commodore.
Scott McLaughlin kept his championship aspirations in healthy shape by joining with co-driver Alexandre Prémat to claim fourth.
Polesitters David Reynolds and Luke Youlden recovered from a tardy start and front damage to salvage fifth.
The championship picture sees Van Gisbergen inch ahead at the top of the standings ahead of McLaughlin, Whincup and Lowndes.
For Whincup, the result was a welcome reward for preparation and a fitting outcome for the team’s 15 years in the sport.
"We had a really solid weekend,” Whincup said.
“I put it down to preparation - we prepared really well before the event, we brought three good cars here.
“I'm really proud of the engineering group, they just keep developing, keep moving forward and keep the speed in that car.
“The car was at its best in the race, it's just great to get a bit of silverware from three months of solid hard work. "
The next round of the championship is the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.