A third place finish at Sydney Olympic Park was enough to secure the 2016 V8 Supercars Championship for Triple Eight Australia driver Shane van Gisbergen. He becomes the first New Zealand driver since Jim Richards in 1991 to win the title, after a dominant first year with Red Bull Racing Australia. Today’s finish means the gap to team mate Jamie Whincup – who won the race – is 170 points, and unassailable with only 150 on offer tomorrow, giving van Gisbergen his maiden championship after debuting back in 2007 with Team Kiwi.
Whincup drove a flawless race but couldn’t do any more to stay in the title fight. “The winner of the championship is the most consistent. Not quite our year but I’ve enjoyed the battle and look forward to doing it again next year. “I had a great year, we just absolutely got hammered with points at a crucial time of the year … not taking anything away from 97.”