GOLD Coast driver James Courtney has managed to survive major carnage to claim race three honours at the 2014 V8 Supercars season-opening Adelaide 500.
Rival Jamie Whincup failed to complete the final 250-kilometre leg due to a controversial pit lane drive-through penalty.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports, fighting his way back from the penalty, which dropped him to eighth, Whincup’s Triple Eight Holden collided with Michael Caruso’s Nissan on the 63rd of 76 laps, snapping the steering.
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Will Davison also failed to finish after crashing his Mercedes-Benz at the track’s infamous high-speed Turn 8.
While somehow, Jason Bright managed to escape without major injury from a multiple rollover, which saw his Holden slam into a tyre barrier, sending it spiralling into the air along the safety fence before it slammed to earth upside down.
Whincup’s team-mate Craig Lowndes stayed the course and crossed the line second, with pole sitter Shane van Gisbergen third.
After the first round, Lowndes leads the series with 282 points ahead of Holden’s Fabian Coulthard (230), van Gisbergen (221) and Whincup (199).