Brodie Kostecki says he and and his team will investigate what led to his late-race pace drop-off in the Tasmania finale, which nearly cost him a podium.
Kostecki came home third in Race 12 behind Erebus Motorsport teammate Will Brown and Red Bull Ampol Racing’s Broc Feeney.
The #99 Coca-Cola Camaro was already fighting from behind, with Brown stealing the lead off the line.
Kostecki shadowed Brown before the stops, with the margin between the two Erebus Chevrolets hovering at a second.
After his stop, however, Kostecki suffered a major pace drop-off and was passed by Feeney.
It didn’t recover in time for Kostecki to stave off van Gisbergen, who was racing with a repaired car following his Race 11 crash.
Van Gisbergen dropped Kostecki off the podium with a move at Turn 6 on lap 35, before Kostecki returned the favour three laps later.
Having been within a second of the lead for the first stint, Kostecki ended the race 8.7s for victory.
“I don’t exactly know what happened there,” Kostecki told the Schick Cool Down Lap podcast.
“I was slower after the pit stop, which is pretty not usual.
“We’ll have to go back and look through it, it was a pretty easy second place up until then.
“I had to work pretty hard, then had a pretty big battle there with Shane, which was cool and all.
"But it was a bit strange from the driver’s point of view, coming out and having a slower car.”
Podiums on Sunday left Kostecki happy to consolidate his points lead, which is a reduced 87 points over Brown.
Van Gisbergen is fourth, 172 points down, behind Walkinshaw Andretti United Ford star Chaz Mostert.
Despite his late Race 12 fade, Kostecki says his team is continuing to build confidence as it continues to set the benchmark at each round.
“It’s great that we can go to each track and the car’s going to be there straight away,” he said.
“We’re aiming pretty high now, every track that we go to.
“We weren’t stressed going to this track, but we knew he have to work a bit harder to make sure the car was right.
On being the hunted: “It’s a great thing, the team’s been performing really well under pressure as well.
“I had a pretty bad day yesterday, but the team did awesome to get me back out there and get some points.”
Tickets for the next round, the betr Darwin Triple Crown on June 16-18, are on sale now.