Van Gisbergen caps Australian rally debut with podium

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 03/04/2022
  • By James Pavey, Pics by Australian Rally Championship

Shane van Gisbergen has clinched a podium finish in his competitive Australian rally debut.

The Supercars points leader finished second outright behind Harry Bates at the Netier Capital National Rally.

Bates and co-driver John McCarthy led the rally from start to finish, with van Gisbergen running in the top three from the outset.

Third became second for van Gisbergen late on Saturday when Lewis Bates stopped in SS5.

In seven stages on Saturday, van Gisbergen finished second twice, third four times and fourth once.

Van Gisbergen returned on Sunday and won not only SS12, but the rally-ending Power Stage.

Van Gisbergen on Sunday

Toyota driver Bates ended up winning with a margin of nearly 90 seconds over van Gisbergen.

Van Gisbergen won the Power Stage to take points away from Bates, with Hyundai’s Brendon Reeves third overall.

The 58-time Supercars race winner won the Power Stage by just 2.7s from Bates, with Reeves a further 2.2s behind.

Lewis Bates managed to return to the rally and finished fourth in the Power Stage.

Van Gisbergen’s charge to second was aided by a fire for Eli Evans, who failed to score points.

"It's been awesome, I can't believe we've won [the Power Stage]," an elated van Gisbergen told the broadcast.

Power Stage victory

"We've built up the whole time, then after that last service I felt really good on the new tyres.

"It's been a pleasure all weekend, everyone's been really welcoming.

"Team's been awesome, it's been great working with Glen [Weston, co-driver] and learning a lot.

"I love this sport, I really want to do more."

The reigning Supercars champion will carry his 67-point championship lead to next weekend's Beaurepaires Melbourne 400.

Supercars will first hit the Albert Park circuit for practice on Thursday.

The RSEA Safety Motorsport Australian Rally Championship will continue in Western Australia in May.

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