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Lowndes, Richards conquer Mount Panorama for Bathurst 1000 win

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Craig Lowndes has captured his sixth career win at the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, co-driving to victory Sunday with Steven Richards in the No. 888 Red Bull Team Australia Holden in the marquee event of the Australian V8 Supercars season. It’s Richards’ fourth win at Bathurst, as well.

Lowndes held off Ford’s Mark Winterbottom – the championship leader – in the final stages of the 161-lap, 1000-kilometer race that ran over six hours on historic Mount Panorama.

Both cars started poorly – the No. 888 car started 15th while Winterbottom and Steve Owen’s No. 5 Pepsi Max Crew Ford was 14th – but over the course of the race they moved forward.

The climax to the race came when the second Red Bull Holden, driven by Jamie Whincup, didn’t pit under the final safety car period and was ultimately issued a drive-through penalty for improper safety car procedure (passing the pace car). Whincup and Paul Dumbrell dropped to 18th overall and last on the lead lap as a result.

Once Lowndes was into the lead late, he held on to the finish.

There were a couple accidents of note. DJR Team Penske’s Scott Pye had a heavy one late in the race.

Additionally, the all-female lineup of Renee Gracie and Simona de Silvestro still made the finish in 21st following a first-hour shunt by Gracie, as she appeared to lose control over some oil on track.

The usually unflappable de Silvestro did not appear amused at the incident (see below).