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AUG 25, 2018

TYLER EVERINGHAM has extended his margin at the top of the Kumho Tyre Australian V8 Touring Car series, taking victory in the first race at The Bend Motorsport Park in South Australia.

The MW Motorsport driver led home defending champion Jack Smith and closest title rival Zak Best in the first seven-lap race today.

It means he turned a six point title lead – Best gained three points via qualifying on pole position earlier in the day – into a 15-point margin ahead of tomorrow’s pair of races that will decide the title.

From Pole, Best made a solid start in his MW Falcon however was beaten into turn one by Everingham, who grabbed an early lead.

Best was relegated to third by a fast-starting Jon McCorkindale, while Jack Smith settled into fourth on the opening lap as the leading quartet ran nose-to-tail.

An early Safety car halted proceedings, when Mark Primmer ended up in the turn six gravel trap after contact from Maxim Erickson – who was handed a 30-second penalty for his efforts.

The race resumed after two laps and there was instant change, McCorkindale running wide at turn 13 on the fifth lap, dropping back to fourth position.

Best was in the thick of the action and in a three-way fight retained third, while McCorkindale went from second to fourth and Smith from fourth to second.

The run to the flag was straightforward from there, Everingham edging away from Smith to win by four seconds, while Best pressured the Brad Jones Racing Commodore to the line in a close finish for second and third.

Everingham’s path to victory saw him set The Bend Motorsport Park Kumho series lap record, his 1m54.6900s best the new benchmark for the category to chase tomorrow.

His 15-point lead is strong however 100 remain up for grabs across tomorrow’s two races – 40 for victory in race two and 60 for success in the longer finale’.

The fight is now a clean battle between the pair, McCorkindale’s fourth position dropping him more than 100 behind the leaders. Both races will be shown live on FOX Sports 506.