Down shows a clean pair of heals to Muggelton and Ruggier as they battle for second.

The official V8 Supercar Series championship headed to Ontario, Canada and the famous Canadian Tire Motorsports Park –aka Mosport — for the first round of the season. Madison Down took the pole postion for the opening online race with Justin Ruggier grabbing second spot on the grid in the final qualifing session. The Row Two was filled by Josh Muggleton and George Maris.Following them on third row were Leigh Ellis and Leigh Day with Chad Chastain and John Emerson starting from P7 and P8 respectively. Dean O’brien would start ninth alongside James McKnight, who rounded-out the top 10.

With the drop of the green flag it was Down who got the best start and bolted into Turn One while Ruggier and Muggelton fought over second position for the first four corners before Muggelton prevailed. Ellis got a move done on Day towards the end of the opening lap after Day ran wide through Moss Corner. This, in turn, made it difficult for Day to get back on the racing line causing him to lose even more positions to Chastain, Emerson and O’Brien as he slippped down to ninth.

Day runs wide and commences his fall down the order.

Beau Cattell spun his ANZ Motorsports Falcon leading onto pit straight at the end of the second lap to drop him to the rear of the field, while Lap Seven saw Maris get past Ruggier for third on the exit of Turn Six and started his chase of Muggleton in second spot.

Lap 10 saw the first of the pit stops with Cattell being the first to visit pit lane. Most of the strategies seemed to favour pitting as early as possible; however the Powerbond entry of Tobias Czerny went the other way and ran a long first stint before pitting on Lap 24. When it all washed out after the pit stops the biggest mover was Cattell, who moved-up from 23rd position to 11th.

The Powerbond Falcons both had troubles on Lap 26 but in different parts of the circuit.  First, Chris Stone making contact with the rear of Marlon McMullens Falcon at Turn Three causing him to finish in the wall, while seven turns later, Czerny spun leading onto the front straight.

While all of this was happening Maris had closed right in on Muggleton and the ensuing battle for second place provided the highlight of the race. In the end Maris had to settle for third when Muggelton refused to relinquish his hold on P2.

Muggleton and Maris battled to the finish for P2.

The man that no one could catch though was Down, who led from pole position to take the win by over six seconds. Ruggier finished in fourth ahead of the fast-approaching Emerson in fifth. Day fought back to come home in sixth ahead of Chastain, O’brien, U’Ren and Ford who ended-up in 10th. Cattell rallied to finish 11th ahead of Autridge and team mate Filsell. Multi 21 driver Bourke placed 14th with Czerny in 15th and Schreyer in 16th. The last of the cars on the lead lap was Kurt Stenberg who finished in 17th.

Split 2 winner Samuel Collins
Split 3 winner Timothy Jackson
Split 4 Winner Dave Maher
Split 5 winner Scott Stephens

Check out V8s Online‘s broadcast of Down’s Mosport win, along with other great sim-racing action.

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