Hunter Ford (Yamaha) has claimed the honours in the opening eight-lap Supersport 300 race at the Michelin® Australian Grand Prix 2017, with spectacularly close racing wowing the late afternoon spectators.
Ford, who qualified on the fourth row of the grid, robbed Oli Bayliss (Kawasaki) of the lead on the run to the finish line, which saw the top six riders separated by just 0.125 seconds.
KTM rider Max Croker was second ahead of the Yamaha-mounted Jack Mahaffy.
Bayliss, who went from seventh to first at the start of the penultimate lap, was baulked by a backmarker at turn 11 on the final circuit, after which he was swamped by the chasing pack on the final run along Gardner Straight.
He finished in fourth, while the Yamahas of Zach Levy and Tom Bramich – who both led the race at one stage – rounded out the top six.
Brock Pearson (Yamaha) was seventh ahead of Seth Crump (KTM), Locky Taylor (Yamaha) and Ty Lynch (Yamaha).
The highest finishing female was Yamaha’s Tayla Relph, who finished in 12th place from 37 starters.
The second of the category’s three-race program will get underway tomorrow at 5.40pm, straight after the World Championship category’s qualifying sessions.