Ash Walsh has scored a flawless start-to-finish victory in the opening Shannons Australian GT race at the 2017 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix.
Walsh scored the holeshot in the 11-lap race ahead of fellow Audi R8 LMS driver and polesitter Kelvin van der Linde, and from that moment had clear air ahead of him in a cool and calculated display.
His final winning margin over the German van der Linde was just over two seconds, with Dave Russell (Lamborghini R-EX) completing the podium ahead of Daniel Gaunt, Dean Fiore (both R8 LMS) and Lewis Williamson (McLaren 650S GT3).
Van der Linde's consolation was the fastest lap of 1:55.1964, just shy of Craig Baird's current Albert Park benchmark.
Max Twigg (Mercedes AMG GT-S), Steve Richards (BMW M6 GTS), Glen Wood (R-EX) and Peter Major (R-EX) completed the top 10.
Meanwhile, the race ended on a sour note for 17th place finisher Ash Samadi, who inexplicably exited stage right and cannoned into the pit wall after crossing the finish line in his Audi. The front end of his R8 LMS suffered severe damage, and his team will be fighting against the clock to have his car ready for race two at 10:45am tomorrow.