ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 05: James Courtney drives the #22 Holden Racing Team Holden during race two for the V8 Supercars Clipsal 500 at Adelaide Street Circuit on March 5, 2016 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

James Whincup got off to a perfect start in 2016, winning race one at the Clipsal 500.

Whincup finished 3.9 seconds ahead of second placed James Courtney, while Shane van Gisbergen came in third in his first race with Red Bull Racing.

Despite starting in pole position, it was a race to forget for Scott Pye, who had a left-rear wheel nut that refused to move on his tyre change at his compulsory pit stop, as he eventually finished in 12th spot.

In race two, James Courtney got one back on Jamie Whincup, leading the race one winner to the chequered flag in a thrilling final lap.

Chaz Mostert marked his comeback to racing after a horror smash last season, where he broke his left leg and wrist and suffered knee injuries in qualifying for the Bathurst 1000 last October, with an impressive third place finish.

Race three qualifying begins at 12pm (AEDT) today, while the 78-lap race commences at 3.50pm (AEDT).