Ryan Hansford had beaten Bowe to pole position by 0.6s in a Holden Torana qualifying one-two and led the field into the first corner in Race 1.
From the second row of the grid, Steven Johnson swept around the outside at Moffat Corner (Turn 1) and finally wrested second position from George Miedecke as they exited Turn 4, with Bowe having dropped to fourth.
Hansford got almost a second clear of the field on the first lap alone but had been reeled in by Miedecke and Bowe by the end of Lap 4.
Contact ensued at Bond Bend on Lap 5 when Miedecke appeared to attempt a criss-cross, but he executed a clean pass at the same corner next time around.
Hansford broke into a slide off the Turn 8 hairpin on Lap 7 and that gave Bowe the run he needed to move into second position at Turn 9.
Bowe had a look at Miedecke on Lap 8 at Turn 05, before pulling off a move on the #85 Whiteline Racing entry four corners later.
From there, the six-time TCM series winner romped to a 3.1745s victory after 11 laps of racing.
Miedecke found himself under pressure from Hansford in the closing stages but there would be no further changes to the top three.
Johnson shook off fellow XD driver Marcus Zukanovic to finish fourth, and Cameron Tilley (Valiant Pacer) overtook the #71 Acton Racing Ford on Lap 9 to take fifth.
Zukanovic just beat Jamie Tilley (Ford Mustang) to sixth at the chequered flag, with the top 10 rounded out by Cameron Mason (Ford Mustang), Andrew Fisher (Ford Falcon XY), and Mark King (Chevrolet Camaro SS).
Earlier, Bowe drove from 15th to victory in the Trophy Race, with Jamie Tilley second at the end from Miedecke, Zukanovic, and Mason.
Round 1 concludes tomorrow with two more races, at 08:00 and 10:15 local time/AEDT.
In the day's Aussie Racing Cars action, there was also a double winner.
Tom Hayman prevailed in Race 2 of Round 1 by almost seven seconds over Cody Garland, then held off Race 1 winner Cody Brewczynski to take the spoils in Race 3 by less than four tenths of a second.