Bilinski qualified poorly in 14th position for Race 1 of the third round, but gambled on slick tyres with the weather threatening on a still damp track. Within two laps he was in the top five and shortly was in front, before he was fighting off his M2 Competition teammate Liam Sceats (New Zealand) when the race was red flagged.
With Christian Mansell away on F3 testing details, there were just the two Australians in the field. MTEC Motorsport teammates Tommy Smith and Elliott Cleary qualified eighth and ninth and finished fifth and eighth respectively.
Weather conditions at the North Waikato circuit in New Zealand were unpredictable, ranging from sunshine to torrential rain alternatively. It played havoc in the lead up support races but by the time the TFRO cars hit the grid the sun was out, shining on a wet track.
In qualifying the track was also improving from a deluge beforehand. China's Gerrard Xie was able to come out on top, ahead of Sceats who is second in the series behind Bilinski now that Mansell is no longer participating.
Kiwis Kaleb Ngatoa and Kaden Probst started on full wets and while Xie staggered at the start, Ngatoa and Probst stormed through to be first and second on the road ahead of Sceats. But as the dry conditions continued, the wet tyre runners faded. Probst ultimately elected to pit for slicks while Ngatoa was eventually lapped.
After Bilinski took the lead from Sceats, the championship leader looked set to hold it to the flag, until the weather moved in again and Sceats was able to mount a challenge. Heavy rain and an incident involving Italy's Nicola Lacorte and Ngatoa brought out the race stoppage.
Canada's Patrick Woods-Toth was third ahead of Xie who was just in front of Smith. Michael Shin was next ahead of Lacorte was classified seventh despite his demise, ahead of Cleary.